Flying Start funded childcare

Funded childcare for children living in a Flying Start area

Flying Start childcare

All children living in a Flying Start area are entitled to a funded childcare place from the term following their second birthday up until the end of the term that they turn three and are eligible for an Early Years Education place.

Regular part-time attendance at high quality childcare has shown to significantly improve outcomes for children. If you live in a Flying Start area, we encourage you to take up your childcare place.

Children are entitled to a 2.5 hour session per day, 5 days a week, term time only. There may be circumstances, such as working families, who wish to use 2 sessions per day to support their work pattern. You can discuss this with your chosen Flying Start childcare provider.

To accompany this page, we have prepared a series of frequently asked questions you may find useful.

Step 1: Check your child’s eligibility

1 in 2 households in the Caerphilly county borough are now eligible for Flying Start childcare.

To be eligible your child must be living in a Flying Start postcode.

This must be:

  • the child’s main home address,
  • the address to which their Child Benefit is paid, and
  • the address registered with the child’s health visitor.

The address used cannot be:

  • that of another relative, such as a grandparent
  • a childminder or other care provider.

When you apply, you will need to provide documents that show where the child lives.

Use the postcode checker to find out if your child is eligible.

Please use uppercase letters, i.e CF11 1AA

Step 2: Check when you should apply

To help you apply at the right time, please check your child’s date of birth in the table below.

We recommend you apply for Flying Start childcare during the preferred applications periods shown. You can apply after that time; however, spaces do fill up quickly and applying late may mean you missing out on your preferred childcare provider.

Child’s date of birth Preferred application period When your child can access Flying Start Childcare Date you will be notified of the outcome
01/04/2021 to 31/08/2021 From 24/04/2023 To 12/05/2023 01/09/2023 to 19/07/2024 Within 10 working days of application
01/09/2021 to 31/12/2021 From 25/09/2023 To 13/10/2023 08/01/2024 to 20/12/2024 Within 10 working days of application
01/01/2022 to 31/03/2022 From 08/01/2024 To 26/01/20243 08/04/2024 to 11/04/2025 Within 10 working days of application
We are currently taking applications for children with a date of birth between 01/04/2022 to 31/08/2022 Where possible please apply between 22/04/2024 and 10/05/2024 02/09/2024 to 21/07/2025 Week commencing 10/06/2024
It is too soon to apply for children with a date of birth between 01/09/2022 to 31/12/2022 Applications will be requested between 23/09/2024 and 11/10/2024 06/01/2025 to December 2025 Week commencing 11/11/2024
It is too soon to apply for children with a date of birth between 01/01/2023 to 31/03/2023 Applications will be requested between 20/01/2025 and 07/02/2025 28/04/2025 to Easter 2026 Week commencing 10/03/2025
It is too soon to apply for children with a date of birth between 01/04/2023 to 31/08/2023 Applications will be requested between 28/04/2024 and 12/05/2025 Sep 2025 to  July 2026 Week commencing 09/06/2025

Step 3: Apply for Flying Start childcare

If your child has the correct date of birth and you live in a Flying Start postcode, you will need to complete the Flying Start Childcare Application Form. You will need to include proof of child’s age and address.

Step 4: Eligibility approval

You will receive an email to notify you of the outcome of your application. (Refer to the table above for details of the date you will be notified)

The email only confirms your child’s eligibility and with include your child’s eligibility code, funding start date and funding end date. You then need to find a Flying Start childcare provider.

Step 5: Choose a Flying Start childcare provider

Once you have received your approval email, you now need to arrange your placement with your preferred Flying Start approved childcare setting. You will need to do this yourself, but support is available from your Early Years Worker (if you have one) or the Early Years Hub.

The funded childcare is only available at approved childcare settings who have met the required quality criteria and are contracted to provide Flying Start childcare. These include both Welsh and English medium childcare settings.

Note:  It is important to note that the number of vacancies at any Flying Start childcare setting is forever changing. This means that your preferred provider may not be able to offer your child a place. You will also need to ensure that any specific needs that your child has can be met at the setting.

For information and guidance about what to look for when choosing a childcare service please visit our Finding Childcare page.

Step 6: Your childcare provider must complete an Individual Child Placement form

Before funding can start, your chosen childcare provider will need to complete an online Individual Child Placement (ICP) Form. They will know where to access this form.

The form is used to notify us of the childcare arrangements and to request the funding.

This form will need to include your child’s eligibility code, funding start date and funding end date. These are included in your approval email.

It is important that your childcare provider completes this form with you present so both parties are clear what is being requested.

Step 7: Wait for funding approval

The funded childcare cannot start until the ICP has been approved.

Both you and your childcare provider will receive an email to confirm this. This email will include the funding Start Date, End Date and Funded Hours agreed.

This will take up to 20 working days, possibly longer during busy periods. If the form is incomplete this may also delay the process.

Making changes to your funded hours

If you wish to make a change to your funded hours (this cannot exceed 5 sessions of 2.5 hours) or end a placement early, you will need to discuss this with your childcare provider and a new ICP Form will need to be submitted.

Note:  The contractual agreement to provide childcare is between the parents/guardians and the childcare provider and should be legally enforced through the signing of a setting contract between parents/guardians and their chosen childcare provider.

Further information

If you have any queries or need support, please contact the Early Years Hub.


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