Becoming a childminder shows you have love and passion for children. This career path can only be exciting and rewarding if you have a passion for the affairs of children and also have the skills and qualities needed in becoming a childminder.
Are you searching for how to become a childminder in UK? Then this article is for you.
Who is a Childminder?
A childminder is a care provider who takes care of other people’s children for more than two hours in his/her home when their parents are away.
A childminder most times would have helpers who help out in the home; people like relatives who live with the childminder or employed help.
A childminding home can pass as a nursery for children who are not up to school age, as well as an after-school club for older children who may come and at the home for some time after school.
Researching how to become a childminder in UK as an aspiring childminder means you are really passionate about children.
A career in childminding is a very important position. This can be productive and exciting for the childminder and the children if the childminder has a passion for children.
A true childminder not only makes sure that children are safe and well taken care of, but he/she is also interested in the children’s personal development and growth.
It is pertinent to know that before you venture into childminding and research on how to become a childminder in the UK, you should know exactly what you are about to go into.
You would have to look after other people’s kids when they are not around. These children will have to be safe, comfortable, and fed well under your care.
You’ll have to engage them in playing, discussions, reading, and all-around learning.
Being a childminder in the UK entails:
- Looking after other people’s children from 0-8 years old or slightly above.
- Taking care of the children’s feeding according to their dietary needs or religious beliefs.
- Pacifying crying children, changing nappies, bath, and cleaning up the children when they mess up.
- Providing different indoor and outdoor play activities, to aid the development of the children.
- Making sure these children are safe and comfortable under the care of their minder.
- Engaging parents on the activities, behaviors, and characters of their children in the child-minding home.
There are certain working conditions that an aspiring childminder needs to put into consideration. These conditions are:
- The working hours won’t be entirely determined by the childminder, because the time would have to work with the parent’s schedule.
- The home that would be used by the childminder for this business will be inspected to ensure that this environment is conducive for childminding services.
- A childminder sometimes may have to drive children to either school, outings, or playgroups with the approval of the parents after the parents have made sure the childminder has a driver’s license.
As you seek to know how to become a childminder in the UK, you must make sure you possess certain skills and qualities. These skills and qualities are as follows:
- Listening skills
- Good communication skills
- Love for children
- Ability to pacify crying children
- Attention to detail
- Positive attitude to work
- Sense of humor
Qualifications to Become a Childminder in the UK
There actually are no formal qualifications needed to become a childminder which is a self-employed kind of career.
But there are necessary childcare qualifications like the National Certificate in Child Care that may be valuable.
To become a childminder in the UK, you must:
- Be 18 or above 18 years of age
- Be registered with the Care Inspectorate if you’ll be taking care of other people’s children for more than two hours in your home.
- Have a PVG ( Protection of Vulnerable Groups) Scheme record.
How to Become a Childminder in UK.
- Acquire the Necessary Information
- Go Through and Pass Criminal Record and Health Checks
- Provide Referees
- Ofsted Registration
- Ofsted Home Inspection
- Receive Your Registration Certificate
- Get Insurance
- Register With HMRC As a Self-employed
- Start Advertising Your Business
Step 1. Acquire the Necessary Information
To know how to become a childminder in UK, you’ll have to get all the information needed, just as you here now.
This will help you not to skip any step to becoming a childminder and help be on the right track on your journey to becoming a childminder in the UK.
Step 2. Go Through and Pass Criminal Record and Health Checks
The next step to take is to undergo a criminal record check. This check is for the childminder and everyone above sixteen working with him/her.
Every one of them must get a Disclosure and Barring Services record check before the childminder registers. These checks cost £40 per person.
And if you have lived overseas, you’ll have to present a certificate of good character, gotten for the relevant embassy.
This certificate also applies to other members of the household who would also apply for the Disclosure and Barring Services checks.
The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) will accept a DBS certificate only within 3 months after the certificate has been issued to the childminder.
Ofsted recommends that each applicant equally applies for the DBS update service because of this. This update service costs £13.00 per year.
You can apply for this when applying or up to 30 days after you have gotten your certificate.
Download, go through, and complete a Healthcare Declaration Form:
You’ll have to complete a Health Declaration form if you are applying to the Early Years, Register.
You’ll have to fill and complete parts A and part B1 of the form, print it and take it to your GP to get approved and completed. You’re likely to get charged for this service.
If you by any chance have a medical condition at the point of registration, you can have an appointment with your GP to talk about the possible implications of becoming a childminder.
Step 3. Get the Necessary Training
The age range of the children you’ll be taking care of would determine the training you’ll need. These training are:
This training is for taking care of children of ages 0-12. You’ll have to go through and complete introductory training courses if you’ll be caring for kids aged 0-12.
In choosing a course, you need to make sure you pick a course that contains everything you’ll need for registration as a childminder and contain how to put into practice the EYFS ( Early Years Foundation Stage) statutory framework.
Common Core Training:
You’ll have to complete this training if you’ll be taking care of children who are 5 and over.
If you’ll be taking care of children aged 5 and over, you’ll be needing at least a Level 2 qualification or training in the Common Core before you register to become a childminder.
