Becoming a childminder
Registering as a childminder
To be a childminder you need to be at least 18 years old.
You will need to register with Ofsted or a Childminder Agency before you can look after children under the age of eight years of age for more than two hours a day.
Registration can take up to 12 weeks.
It is an offence to provide such childcare without being registered or on premises that have not been approved.
There are two registers:
- The Early Years Register - for providers caring for children from birth to 31 August following their fifth birthday. Providers on this register must meet the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).
- The Childcare Register has two parts:
- part A: compulsory - for providers caring for children from 1 September after the child's fifth birthday up until their eighth birthday.
- part B: Voluntary - for providers caring for children aged eight and over.
Who can register
To be a childminder you need to:
- have the right to work in the UK.
- be at least 18.
Who cannot register
You cannot register if:
- you’re barred from working with children
- you’ve been refused registration in the past or had your registration cancelled (other than for not paying your annual fee)
- you live in the same place as someone else who is disqualified.
What you need to do to register
You must apply to register at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-to-register-as-a-childminder
The application contains guidance notes throughout to help you complete the required sections. There is more information about registering as a childminder on the gov.uk website.
You will also need to:
- Complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check online and join the update service.
- Ofsted will not accept any application without a DBS certificate number or confirmation that you have subscribed to the update service.
Training and courses
- You must have completed training which helps you understand and implement the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS 3.24).
- Childminders and home childcarers must have successfully completed a qualification at a minimum of level 2 in an area of work relevant to childcare, or training in the common core skills (early years and childcare registration handbook, CR4.2).
You can attend training provided by any training organisation; it is your responsibility to check that courses you choose meet the requirements of the EYFS. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire about pre-registration training provided by the local authority.
- Complete a nationally approved and accredited paediatric first aid course.
- Attend a child protection training course. The EYFS (3.5) states that childminders must take lead responsibility for protecting children.
The lead practitioner must attend a child protection course, taking account of any advice from the local children safeguarding board or local authority. We recommend childminders, as child protection leads, attend the class based child protection training course provided by the local authority.
If you cannot secure a place prior to your Ofsted registration application, you should complete the free online training provided by the Bromley Safeguarding Children Board and book the next available place on the class based course. Please email email@example.com
You will need confirmation of your place ready to show your Ofsted inspector.
After you are registered
- You will be contacted by one of our quality improvement officers who will offer you advice and support until your first Ofsted grading inspection.
- You will be invited to workshops specifically designed to meet aspects of the Early Years Foundation Stage.
- You will be invited to attend a Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent (WRAP).
- You will be invited to information sessions to up-date you on local and national issues and to network with other childminders.
- You will have access to all local authority documents to support curriculum planning and the development of your setting.