Young children with teacher

Under 5s

Our aim is to ensure that Reading’s young children have the best start in life with easy access to maternity, health, education and support services.

Advice for schools and nurseries


Early Years’ Service has a duty to secure sufficient childcare for working parents, for funded 2 year olds, and all 3–4 year olds, they are required to report annually to the elected council members on how they are meeting their duty to secure sufficient childcare, and make this report available and accessible.

Sufficiency reports can be found here.

Becoming a childminder

Starting a new setting

Business support

Childminder briefing

Ofsted registration process

Business Advice Service

Introduction to Childminding course


Ofsted registration process

Taxfree childcare funding


Taxfree childcare funding


Childcare vouchers are a Government-approved, tax-efficient way for parents to use to pay for childcare. Providers can register with the relevant scheme to accept these payments; they are able to register for more than one scheme. Parents will need the provider’s Ofsted registration number and the reference number of the childcare voucher scheme.

Taxfree childcare

Tax-free childcare is a Government-approved, tax-efficient way for parents to use to pay for childcare. Registered providers are able to sign up to receive payments directly into their bank accounts and will receive an 11 digit code from HMRC to use when setting up their account.

Providers are able to accept funds from both schemes.


In order to accept the early years funding, providers must complete a Provider’s Agreement and abide by the terms. The Early Years team can support you with this on your annual compliance visit.

Business advice service

The Early Years and Childcare sector continues to operate under the spotlight, with providers facing increasing challenges to remain sustainable. Government funding and delivery models are changing, and the expectations of Ofsted and parents are continually rising, driving settings to push for improvements in quality and outcomes for their children.

In order to provide support in these changing times, members of the Early Years Team have completed a Level 5 Award in Business Support as part of the Childcare Business Advisers Programme which is accredited by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), the UK’s leading professional body for managers, consultants and business advisers. The Business Support Skills route ensures the ability to support settings with their business planning and advise them on sustainability issues.

Bespoke packages are available to purchase upon request, prices are based upon individual requirements.


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