When you complete this qualification, you’ll be eligible to register with Ofsted without the early year’s register, only on the childcare register.
First Aid Training:
This training is legally needed every 3 years. You’ll have to undergo a complete 12-hour Paediatric First Aid course before registration.
There are several providers for this training. Whichever provider you choose, it must be a full course and in line with the Early Years Foundation Stage requirements or one which has a membership with a trade body with an approved monitoring scheme. This training is required to be renewed every 3 years.
You can choose to take the full 12 hours course or the blended course which is 6 hours online and 6 hours of classroom learning.
Step 4. Provide Referees
When applying to become a childminder, you’ll be needed to provide the details of two persons who can be referees for you.
Companies request for referees to be well informed about your personality, work ethic and every other important detail about you.
From referees, companies confirm if you have been truthful in your application.
Step 5. Ofsted Registration
The next step is to apply to an Ofsted register. This registration would cost £35 annually. The register or registers you choose to apply to will be determined by the ages of the children you would be taking care of.
With this in mind, most childminders still register on both the Early Years Register and the Childcare Register.
The Early Years Register:
This is for children aged 0-5. This is necessary for childminders who plan on looking after kids of this age range till the children reach the end of the reception year in school.
You can as well join the Childcare Register and this doesn’t attract any extra cost.
The Childcare Register:
This is for childminders who plan to take care of children aged 5 and over. This register has two parts.
One is the Compulsory part which is for childminders who take care of children aged between 5 and 8 years. The second part is the Voluntary part which is for childminders looking after children over 8 years alone.
Join Both Registers
This is if you decide to look after children of both age ranges (0-8 years and above). If you join the Early Years Register and later decide to join the Childcare Register, you can do this without an extra cost.
But if you join the Childcare Register alone, if you decide to join the Early Years Register, you’ll have to apply separately and this would attract a fee.
Step 6. Ofsted Home Inspection
If you’ll be applying to the Early Years Register, the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) will contact you to fix an inspection of your child-minding home.
During this inspection, Ofsted will confirm your identity, your qualifications, and your English language ability and check if your childminding home is conducive for childcare.
You’ll also be asked about your EYFS requirements and how you plan to aid the learning and development of the kids you’ll be taking care of.
You’ll only be paid one Ofsted inspection visit, so you’ll have to be completely prepared for this visit.
There is a comprehensive guide made available by Ofsted to help you prepare for this inspection visit. You’ll have to read it thoroughly before the inspection day.
It is important to note that this visit only applies if you go for the Early Years, Register. You won’t have to bother about an Ofsted inspection if you apply for the Childcare Register.
Step 7. Receive Your Registration Certificate
The next step after the completion of the process and a successful inspection conducted by the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills, and your application has been approved, you’ll receive a certificate of registration from Ofsted. You can only start a childminding business when you’ve received this registration certificate.
You’ll equally receive a Unique Reference Number. This number will be published online with your reports of the conducted inspection. Ofsted will also publish your name and address online, though you can request for them not to be uploaded.
Step 8. Get Insurance
After you’ve been registered, it is important you get public liability insurance as soon as possible. There are a number of insurance agencies to choose from, like Morton Michel, Childcare.co.uk, PACEY, and SCMA.
There are factors that would determine how long the processes mentioned above would take. These factors include the childminder training course you choose and the Ofsted registration process which is said to take up to twelve weeks to complete.
Step 9. Register With HMRC As a Self-employed
The next step is to register as self-employed with HMRC. This is how you can pay tax as a self-employed individual from the money you make as a childminder.
Step 10. Start Advertising Your Business
You can now start to advertise your childminding services from your local area and this will help you to be well known.
If you’ve been known as a good person in your area, this will increase parents’ faith in you and release their children to you for care.
You can make and distribute fliers, put up adverts on websites, advertise on the Childcare.co.uk network, and use social media to your advantage.
You can equally have your services listed on Google My Business.
What Do Childminders Do All Day?
Childminders take care of the children all day. They change nappies, cook meals, clean and make the children feel comfortable.
They engage the children in fun activities and help in the positive development of the children under their care.
How Long Does it Take to Become a Childminder in the UK?
According to Ofsted, it would take up to 12 weeks to complete the Ofsted registration. Your application should take 30 minutes to complete.
Can a Childminder Work From a Rented House?
If the home where a childminder would be operating from is rented, the childminder must have written permission from his/her landlord before commencing childminding in the home.
There are rental homes that have exceptions to what kind of business would be allowed to be run on their properties.
Do Childminders Pay Tax?
Yes. Using standard income tax rates, childminders would have to pay tax to HMRC based on taxable earnings. And a childminder will need to fill out a self-assessment tax return.
How Many Children can you Look After as a Childminder?
A childminder is only allowed 6 children at once. The ratio for a childminder shouldn’t exceed 6 children. It always should be six children to one childminder.
How Long is Childminder Inspection?
It takes approximately 3 hours to complete the Ofsted inspection.
Childminder Salary in the UK
In the United Kingdom, the national average salary for a Childminder is £34,000.
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