Data set from Education provision: children under 5 years of age

Headline figures

Latest data
Last updated
Number and percentage of eligible children registered for and number of providers delivering government-funded early years provision, by age and entitlement type. National timeseries back to 2015 for the 15-hour entitlement for 2-year-olds, 2011 for the 15-hour entitlement for 3 and 4-year-olds, and 2018 for the 30-hour entitlement for 3 and 4-year-olds.

Data set details

Early years
Education provision: children under 5 years of age
Release type
Geographic levels
  • Number of registered children
  • Estimate of eligible children
  • Estimated percentage of eligible children registered
  • Age and entitlement type
Time period
2011 to 2024

Data set preview

Table showing first 5 rows, from underlying data
2024Reporting yearNationalE92000001England15-hour entitlement2-year-olds1159001550007520600
2024Reporting yearNationalE92000001England15-hour entitlement3 and 4-year-olds116950012319009545900
2024Reporting yearNationalE92000001England30-hour entitlement3 and 4-year-olds361800zz35100
2023Reporting yearNationalE92000001England15-hour entitlement2-year-olds1242001680007421000
2023Reporting yearNationalE92000001England15-hour entitlement3 and 4-year-olds119600012761009446200

Variables in this data set

Table showing all 5 variables
Variable nameVariable description
ageAge and entitlement type
number_childrenNumber of registered children
number_eligible_childrenEstimate of eligible children
number_providersNumber of providers
percentage_eligible_childrenEstimated percentage of eligible children registered


  1. The estimated number of eligible 2-year-olds is derived from data supplied by the Department for Work and Pensions each November. It represents the best data available on the number of children meeting the benefit and tax credit eligibility criteria.
  2. Population estimates for 3 and 4-year-olds from 2013 onwards are likely overestimates to some extent, and therefore the derived take-up rates are likely underestimates. Therefore the 3 and 4-year-old take-up rates need to be treated with caution. The population estimates and take-up rates back to 2013 will be revised following ONS publication of a full and consistent timeseries based on Census 2021 population data. See methodology for more information.
  3. Children who split their entitlement across more than one private, voluntary or independent provider are only counted at the provider where they spend the majority of their time.
  4. Data collected in 2021 (and to a lesser extent 2022) was affected by the impact of COVID-19 uncertainty on providers and parents. Further information is available in the methodology note.

Using this data

  • Download the underlying data as a compressed ZIP file

  • View or create your own tables

    View tables that we have built for you, or create your own tables from open data using our table tool