2 year old places

Early Years 2

The Scottish Government is making changes to early learning and childcare provision.  Over a quarter of all two-year-olds will be entitled to 600 hours a year of free early learning and childcare.

These changes will help young children whose parents or carers receive specific qualifying benefits.  It will help them gain vital language and learning skills, improving their social development so they'll do better at school when the time comes.

Who's Eligible

Two-year-old children are eligible for 600 hours a year of free early learning and childcare if their parent or carer receives:-

  • Income Support (IS)
  • Jobseekers Allowance (income based)
  • Any income related element of Employment and Support Allowance
  • Incapacity Benefit or Severe Disablement Allowance
  • State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit (CTC), but not Working Tax Credit and your annual income is less the £16,105*
  • Both Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit and your annual income is less than £7,320
  • Universal Credit - where your maximum monthly income from employment does not exceed £610, as shown on your monthly Universal Credit statement.
  • Support under part VI of the immigration and Asylum Act 1999

OR they are :

  • Looked after by the local council (children aged two or over or have been at any point since turning two)
  • Under a kinship care order by the local council (children aged two or over or have been at any point since turning two)
  • With a Parent Appointed Guardian (children aged two or over or have been at any point since turning two)


*This applies to children who have turned two on or after 1st March 2015.
*The income for Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit can vary annually.


Eligible children can attend nursery for five morning or five afternoon sessions a week. Each session lasts approximately 3 hours 10 minutes.

If you think you qualify under the related benefits criteria you can contact an Early Years Establishment or Early Years Services to find to the Establishment within the authority who offer this service. You then have to provide proof of benefit’s in the form of an award letter or authorise Inverclyde Council to verify your qualifying benefits before any place will be allocated or commence.  We will always try to allocate your child a place in the area closest to your home however this cannot always be possible or guaranteed.

When can my 2 year old child begin nursery?

There are 3 Intakes across the year.

Your 2 year old child will become eligible for a place in the term either following their 2nd birthday, or in the term after you begin to receive the qualifying benefit(s):

Birthday Dates


Intake Month

Admission Timeline

2 year old children whose parents are in receipt of qualifying benefits - Admission Intake Timeline

1st March – 31st August



At start of term in August and before last day of August

1st September– 31st December



At start of term in January and before the 3rd week of January

1st January  – Last day of February



After Easter Term before 1st day of May *

*This may be subject to change depending on when Easter Holidays fall each year.

If you require any further information, or to find out if your child is eligible for a funded Early Learning and Childcare Place please contact Inverclyde Council's Early Years Service on 01475717171 or visit the Scottish Family Information Website www.families.scot/

Page last updated: 27 June 2019