There is a variety of support available to help with the cost of childcare as highlighted below:
Most employers are offer support for childcare through childcare voucher schemes. This is a salary sacrifice system of up to £55 per week per parent. The money comes directly off your salary before deductions, giving you savings on tax and National Insurance contributions.
In return, you will be given a voucher or e-voucher that is given to your nursery and is deducted from your bill. A number of childcare voucher providers offer this service to companies, and some now have online systems. You should ask your employer if they offer this. If you receive tax credits the amount you are eligible for may be affected by using childcare vouchers.
If your child is aged between two and three years, and you are on a low income, not working and receive benefits, your child could receive 15 hours of free nursery education. This is called 'Free for 2's" and you can apply through https://www.haringey.gov.uk/children-and-families/childcare-and-early-years/childcare-costs/free-early-education/free-early-learning-two-year-olds.
You can watch a video promoting the Free for 2's from Haringey Council. https://www.haringey.gov.uk/children-and-families/childcare-and-early-years/help-childcare-costs/free-early-learning-education/free-for-2s-videos
If your child is aged between three and five, then you are entitled to 15 hours of free nursery education for 38 weeks of the year in the term following their third birthday. This means your three, four or five year old can go to nursery for 15 hours a week (for 38 weeks) free of charge. You will have to apply separately to see if you are eligible for the 30 hours. Your eligibility depends on: if you are working, how much you earn, your child's circumstances and your nationality.
You can apply for this through HMRC: https://www.gov.uk/30-hours-free-childcare
We will discuss with you the sessions and days we are able to offer and your child will need to be signed up by the beginning of the term before the headcount form is submitted to the local authority. You will also need to check the term dates for the weeks which the 15/30 hours does not cover. If you require childcare through the half terms or holiday period, you will have to pay for this service.
You may be entitled to financial support such as Child Tax Credit or Working Tax Credit if you are on a low income and dependent on your circumstances. For more information contact the Tax Credit Helpline on 0845 300 3900 or visit http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/taxcredits/start/who-qualifies/children/childcare-costs.htm
Help for students with children
If you are studying at college or university and have children, you can get extra financial help while you study. For more guidance go to www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance or contact your college or university.