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How to apply for free early education


Before making an application for the free early education for two year olds, please read the following:


  1. Check to see if you fall into of the eligible criteria

  2. If you feel you meet the criteria you will need to register on the Citizen Portal and then submit an application through the portal.  

  3. You will need your National Insurance number or Asylum Seekers reference number. 

  4. If you are receiving Disability Living Allowance for the child, you will need to provide documentary evidence.

  5. The application will be processed by matching the information you have given against the records held by the Government's Eligibility Checking Service and a decision will be given immediately and a confirmation letter will be in your inbox on the Citizen Portal.
  6. Places can only be taken at a setting that has been approved to offer the free two year old places.  View the Approved Provider list


Make an Application

To make an application, you must first register an account with the Citizen Portal.  Once you have created your account, you will be able to make your application through the portal.  



Lost eligibility confirmation

If you have misplaced your confirmation of eligibility, log in to your Citizen Portalaccount to retrieve your confirmation and eligibility code.



Further support

A user guide is available to support users to manage their Citizen Portal account. 


If you do not have access to the internet, visit your local library to use a computer free of charge.