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Thinking about becoming a childminder?

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As a registered Childminder you will look after one or more children under the age of 8 for more than a total of two hours a day, in your own home, for payment.

You will work to various legal requirements, and be inspected by Ofsted to ensure you provide a safe and stimulating environment for the children that you care for.

You will usually be self employed and running your own business. Hours are flexible and you can choose to work full or part time depending on your own family commitments.

What qualities are needed to be a good childminder?

  • An understanding of how children learn, develop and how their individual needs can be met effectively.
  • An ability to work in partnership with parents/carers and other professional agencies in order to meet the child’s needs.
  • An ability to run your own business by keeping good records to ensure that you meet the Ofsted registration requirements and your business’ viability.
  • A commitment to professional development which will include attending on-going training mostly in the evening.
  • Good understanding and use of English in order to ensure the well-being of the children in your care.

Although everyday will be different, a typical day may include:

  • Taking children to and from school, nursery or clubs.
  • Visiting a park, museum, library or playgroup.
  • Providing meals and snacks for the children, involving them
    in food preparation and menu choices.
  • Arranging fun and stimulating learning activities, such as
    dressing up, creative play and reading.
  • Working with other local childminders to organise group

Becoming a registered Childminder in Sandwell

Step by Step Guide:

Step 1

    To obtain a Childminder Information Pack download, complete and return the Application for Childminder Induction Programme form and Childminder Briefing Session Form via email to:

    Step 2

    Attend a Childminding Briefing Session 

    Contact will be made regarding the briefing sessions once application forms have been received.   

    Briefing sessions currently take place online so access to the internet is essential

    Next Briefing Session 

    Step 3

    Attend a Childminding Preparation Course (CPC).  This will give you the skills and knowledge you require to complete your Ofsted application and start your childminding career.

    Step 4

    Attend a Paediatric First Aid, Safeguarding Children and Food Safety Level 2 Course

    Step 5

    Complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Police Check through the Ofsted portal.

    Step 6

    Complete the Ofsted application and Health Declaration forms

    Step 7

    Prepare for your Ofsted Inspection Visit - Ofsted will contact you to arrange an inspector to visit your home.

    Step 8

    Pay your Ofsted Registration Fee.  Then once you have got your Ofsted certificate (between 3 and 6 months while the checks and inspectors visit are made) and Public Liability Insurance, you can start work as a childminder.

      Sandwell Early Years and Childcare Services have developed a guide to Thinking about becoming a Childminder to help you decide if its the career for you.

      How much will it cost?

      Like any new venture, there are start-up costs involved in becoming a childminder. These figures are for illustration purposes only, but will help you understand how much the process is likely to cost.

      • Childminding Preparation Course, costs vary anywhere between £80-£240.
      • Disclosure and Barring Service check, from £52.10 (includes admin fees etc) plus optional annual renewal fee (currently £13) 
      • 12 hour Paediatric first aid course, costs vary from £40 to £180
      • Food Hygiene Level 2, costs vary
      • Health Declaration check, costs from £35 depending on your doctor's fees
      • Ofsted registration fee £35
      • Public liability insurance, costs vary depending on insurer
      • Toys and resources to support play, learning and development
      • Safety equipment for your house e.g. stair gates, fire blanket etc

      Is there anything else I need to know?

      As a registered childminder you will be self-employed and must register with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) within three months of starting workTax advice HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) have produced an e-learning package with tax advice for childminders, which you can work through at your own pace. They have also created a ready reckoner to help you budget for your first tax bill, and a range of free record keeping apps.

      If you provide food for the children you care for, you need to think about food hygiene as it is your responsibility to make sure that the food you provide is fit to eat.  There is more information available on the Foods Standards Agency website.  New data sharing arrangements between Ofsted and the Food Standards Agency means that Ofsted will share relevant childminders registration data with Local Authority food teams.  Childminders who are already registered with Ofsted are no longer required to register as a food business with their local authority.

      For further information contact Sandwell Family Information Service