Registering your Child for Early Learning and Childcare

Find your local Early Learning and Childcare Provider

How to register your child into Early Learning and Childcare

Children born between 1st March 2019 and 28th February 2020 are eligible for funded Early Learning and Childcare from August 2022.

Online ELC registration for 2022-2023 is now closed.  Late applications should be submitted directly to your first choice ELC setting.  A copy of the ELC application form for 2022-2023 is available HERE

Read our Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any queries, please contact the Early Years helpline on Tel: 01369 708503 or your preferred ELC setting.

Registering for or changing your child's provider

  • If you require to change/cancel your child's funded Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) placement please provide 4 weeks written notice to the Funded Provider of ELC.
  • If you require to make a change to your child’s Early Learning and Childcare provider and are unable to give 4 weeks written notice due to unforeseen circumstances you must contact the Early Years helpline on 01369 708503 or explaining the reason for your request.
  • To register your child for Early Learning and Childcare outwith registration week, please contact your provider of choice who will advise you further.
  • Download a copy of the Early Learning and Childcare Information for Parents Guide

If you wish to register a late application for session 2021/22, please contact your first choice of ELC setting or call the Early Years helpline Tel: 01369 708503.

Cross boundary requests

A parent who lives in the Argyll and Bute Council area who wishes to access Early Learning and Childcare in another authority should contact that authority or if you require further guidance please contact the Early Years helpline on 01369 708503.


  • Early Learning and Childcare provision has no entitlement to transport.
  • We are not obliged to provide transport, however, we recognise the unique rural nature of Argyll and Bute and transport may be available in exceptional circumstances.
  • Following registration, parents who have exceptional transport difficulties should telephone the helpline on 01369 708503.
  • Assistance with transport is considered for the current school year only i.e.  a new request must be made for subsequent school years. 

Deferred entry to school - additional year of Early Learning and Childcare

Deferring your child’s entry to Primary One

If your child is still age 4 on the day they would usually start primary 1, you’ve got the right to delay (or defer) when they start primary school. This means they can start school the following year, when they’re 5.

In the current system, the youngest children (those with a January or February birth date) are automatically entitled to an additional year of funded early learning and childcare (ELC) at their nursery, childminder or playgroup, when they defer P1 entry. Those with an August to December birthday can still defer their school start, but have to apply to the local authority to request funded early learning and childcare for that year. Local authorities should make this decision based on the needs of your child.

What’s changing?

Currently, it is up to councils whether to fund ELC for children born between August and December who defer entry to primary one.

Argyll and Bute Council are part of a small number of local authorities who will be piloting deferred entry changes from August 2021, to help to plan for the full roll out in August 2023.  This means that (for all children born August-February) if you decide to defer your child’s entry into P1 until the following year you will automatically receive an extra year of funded ELC

The pilot projects will help better understand how many parents decide to take up the offer of a further year of funded ELC - ahead of it becoming a universal right from August 2023.

When do I need to decide/apply?

You need to indicate that you wish to apply for a deferred entry to P1 on the P1 application form.

Due to Covid-19 Primary 1 registration took place online during week commencing 17th January 2022, register your child for school here.

School Registration, questions and answers.

Further Information

You can speak directly to your child’s keyworker to help make a decision on what is best for your child and things to consider for your child.  

You can also visit