Early years pupil premium

Early years pupil premium is additional funding for early years settings to improve the education they provide for disadvantaged 3 and 4 year olds.

Who can claim?

All providers delivering funded early education places are eligible.

What is the eligibility criteria?

Early years pupil premium can be claimed by the childcare provider if a child at their setting is accessing free early education for 3 and 4 year olds and the child’s parent or carer receives one of the following benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Universal Credit
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit (provided the family is not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
  • Working Tax Credit run-on (paid for 4 weeks after a family stops qualifying for Working Tax Credit)

Or the child falls into one of the following groups:

  • Looked after by the Local Authority for at least one day
  • Adopted from care
  • Has left care through a special guardianship arrangement
  • Is subject to a child arrangement order (previously known as a residence order)

How much will the childcare provider be paid?

The premium is paid at a national rate of 53p for every free early education hour that an eligible child attends their free early education. Wigan Council passes on the full rate to providers.

Children will not need to access the full entitlement to be eligible for the early years pupil premium as providers will be paid on a pro-rata basis.

What is the childcare provider’s role in promoting the premium to parents and carers?

Childcare providers need to tell all parents about the early years pupil premium, highlight the benefits for their children and encourage eligible parents to let you know who they are. This should be voluntary, some parents will choose not to identify themselves as meeting the eligibility criteria.

To help providers, we have produced two sample letters to give out to parents

  1. Use if you are a private and voluntary provide uploading the EYPP information onto the Headcount portal or a school carrying out checks on behalf of parents
  2. Use if you are a school signposting parents to the online form.

You can use the sample letters or use your own method of communicating this information to your parents.   

You may want to advertise it on your website, in newsletters or through social media.

How do parents claim?

All childcare providers, other than school nurseries should ask all parents/carers to complete the parental agreement form so that they can upload the information via the headcount portal to the Local Authority to complete a check.

The Local Authority will hold these details on their system so a check can be completed year on year. If the child is eligible, the early years and childcare team will inform you and the finance team will release the funding to your and it is then your responsibility to inform parent/carers.

If a child attends a school nursery parents will be asked to do one of two things, either:

  1. Complete a parental agreement in order for the school to complete a check or
  2. Signposted directly to the online form so they can carry out the check themselves.

In the case of a child who has previously been in Local Authority care, the parent/carer must complete the registration form and also provide the childcare provider with a copy of their relevant order. The childcare provider will then notify the Local Authority that they have seen the relevant paperwork and confirm that the child is eligible.

How can childcare providers spend the premium?

Early years providers can choose how they wish to spend the early years pupil premium but they should use evidence about what works when making this decision and it must raise the quality of their early years education offer.

This could be through:

  • Pooling the early years pupil premium to purchase shared services such as an early years graduate or a speech and language therapist
  • Buying services from teaching schools alliances
  • Improving staff member’s qualifications
  • Accessing specific training such as Elklan training
  • Providing additional staff to implement strategies such as the Every Child a Talker (ECAT) programme.

The Education Endowment Foundation currently provides a teaching and learning toolkit, which is a summary of educational strategies and research to help teachers and schools decide how to use their resources to improve the attainment of disadvantaged children.

This toolkit has been extended for early years providers to assist them in identifying how best to spend the early years pupil premium.


Rate the information on this page

green smiley (good) orange smiley (average) red smiley (poor)

© Wigan Council