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Charging For A Child Eligible For Funding....


mps09
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Hi folks - hope someone can share their expert knowledge of these things....

 

I had a prospective parent come into pre-school yesterday with a child who turned 3 in January.

 

The child currently attends a maintained nursery class at another local school, but she has been told that they don't have any free spaces available and so, while the child attends the same sessions as the nursery children and occupies the same space she is known as a 'day care child' and mum is charged for her sessions.

 

This sounds very odd to me and I didn't think we were allowed to charge for sessions within the 5 session entitlement.

 

Any thoughts? We are in Oxfordshire if that makes a difference!

 

Many thanks,#

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Perhaps this nursery has decided to limit the amount of free places they offer - so that they can charge what they like for the others - this is something I wondered a few years ago if it was do-able, could be a loophole nobody has plugged yet.

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I echo Narnias reply. You cannot charge for a child that is entitled to a 15 hour free place

The setting needs reporting to Early Years

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I don't think you can limit the 'free' places either, because, of course they are not free, we are being paid for them, even if the payment doesn't match up to your charges.The only way you could limit numbers is if you have reached the limit for the number of staff you have,but you then cannot accept the child and charge, but either way, you absolutely cannot charge a child who falls within the grant age.

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Perhaps this nursery has decided to limit the amount of free places they offer - so that they can charge what they like for the others - this is something I wondered a few years ago if it was do-able, could be a loophole nobody has plugged yet.

 

 

If they are 'upfront' and tell parent they haven't a funded place left - then the parent chooses either to pay to attend .....or....to look elsewhere for a funded place???

 

Not sure if I'd be happy though - especially in a maintained setting!!!!

 

If this is acceptable - I can see my owner only offering 2 funded places!! :oxD:(:(:(

Edited by louby loo
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Could it be that they have been given their grant allocation for this term and there's no way of getting the entitlement for this child for this term, It's my understanding that some Counties don't allow for children joining mid-term and parents would pay for that place until the start of the next term. In some other Counties this would be 'caught up' in the next term, if the setting has claimed, ours falls into this category.

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I had my nef contract through a couple of weeks for the new year and they asked me to state how many funded places I was offering out of the 26!? I thought this was a bit strange as I assumed all of them!!? But there was the option to specify how many funded and how many non funded?

This probably doesn't help much!!

 

Kris

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If a child starts after the headcount week, you have to give them a free place if you have space (ie, if you have enough staff to cover the ratios), you can only start to claim for them for the next term, BUT you can ask a previous provider, who has claimed for the child ( eg, if they move to a new setting after they've been counted in at another group), for the portion of the grant that would now be due to you IF you could claim, if that makes sense?? However, it is up to each group to decide wether or not to pass on any money.....they can, and in my experience, most do, refuse to share it.

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I had my nef contract through a couple of weeks for the new year and they asked me to state how many funded places I was offering out of the 26!? I thought this was a bit strange as I assumed all of them!!? But there was the option to specify how many funded and how many non funded?

This probably doesn't help much!!

 

Kris

 

 

Yes this is the very kind of statements they use which are ambiguous. Do they really mean to say that of the 26 places you are registered for, how many will be taking up their entitlement.

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This is really interesting - if it is a maintained setting how do they actually raise an invoice and accept payment? I didn't think maintained settings had the ability to charge. I'm sure one of our nursery heads said (in connection with the 15 hour entitlement) that it was something to do with one of the Eduation Acts.

 

It sounds as if all the facts of this case aren't clear - if I were mum I'd be asking for clarification!

 

Maz

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I had my nef contract through a couple of weeks for the new year and they asked me to state how many funded places I was offering out of the 26!? I thought this was a bit strange as I assumed all of them!!? But there was the option to specify how many funded and how many non funded?

This probably doesn't help much!!

 

Kris

 

Do they mean how many are eligable for funding ? we are registered for 24 -but not all our children will be funded due to their age ?

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Do they mean how many are eligable for funding ? we are registered for 24 -but not all our children will be funded due to their age ?

 

It's not to do with the children we already have on our books, it's actually asking how many spaces we are prepared to offer to funded children!? Doesn't make much sense does it!! The only thing I can think of is that the Pre-School is actually my own and registered as a Ltd company, maybe I get to pick and choose although I doubt it!!! :o

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During recent discussions about how we will deliver the 15 hour entitlement it came to light that groups in a neighbouring authority are limiting the number of places available for children who only want to access their free entitlement.

