Following a judicial review challenge brought by Matthew Gold, the government extended eligibility for free nursery places for 2-year olds to some families with No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) from September 2019 onwards.
Project 17 provided evidence for the case on issues faced by families with NRPF to support the challenge.
Separately, a second judicial review challenge was brought by Central England Law Centre on behalf of a family that had been refused asylum and were in receipt of asylum support under section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.
Two-year old children in low income families can now access free nursery places if their parent(s) fall into one of the following categories:
- Zambrano carers (non-EEA nationals who are the primary carer of a British citizen child or dependent adult) *This includes individuals who have not had their derivative right to reside formally recognised by the Home Office
- Individuals granted leave to remain with NRPF on family or private life (Article 8) grounds
- Refused asylum seekers who receive support from the Home Office under section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.
Parents who are Zambrano carers or have leave to remain with NRPF will also need to demonstrate that they meet the household income threshold of £15,400 to be eligible.
While we welcome this extension, we do not believe this change goes far enough. Many families with NRPF will still be unable to access free early years education. There have also been no changes to the extended 30 hours of funded childcare for 3 and 4 year olds, which families with NRPF are excluded from.
A briefing note on the changes produced by Matthew Gold can be downloaded here and more information on the change can be found on the NRPF Network's website.