More than 9,400 registered childcare providers including school, football, art and tennis clubs have signed up in the South East.
Parents, including the self-employed, can apply online for Tax-Free Childcare – part of the government’s Childcare Choices offer – for children who are under 12.
Tax-Free Childcare will cut childcare costs for working families by up to £2,000 per child per year, or £4,000 for disabled children. For every £8 parents pay into their childcare account the government will add an extra £2, up to £2,000 per child per year.
The money can go towards a whole range of regulated childcare including nurseries, childminders, after school clubs or holiday clubs. Parents can find out what help is available on the Childcare Choices website www.childcarechoices.gov.uk. This website includes a Childcare Calculator (www.gov.uk/childcare-calculator) that compares all the government’s childcare offers to check what works best for individual families.
Once eligible parents have opened their new account they can start paying their childcare provider straightaway, using the government contribution.
Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said:
“School holidays like Easter are great fun for kids but working parents can need help with childcare.
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“Tax-Free Childcare can be used to cut the stress and bills for parents, and there are lots of brilliant holiday clubs and childcare providers to help parents over the Easter holiday.
“Our message to eligible families across the UK is sign up now and save on your childcare costs.”