Nursery places for 2 year olds

Apply to nursery for a 2 year old and find out if your child qualifies for a funded place.

Early years staff teaching pupils

Qualifying for a funded nursery place

Your child may get a funded nursery place if you get one of these benefits:

  • Income support
  • Job Seekers Allowance (income based)
  • Employment Support Allowance (income based)
  • Incapacity benefit or Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit, but not Working Tax Credit, and your income is less than £19,995
  • Both maximum Child Tax Credit and maximum Working Tax Credit, and your income is less than £9,552 (subject to change)
  • Universal Credit where your maximum monthly earned income is £796 a month or less
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • The child is looked after. This includes under a kinship care order or with a parent appointed guardian
  • A need is identified (allocated through Early Years Intervention Group)
  • You have older children who get free school meals you may also qualify for a funded nursery place if you have a 2 year old

We'll ask you to provide proof of your benefits so that we know that you're eligible. This should be included with your application form.

What you qualify for

If your child qualifies for a funded place, you get up to 1140 hours of nursery care a year from August 2024.

Within our family centres, this works out at:

  • 23 hours and 45 minutes per week over 48 weeks, or;-
  • 30 hours per week over 38 weeks term time

Funded providers like private nurseries and childminders may be able to offer more flexible ways to use these hours.

Nursery start date

Your child should start in the term following their 2nd birthday. The nursery will confirm this date nearer your child's birthday.

BirthdayStart date
1 March to 31 AugustAugust term
1 September to 31 DecemberJanuary term
1 January to end FebruaryApril term

Priority groups

GroupDetailsFree place


  • households where parents get qualifying benefits
  • children in need of protection (including kinship care)
  • children with additional support needs assessed by psychological services
2East Renfrewshire children who don't qualify under priority 1This will be charged at £4.40 per hour.
3Children who don't live in East RenfrewshireThis will be charged at £4.40 per hour.

Early Learning and Childcare setting

We have 7 Early Learning and Childcare settings which provide early learning and childcare for 2 year olds.

  • Arthurlie Family Centre
  • Cart Mill Family Centre
  • Glen Family Centre
  • Isobel Mair Family Centre (children with additional support needs only)
  • Madras Family Centre
  • McCready Family Centre
  • St. John's Primary Nursery Class

Funded providers

We work in partnership with some private and voluntary nurseries and childminders. We may offer you a place at one these partnership providers.

How to apply

You can apply 12 weeks before your child turns 2.

Complete a nursery place for a 2 year old application form.

What happens next?

We'll assess your application against admissions criteria.

As places for 2 year olds are limited we allocate places in line with priority groups. 

If you're applying for a paid place you may also wish to consider applying directly to a childminder or private nursery who may be able to accommodate your child, each provider will have their own daily/hourly rate.

Offer of nursery place

We'll write to you to tell you if we can offer you a nursery place.

If we can, we'll ask you to take these documents to the nursery:

  • Proof of child's age
  • Proof of current address

If you don't qualify for a funded nursery place

You can apply for a chargeable nursery place but places are very limited and we may not be able to offer your child a placement.

Read the ELC Chargeable hours contract - terms and conditions (PDF) [225KB]

Last modified on 4 June 2024