Free early learning for three and four year olds
Free early learning places are available for all three and four year olds across Royal Greenwich at:
- private and independent nurseries
- pre-school playgroups
- children's centres, nursery schools or nursery classes of primary schools
- some registered child minders who have been specially accredited.
This page is about free early learning for three and four year olds. Find out about free early learning for two year olds.
Places are flexible and are available for 15 hours a week, 38 weeks a year. Some working families may be eligible for 30 hours a week.
How free early learning works
If your child is eligible for free early learning, your provider (for example, the nursery) will claim the funding for the free hours on your child's behalf.
There are different ways you can use your 15 or 30 hours entitlement, and you don't need to keep to one provider. If you are claiming 30 hours entitlement, you will need to renew your eligibility code every 3 months.
It is important to check eligibility in the term before you want to take up a place and check with your provider before the term ends if they have a place available.
Check and renew before 31 August for a place starting in September, 31 December for a place starting in January and 31 March for place starting in April.
Early learning places are free at the point of delivery so you shouldn't be charged in advance for your place.
Three year olds can get free early education places at specific dates after their third birthday. Use the table below to check when your child is eligible.
|Date of birth
|When they become eligible
|Between 1 April and 31 August
|1 September following their third birthday
|Between 1 September and 31 December
|1 January following their third birthday
|Between 1 January and 31 March
|1 April following their third birthday