 

Our advisers were not sure this was in the spirit of the code of practice, and were going to check.

 

We haven't heard anything about it yet!

 

Maz

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Perhaps it's me being thick here!! But if settings have spaces why would they not want funded children!! Am I missing something here, the way I look at it is there are no invoices to chase, no constant reminders to late payers, and if i have a parent who has to pay for the space i only charge the same as the funded amount anyway!! Perhaps I dont have the right attitude to run the Pre-School as a business, as long as the children/staff/parents are happy and I can pay my rent and salaries I'm happy!! Maybe I need to get my mean head on!!

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Perhaps it's me being thick here!! But if settings have spaces why would they not want funded children!!

In my case that would be because the hourly rate of funding doesn't cover my hourly fees! :o

 

Maz

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Perhaps it's me being thick here!! But if settings have spaces why would they not want funded children!! Am I missing something here, the way I look at it is there are no invoices to chase, no constant reminders to late payers, and if i have a parent who has to pay for the space i only charge the same as the funded amount anyway!! Perhaps I dont have the right attitude to run the Pre-School as a business, as long as the children/staff/parents are happy and I can pay my rent and salaries I'm happy!! Maybe I need to get my mean head on!!

 

some settings charge more per child than the funding amount iyswim?

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if a NEF elidgable child starts mid term then the setting is still suposed to offer a free place to the child even if its too late for the setting claim the funding, provided that the setting does not need to employ additional staff to cover the additional child.

if the child has started mid term and the staff ratios dont cover that child then maybe the child will have to pay but its worth checking because as far as I was aware we arent supose to charge eligable children provided that the child isnt claiming their funding in another setting

 

I didnt know you could limit the number of nef places?

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some settings charge more per child than the funding amount iyswim?

I do see what you mean - but my guess is that these settings won't be the ones who are restricting the number of funded places. As you said, that wouldn't make any sense.

 

Maz

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I wonder if the charge is because the headcount data has been done for this term ? I had a family today ask me for a free place for a 3 year old which I have given them from Monday as I have space, but I will have to give 5 weeks of free education for this child as I am too late to claim this term.

 

The family had come from Poland so I can't claim on another nursery.

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I wonder if the charge is because the headcount data has been done for this term ?

 

That was my first thought too - but mum said that she started in Jan (after her birthday) so should have been included in EAster headcount.....

 

Interesting discussions!

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Yes, as I said above, so would we, and we'd get it the following term. It's a puzzling situation this, why wasn't she counted in the Easter count? Perhaps the nursery assume she's having sessions elsewhere, but that doesn't make sense either as presumably it would be on her booking form.......

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We charge twins who have had to remain in the toddler room since turning 3 in March because there is no space in the preschool. I'm not sure if this is correct to be honest (I only started 2 months ago lol)

 

I wonder, could we have claimed funding for them even though they remain in the toddler room? Since they're all following EYFS anyways.

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We charge twins who have had to remain in the toddler room since turning 3 in March because there is no space in the preschool. I'm not sure if this is correct to be honest (I only started 2 months ago lol)

 

I wonder, could we have claimed funding for them even though they remain in the toddler room? Since they're all following EYFS anyways.

 

i would of thought you could claim funding from the april term -as they were 3 then ?

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I'd agree that the twins should still be eligable for funding as your still caring for them and providing the EYFS I cannt see that there is anywhere that says that funding depends on which room the children are in?

 

I am puzzled by why children are missing out or rather the parents are missing out on the finacial help.

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The twins should have been counted in the Easter headcount despite not being able to move out of the two year old room - is there no way they can spend some time with the 3+ children if numbers allow - seems a shame they are being 'held back' because of numbers ?

We can do a late claim for children who arrive after headcount ( assuming there is cash left in the budget ) and it will still be the same for us under SFF just that we will have to wait longer for the cash. I would rather have funded children than fee paying as others have said as it's a lot less hassle than chasing fees etc, but my LA is pretty generous compared with some and we get a good amount of funding, so I suppose we are lucky. :o

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