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Childcare Providers Reminder

Information, resources and regular news updates for childcare providers in Sandwell

Latest News


Early Years Newsletter Winter 2022 

Latest newsletter has lots of information for early years practitioners in Sandwell.

Library Story Time             BookTrust Story Time

storytime_invitation_page_1.jpg       btst-1200-image-1.jpg

*Courses and Training*

Trusted Adult Training Course

Trusted Adult Training is for all staff working with children and young people in Sandwell. The training looks at supporting children’s mental health and well-being.

CYP Psychological First Aid

A free 3-week course produced by Public Health England to help you to explore the techniques of psychological first aid (PFA), the globally recommended training for supporting people during emergencies. You’ll focus on children and young people’s mental health, and what you can do to help them cope and access the support they need during and after emergencies and crisis situations. 

*Latest Public Health Advice*

Temporary suspension of confirmatory PCR Test

From Tuesday 11th January in England

  •  people without symptoms who receive positive lateral flow results for COVID-19 will be required to self-isolate immediately and won’t be required to take a confirmatory PCR test.
  •  people with symptoms should continue to isolate and book a PCR test as before

Self Isolation Guidance

This is a temporary measure while COVID-19 rates remain high across the UK.

*Sandwell Public Health Guidance January 2022*

There is no need to report all individual cases to Sandwell Public Health (staff or children) – unless it is an extremely high number or there is a particular issue of concern i.e. vulnerable child/staff member.

Early Years providers should still contact Sandwell Public Health if they are worried, or if numbers are increasing dramatically and they need advice.

DfE helpline 0800 046 8687 option 1 for public health advice

All settings should follow the latest guidance which was updated in December 2021

Actions for early years and childcare providers during the Covid 19 pandemic

Contingency Framework: education and childcare settings

All settings should ensure they have a contingency plan to cover how they would operate if any of the measures described in the Contingency Framework were recommended for their setting or area by the Director of Public Health.

Nursery managers should make decisions about whether face to face settings can remain open if staff ratios are insufficient.

Winter Infections Resources 

Essential support for dealing with outbreaks of COVID-19, flu, Norovirus and diarrhoea and vomiting


Latest Government advice on Coronavirus

Managing coronavirus (COVID-19) in education and childcare settings

Updated  contingency framework ahead of the autumn term, in line with wider government guidelines. 

The updated framework includes the new thresholds at which you might consider seeking public health advice and taking further action to reinforce measures already in place, updates to the circumstances in which local health protection teams or directors of public health might recommend you introduce some additional measures, and annexed guidance for managing cases in settings from 23 August.

Getting Tested  

Government guidance on coronavirus testing, including who is eligible for a test and how to get tested.

Sandwell Covid-19 Testing

The options for getting tested for Covid-19 in Sandwell

Sandwell Local Restrictions latest Government rules for Sandwell 

Actions for early years and childcare providers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

IMPORTANT Reminder – Who to Contact if there is a confirmed case of COVID.

Confirmed Covid cases within your setting need to be communicated via Report a serious childcare incident

DfE Helpline 0800 046 8687  select Option 1 for advice on the action to take in response to a positive case.

National Restrictions Guidance available in translation

Information and Reminders


Codes are only issued with ELT and 30 hours applications. Providers should not advise parents taking up 15 hours NEF that they need a code.

30 Hours funding renewal reminder

Please remind  families to renew their code to ensure that they can continue to access funding for their 3 and 4 year olds. Renewal must take place every three months and can be done via the HMRC website

Funding will not be able to continue without the relevant code, cut off dates for the funding are always as follows:

  • 31 March

  • 31 August

  • 31 December

All codes must be given to providers before the cut-off date to ensure continuation of funding.

ELT 2 Year Old Funding 

Families that qualify for a 2 year old free childcare place should be encouraged to apply.

Parents may need more information or assistance with the application process. Direct families to the Family Information Service for one to one support with the online application form. 

Apply for a 2 year old free childcare place

“Golden tickets” are sent out to all eligible parents who qualify for a two year old place, this is based on the data we receive from the DWP.

Parents do not need to apply online if they have received a "Golden Ticket"

DfE Guidance on assessing 2,3 and 4 year old funding for Afghan families under Government resettlement programmes.

Assessing eligibility and funding for afghan families

ARAP and ACRS families will have recourse to public funds and could be eligible for the free early education entitlements where they meet the published eligibility criteria.

Tax Free Childcare

Parents can use Tax Free Childcare to pay for any form of care or supervised activity for a child that is not part of the child’s compulsory education. The childcare must be registered or approved.

Step by Step Tax Free Childcare

Check Eligibility

Working in childcare in Sandwell


Starting a new nursery, preschool or other group childcare business in Sandwell?

Becoming a registered childminder and starting a childminding business?

Want to know more about working in childcare in Sandwell?


Contact the team at Sandwell Early Years for support with training and development, policies and procedures, recruitment and sustainability, 2,3 and 4 year old funding and Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).


Contact Sandwell Early Years


telephone: 0121 569 4960

EYFS Framework

From September 2021, all early years providers must follow the new early years foundation stage (EYFS) framework. 

The key aims of the reforms are to:

  • improve child outcomes at age 5, particularly in early language and literacy, especially for disadvantaged children; and
  • reduce workload, such as unnecessary paperwork, so that practitioners can spend more time interacting with the children in their care.

To support the implementation of the revised EYFS, the Department for Education has developed a new online service for private, voluntary and independent early years settings and childminders.  This service provides resources, advice and support to help practitioners to understand the requirements for each area of learning and development and what these requirements mean in practice. The new service is now live on and can be accessed here – Prepare for changes to the early years foundation stage framework 


Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework

The standards that school and childcare providers must meet for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5.

