On this page you will find out how you can become a childminder in Waltham Forest
In England, childminders register with Ofsted, the regulatory body. They follow the same legal framework, the Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework, as any other childcare provider (such as pre-schools and nurseries), so should offer the same quality experience.
A childminder can care for a maximum of six children under eight years old, of which usually no more than three may be under the age of five, and no more than one of these may be under one (although some expectations to these ratios are allowed). These numbers will include the childminder's own children. Childminders can also care for additional children over eight but they will have to demonstrate to Ofsted that they can meet the varying needs of all children being cared for.
The available space will also impact on the number of children you can care for. EYFS states childminders 'must meet the following indoor space requirements. Children under two years: 3.5m2 per child; Two year olds: 2.5 m2 per child; Children aged three to five years: 2.3 m2 per child'
However, childminding is a dynamic and evolving career. Many minders in Waltham Forest are expanding their business and employing assistants or working alongside other registered minders, so they can care for more children at once. If you employ assistants, you must meet all the legal requirements regarding being an employer.
Childminding offers fantastic career opportunities - from making a difference to a child's life, to being your own boss and working from home. If you have your own children, you will be able to care for them alongside minded children.
As you will be self-employed, you are able to set your own charges, there is no national rate. Childminder fees vary, depending on the service offered. As a childminder you can also register to offer the Free Early Education Entitlement to families.
You can choose your own hours, however the more flexible you are the more likely you are to get work. If you are still interested, have a think about the following: Do you want to work from home? Are you willing to be flexible with the hours you work? Could you provide a range of planned stimulating activities? Are you energetic, caring and resourceful? What effect will it have on your family? Would you be able to talk to parents about any concerns you may have about their children?
Paediatric First Aid
Childminders, and any assistant who might be in sole charge of the children for any period of time, must hold a current paediatric first aid certificate. Providers can choose which organisation they wish to provide the training (preferably one with a nationally approved and accredited first aid qualification or one that is a member of a trade body with an approval and monitoring scheme, for example, the Federation of First Aid Training Organisations (FOFATO) or The First Aid Industry Body (FAIB)).
St John Ambulance or the British Red Cross can be good places to look for a course or the the local authority also arranges Paediatric First Aid courses that meet all of Ofsted requirements; details of these courses can be found on the Waltham Forest Adult Learning Service website.
Whichever course you choose, it must last 12 hours and cover all the criteria as listed in Annex A of the Statutory framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage.
Understanding the EYFS
Ofsted says "There is no requirement for childminders to have a level 3 qualification or any particular type of training - the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) just requires you to have undertaken a training course that helps you to understand the EYFS. The Ofsted inspector will check your understanding at your registration visit".
You can undertake this training either face to face or online. If you don't have a background in childcare we would recommend a face-to-face course.
Waltham Forest Adult Learning Service run regular face-to-face evening courses. PACEY (the professional associaton for childcare and Early Years) run an online Level 3 Award in Home Based Childcare (HBCA). Many childminders go on to complete other professional training, however, we highly recommend you pursue a qualification so that you are more prepared for your new career in childminding.
Before you can work as a childminder you have to register with Ofsted.
You can also download Ofsted's quick guide on how to register as a childminder.
Cost and Funding
The below is only an estimation of cost, and does not include the purchase of resources and toys:
If you are a newly registered minder, you may be eligible for the childcare business grant.
A DBS check will need to be made for yourself and every member of your household aged 16 and over. If anyone in your household already holds a DBS check, it must be enhanced one and they must be signed up to the update service, otherwise Ofsted will reject it.
Once you have your applciation form reference number, you can register online for the DBS update service. Every DBS check must be signed up to this.
Whilst registering with Ofsted
Once you have started the process of registering with Ofsted we can offer you a three visit package to support you on the road to registering. The three visits cover:
The cost of this support is £120 including VAT.
Once you have become a childminder in Waltham Forest
Once Ofsted has registered you as an Early Years Childminder, Waltham Forest Council will receive an automatic notification from Ofsted and you will be contacted by the Early Years, Childcare and Business Development Team who will invite you to join our wonderful childminding community and our FREE core offer of support which includes:
You also have the option of joining a partnership within Early Years System Leadership, which will enable you to access additional training and professional development.
1. Planning Law & Requirements
Planning permission will not normally be required to home work or run a business from home, provided that a dwelling house remains a private residence first and business second (or in planning terms, provided that a business does not result in a material change of use or a property so that it is no longer a single swelling house)
If you wish to set up a childcare facility from a domestic property, you may require a change of use planning approval for D1 use. You will be required to contact the Waltham Forest planning department and may have to make an application for a "certificate of lawfulness" which will inform you if you will need to apply for a change of use to D1 or not.
Please be aware that you must seek permission from your landlord if you rent your property.
2. Premises Health & Safety
In order to ensure your home is safe for childminding, we have prepared a guidance to assist you with maintaining safe premises to deliver childcare from.
3. Health Check
You will then need to complete a health check form and give to your doctor. GPs do charge for this service. Once completed it will need to be posted back to Ofsted as soon as you submit your application. No-one else in your household needs to do this.
4. Recruitment of and working with assistants in childminding settings
Guidance has been produced here to assist you in your role if you are planning to work with/ employ Assistants to help you care for children in your childminding setting. s the registered child-minder you are the main carer for the children and are responsible for and must monitor the work of any assistant. You can employ more than one assistant as long as there are no more than three people caring for the children in one day. You can employ up to a maximum of 2 assistants whilst working from your own home, as long as there are no more than three people caring for the children in one day.