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Care to learn funding

Care to learn funding

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Young parents can often find it a struggle to continue with their education while forking out for expensive childcare at the same time. However, a government scheme called Care to Learn funding can offer some help towards the cost of childcare for those wishing to go back to school or college after their baby is born.


To qualify for Care to Learn funding you must be under the age of 20 at the beginning of the course. If you turn 20 during the course your funding will remain in place until either the course ends or you stop attending. You must also be the main carer for your child and the recipient of the child’s Child Benefit. If the child’s other parent is not in work or education and is able to look after the child then funding won’t usually be granted. The funding is only available to people living and studying in England and applicants must be either a British citizen or a national of a European Economic Area (EEA) member country.

What will I receive?

The rate of Care to Learn funding is £160 per week for each child if you live outside London or £175 per week for those living in the capital. The payments are forwarded directly to your childcare provider after checks are made that your child has been attending childcare and you’ve been taking part in your course. You need to make a new application for each year that you wish to continue claiming.

Why should I go back to education?

Care to learn fundingReturning to education not only allows you to get qualifications and experience that may lead to better job opportunities, it also helps you gain confidence and develop new skills. On top of that, attending school or college gives you a chance to socialise with your peers and remain independent.

Courses and Childcare

Only publicly funded courses are accepted for Care to Learn. These are normally offered in schools, sixth-form colleges, other colleges, non-waged apprenticeships or Children’s Centres. Both short courses and long courses are accepted, even if they don’t lead to a formal qualification. If you’re not sure then the school or college should be able to tell you whether it is publicly funded. Apprentices earning a wage and higher education students at university are not eligible. Only childcare providers registered with Ofsted will qualify for Care to Learn funding. This includes childminders, private nurseries, playgroups and after school clubs. You can’t get funding for a family member to look after your child unless the person is both registered to look after other children and doesn’t live at your address.

How do I claim?

Once you have decided on your course and your childcare provider you should fill out an application form, which can be downloaded online, and post it to the Learner Support Service in Birmingham. When your application has been processed you’ll receive a Notice of Entitlement informing you of how much money you’ll get. Your childcare provider will also receive correspondence outlining a payment plan, which tells them when they can expect payment. If your application is turned down then you’ll receive a letter telling you the reasons for it.




About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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