Changes to the early years foundation stage (EYFS) framework

The EYFS framework is changing from September 2021. You need to know what the changes are and how they affect you.

EYFS staff:child ratio

Lists of qualifications that meet DfE's criteria for counting in the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework staff:child ratios.

Development Matters

Non-statutory curriculum guidance for the early years foundation stage.

Oral Health in EYFS framework

Find out about promoting oral health as part of the early years foundation stage (EYFS)

Foundation Years Vodcast

This vodcast brings together the latest information on the revised early years foundation stage (EYFS) and the updated Development Matters for Private, Voluntary and Independent settings (PVIs) and childminders. It includes presentations from the Department for Education, Dr Julian Grenier and Ofsted as well as an interview with Vicky Dewar, Nursery Teacher at the Northumberland Church of England Academy Trust, who talks to us about her experiences of the early adopter year. 

Early Years Contacts

Early Years Team Contacts

Contact Details

Marketing your childcare business

Sandwell Family Information Service Hub is a free website to advertise your childcare business locally. Keep your information up-to-date and make the most of the FIS to promote your setting to families.

Register your childcare business


Marketing your Early Years Business is a key element of any business plan and directly contributes towards improving your long-term sustainability.

Marketing helps you better understand and anticipate your customer needs. It gives you expertise and the right tools to adapt quickly to a changing market and ensures your childcare business competes successfully.

Every provider wants to manage a childcare business where their childcare places are either full or occupancy high. In an increasingly competitive early years sector, actively marketing your service enables you to continually attract new enquiries from parents. It also retains the loyalty of those families already registered with you.


Business Smart Marketing

Marketing your business doesn’t have to cost a fortune and you don’t have to be a creative genius. Online technology has made it easier than ever to reach potential customers. PACEY has some ideas to help you advertise your services, as well as promote all the great things you do to existing parents


Promote your setting to parents

Nursery World 5 key tips to promote your setting to parents.

1) Know what local parents are looking for

2) Identify your unique selling points

3) Sell your setting to the outside world

4) Present your setting in the best light

5) Maintain a high profile



National Day Nursery Association (NDNA) advice on marketing your childcare business. Membership costs apply.



Social Media

Free social media courses

Social media basics

Getting on social media

Coronavirus Latest Guidance

The guidance collection brings together all the government guidance for early years and
childcare settings. Updates are added as they are published.

*Latest Covid Guidance*

Coronavirus related support for submitting an early years census 2022 return

Sandwell Early Years Covid Guidance December 2021

Managing coronavirus in education and childcare settings

Getting Tested 

Sandwell Covid-19 Testing

Latest Government Guidance on Coronavirus

Safe working in Childcare settings

Guidance on Out of School Settings

EYFS Guidance  during Covid-19

Protective Measures

Day to day running of settings

SEND Guidance

Learning at home

Funding for Early Years and Childcare Settings

Coronavirus Information for families

Health Security Agency for the latest Government guidance

Sandwell Counci Coronavirus advice and guidance

NHS latest advice 

Early Years Sector Covid 19 and Consumer Law advice aimed at Early Years settings

Local Business Grants during Covid 19 Sandwell Council Business Support during Covid-19

Local Restrictions in Early Years and Childcare how settings can prepare for restrictions and lifting of restrictions

Safeguarding and Remote Education during Covid-19 Understand how to follow safeguarding procedures when planning remote education strategies and teaching remotely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

covid stay alert


Ofsted inspections of early years providers

How Ofsted inspects childcare and early years, including the education inspection framework, deferring inspections, and safeguarding.

Early Years Inspection Handbook

Ofsted guidance on inspecting registered early years and childcare providers under the education inspection framework.

Ofsted EIF inspections and the EYFS

What schools and registered early years providers need to know about delivering the current and revised early years foundation stage (EYFS).

Framework for the regulation of provision on the childcare register

How Ofsted regulates applicants and childcare services that are only on the Childcare Register.

Useful Resources

Early Years Data and Statistics

Sandwell Town Data Summer 2021

The town data has been collated to support existing childcare providers who are considering potential expansion and/or potential new childcare businesses who are looking for a sustainable business location.

Sandwell Childcare Sufficiency Report 2021/22

The Childcare Sufficiency Report is a detailed analysis of the childcare sector in Sandwell

Early Childhood Development

How a child's brain develops through early experiences

Brain Matters documentary  Early Childhood Development

Early Childhood Education  The Research

Telling stories with young children

A series of short films made for the Economic and Social Research Council 2021 Festival of Social Sciences aimed at parents of young children, and early years practitioners, considers the importance of storytelling, anywhere and everywhere. In conversations with an actor, a parent and practitioners , they look at storytelling techniques, the role of stories in young children's cultural identity, and how storytelling can be used to support  young children's learning.

Early Years Sector Support

Early Years - detailed DfE information for Early Years sector

Early Years Alliance supporting Early Years providers

Children and Young People Now online magazine for Early Years professionals 

PACEY professional support for Early Years providers

Foundation Years for policies practice and resources

Coram Family and Childcare for professionals includes annual Childcare Surveys

Early Years Newsletter

Latest Early Years Newsletter

Winter 2022

Sandwell Keeps Talking

Sandwell Early Years has a NEW Toolkit for Early Years Practitioners. 

Sandwell Keeps Talking has a focus on Speech, Language and Communication as we know there are now many more gaps for our children within this area, and you are the best people to help them catch up.

Download Sandwell Keeps Talking Toolkit