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Ducklings Fee Policy




Ducklings Fees Policy


Date of policy January 2024

Date reviewed by the Governing



Member of staff responsible in

Cerne Abbas CE VC First School

Alex Ryan
Review dateSpring 2025



Charges and Services

Fees - £5.00 per hour     Morning session 8.45 am – 12.00  = £16.25

(Lunch 12.00 to 1.00 pm = £5.00 – bring own lunch or parents to order hot and pay through Local Food Links)

  (Afternoon Session 1.00 – 3.00 pm = £10.00) 

WHOLE DAY - £31.25




15 hours per week funding


All three and four year olds are entitled to 15 hours per week of free nursery education for 38 weeks of the year from the term following their third birthday.  If parents wish their child to attend for additional sessions they will be charged £5.00 per additional hour.


Children whose 3rd birthday is betweenWill become eligible for 15 hours funding
1st April to 31st AugustSeptember - Autumn Term
1st September to 31st DecemberJanuary - Spring Term
1st January to 31st MarchApril - Summer Term


All parents get up to 15 hours funded childcare per week for 3 and 4 year olds.


30 hours funded childcare

You could get up to 30 hours funded childcare in total if you and your partner (if you have one) work full or part-time hours.

You could still be eligible, even if you're on maternity, paternity or adoption leave, or if you're unable to work. 

Check the full eligibility criteria to find out what you can claim.

You can get up to 30 hours funded childcare the term after your child's third birthday if you're eligible and apply before the deadline. This means it would start either in January, April or September. 

You can continue to claim the funding for funded childcare until your child starts school. If you choose to defer your child's school place, you can continue to claim until your child reaches compulsory school age (the term following their fifth birthday). 

When to apply

Find the date you can apply from in this table:

Eligibility dates for 3 and 4 year old funded childcare

Must be 3 years old byDate child is eligible for funding fromRecommended time to apply
31st December1st January (Spring Term)15th October to 30th November
31st March1st April (Summer Term)15th January to 28th February
31st August1st September (Autumn Term)15th June to 31st July








You can apply for funded childcare funding for 3 and 4 year olds 16 weeks before your child's third birthday. We recommend you apply no more than 3 months before you're eligible to claim.

You must apply in good time to take your eligibility code to your childcare provider before the deadline. Many parents applying for 30 hours funded childcare will get a reply straightaway to say if they're eligible. Some parents will need to provide more information for their application.

Reconfirm your eligibility

You must reconfirm your eligibility every 3 months if you're claiming 30 hours' funded childcare. You must do this 3 months from the date you applied, even if you haven't started claiming. 

Can you claim other funding at the same time?

If you're eligible, you can claim through other funding schemes at the same time, including:

Find out which funding schemes work best for your family with the online childcare calculator.

Tel: 0300 123 4097
Full contact details


Charges and Services

Invoicing: Fees will be invoiced monthly in advance. Payment is due within 14 days from receipt of invoice, or the invoice date if later. 

Payment: can be made by bank transfer or by cheque. Cheques should be made payable to Cerne Abbas CE VC First School

Childcare Vouchers can also be used – please speak to Alex Ryan, Finance and Business Manager to arrange this. 

Parents are requested to use their child’s name as reference for any payments made.

Fees are reviewed on an annual basis in April to take effect in the following academic year.

Bookings are made by session on a booking form termly  and charged at a set session rate - as described above.

A minimum booking of 2 full days is required or 12 1/2 hrs per week.

If a child is collected late *consistently without a good cause the school can issue a penalty  invoice for each part of 15 minutes that the child remains at the setting at a rate of £20 per hour.  *This is at the discretion of the school but would be more than five times in a half term.

Once a half term has started, parents are committed to paying for all the agreed sessions, irrespective of their use of them until the end of that half term.  Half a terms notice is required.

Payment is expected in full within 2 weeks of receipt of your invoice.  There is no charge made for INSET days and your invoice will be reduced accordingly.  There is no requirement for us to offer an alternative date but we endeavour to be flexible if possible.

Arrangements can be made for families to pay on a weekly basis in agreement with the Business Manager.

Additional weekly hours above the 15 hours are not charged for Bank Holidays and INSET days – bills will illustrate this.  Unfortunately we are unable to offer alternative sessions on these weeks.


Absences, Illness and Cancellation 


Fees are still payable for the time of absence even in the case of contagious illnesses.

The school office should be notified of any holidays, however fees will still be due for the time of absence.

The school office should be notified of any absence prior to the start of the session. If the school has not heard of any absence we will attempt to make contact with the family to explain the absence.

Absence is monitored by the Headteacher, repeated absences may result in a meeting with the family to discuss attendance.

If a child has not attended for 2 weeks without explanation, their place may be forfeited. Every effort to make contact with the family will be made before this decision is made.

Fees will still be due for emergency closure of the setting - for example closure due to snow.


Late and Non-Payment Procedure


Payment is expected in full within 2 weeks of receipt of your invoice unless another arrangement has been made with the school.

If payment is not received by the end of the 3rd week, a reminder shall be given verbally.

Parents who have made arrangements to pay on a weekly basis will also receive reminders stating what the balance due is at junctures listed in this policy. These reminders will not affect their credit rating with us, provided payments are still being made at the agreed times.

If payment is not made in full at this juncture, parents will be invited to come and discuss the situation with the Headteacher. Every effort will be made to put the parents at ease. In consultation with them,  a payment plan will be agreed and signed and that will be designed expressly to be affordable and prevent any undue hardship to them or their family but that will settle their outstanding balance in a reasonable time period. Consequences of non-payment without explanation will be made clear.

These payment plans may, with the agreement of both parties, be reviewed and amended to reflect changing circumstances.

In an attempt to prevent an increase in the debt, any unfunded sessions will be withdrawn until the balance is settled.

If payment in full is not received by the end of half term of the invoice date (without any further payment being made) the child’s place will be limited to their 15 hours funded place.

If payment plans are broken with no communication the child’s place may be forfeited.

Additional Information

Disability Access Fund

Three and four-year old children may be eligible for the DAF if they meet the following criteria:

  • The child is in receipt of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and
  • The child receives universal or extended free early education and childcare entitlement.

The DAF is payable as a lump sum once a year per eligible child.

Funding is paid at the fixed annual rate of £800 per eligible child.

Early years pupil premium funding

Your childcare provider may be able to get the funding if you receive one of the following benefits:

  • Income support
  • Income based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Income related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit (as long as you're not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
  • Working Tax Credit Run-on, paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit and earn no more than £7,400 a year
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit

You may also be eligible if your child:

  • has been looked after by the local authority in care for at least one day
  • has been adopted from care
  • has left care through special guardianship
  • is subject to a child arrangement order

If you think you are eligible, we can apply for the funding.


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