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Special Education Needs Inclusion and Disability Access Funding

Special Educational Needs Inclusion Funding

Special Educational Needs (SEN) Inclusion Funding is for children aged 2, 3 and 4 years old accessing the free entitlements.

The fund is to support providers to better meet the needs of individual children with emerging SEN.

Spring term 2021

Summer term 2020 dates

Spring term 2021


Application deadline

Monday 30 November 2020

SEN panel meeting

Wednesday 9 December 2020

Payment processed *

Thursday 17 December 2020

Application deadline

Monday 18 January 2021

SEN panel meeting

Wednesday 27 January 2021

Payment processed *

Thursday 4 February 2021

Application deadline

Monday 1 March 2021

SEN panel meeting

Wednesday 10 March 2021

Payment processed *

Thursday 18 March 2021

*Please allow 3 working days for funds to appear in your account.

Please note these dates may be subject to change due to software updates. If this happens you will be notified through the provider portal.

Disability Access Funding

From April 2017 the government introduced the Disability Access Fund (DAF), to support access to free entitlements for children with disabilities or Special Educational Needs (SEN).

The purpose of the fund is to support early years providers to make reasonable adjustments and build the capacity of their setting to support children with disabilities. The funding cannot be used towards childcare fees.

Information provided by the Department for Education (DfE) about the Disability Access Fund can be found in the early years entitlements operational guide.


Three and four year olds will be eligible for the DAF if they meet the following criteria:

Children become eligible for free early education at different points in the year depending when they turn three. Please see below:

DAF eligibility dates

Born between:

Eligible from (following third birthday)

1 April to 31 August

1 September (Autumn term)

1 September to 31 December

1 January (Spring term)

1 January and 31 March

1 April (Summer term)

Four year olds in primary school reception classes are not eligible for DAF funding.

Contact information

Early Years Team

Make an enquiry