The Department for Education have released the latest statistics on the number of 30 hours free childcare codes issued and validated for the Spring 2018 term following a pledge to provide transparency around the national roll out of this entitlement.
Parents apply and have their eligibility checked for 30 hours free childcare via the Childcare Service.
If a parent is found to be eligible, they will be given a code which they can then take to
their chosen childcare provider. The childcare providers or local authorities then validate these
codes via the Eligibility Checking System.
To access the childcare offer parents must have generated a code and this code must then be validated.
The latest figures realised show;
• In January 2018; 329,505 eligibility codes were issued
• In February 2018; 303,883 were validated
meaning that 92% of all codes have been validated to use the 30 hour childcare offer. This is marginally down (by 2%) from the Autumn 2017 term when there were an estimated 202,783 children in a 30 hours place. However, there has been a significant increase for the number of codes issued, which has surpassed the DfE’s target of 310,000 codes.
The DfE has also published a detailed local authority 30 hours breakdown.
There were 12 local authorities in February 2018, where every eligibility code for Spring 2018 has been validated: Solihull, Camden, Bath and North East Somerset, Portsmouth, Trafford, Brighton and Hove, Gateshead, Cheshire East, City of London, Staffordshire, East Riding of Yorkshire, Warrington.
The average validation rates in London are the lowest, with an average of 86% across all London authorities.
Local authorities and providers are encouraged to remind parents to revalidate their codes and confirm their eligibility in good time.