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CM club - will you be chafing ratios & dropping prices?

(20 Posts)
lechatnoir Tue 29-Jan-13 23:50:01

In light of today's headline about relaxing the guideline on ratios in an attempt to drive down the cost of Childcare, I'm curious to know how many CM's can see themselves offering the extra space and if so, would you reduce your fees? I'm fairly new to CMing & the thought of 1:4 under 3's brings me out in cold sweats (I find 3 under 3 hard enough smile) but wonder you more experienced CM's would feel comfortable/capable of working at the new levels even if you have no intention of actually doing it?
Any thoughts most welcome....

lechatnoir Tue 29-Jan-13 23:50:48

Obviously changing not chafing ratios smileshock

No, my usp is I work under ratio so this will work in my favour

I have worked fulltime, 8-6, 5 days a week, to full capacity and it didn't work. I was not tiptop for the minded children, nor my own family. This was years ago, when I was keen to forge ahead,in my then newly formed business. I rather Bit orf more than could chew iyswim

ZuleikaD Wed 30-Jan-13 06:01:13

I won't - I too use the fact that I work under ratio as a selling point.

HSMM Wed 30-Jan-13 08:21:36

I have no plans to make any changes.

MaryPoppinsBag Wed 30-Jan-13 09:44:02

No I have no plan to do this.

Has the total number of children that we can have gone up? Or is it still 6 under 8's? <confused>

Flisspaps Wed 30-Jan-13 09:49:03

Still 6 under 8.

These are still 'proposals' as I understand it, but the changes for CMs are already largely in place already, within the new EYFS, but as exceptions rather than the rule.

minderjinx Wed 30-Jan-13 09:49:45

I have no plans to change anything - apart from anything else there are no plans to change overall numbers so taking on a little one would mean getting rid of an after-school child.

That said, there is some hysteria about the proposed changes. Just because you could have more children doesn't mean that you must, or even that many will. At least being self-employed we childminders have the discretion to take on as many or as few children as we feel sensible. I do wonder if some nursery staff are going to be railroaded into roles which leave them overstretched and with less job satisfaction.

Nope, i keep getting asked to go full time again but it just doesn't work for my family (my primary motivator for this job being it is flexible to work around my family). I may consider an extra one day per week but that would be the max I would do.

I also think that many parents choose childminders because of the lower numbers of children in the setting, some littlies I know find nurseries very overwhelming

mamamaisie Wed 30-Jan-13 12:53:40

No, I won't be taking on any more children or lowering my prices. I gave up a much higher paid job to become a childminder so that I could have a better work/family balance. I do not want to regularly look after four children under 5. I might do it on occasion if a parent desperately needs a one off extra day, but this would be as a special favour only.

dobby2001 Wed 30-Jan-13 15:35:27

Having read the details specific to CMs I am confused, as we are already working to these levels - in so far as if you can assess and demonstarte to OFSTED you are safe to work at those levels you can provide them (meeting eyfs gubbings too of course!) They changed that last year when they did away with Variation requests?

I already have 4 under 5s most days dues to having several sibling groups. The ages make a big differance, plus the older ones are often at preschool for half the day. I think I would find it alot more stressful if they were all under say 2 or 3 shock

minderjinx Wed 30-Jan-13 16:22:23

I have to agree that there is a world of difference between looking after four four year olds and a group of babies and toddlers..

ZuleikaD Wed 30-Jan-13 16:28:40

Yes, I'll have four under-5s when I go back to minding in September (am about to go on mat leave) - DD, who'll be 4.5, will be starting fulltime school, so I'll have three of my own and one mindee, but I would have been allowed that anyway.

HSMM Wed 30-Jan-13 16:35:52

I have had 4 under 5 with variations fairly regularly, but I wouldn't want to be committed to it all the time. I will continue as before, with the extra numbers meaning I can offer flexibility to parents.

thebody Wed 30-Jan-13 17:20:27

I was like boys, had 4 under 5 full time 8 till 6 and school runs.

I basically worked myself into the ground pleasing mindees and family alike.

Bad back and knackered all the time but the pride of running your own successful business,and to be honest the money, was fantastic.

I gave up due to permanent knackeredness.

However for me,ratios apart,if I could cm in a purpose built area such as a converted garden house with toilet and kitchen facilities I would return to it like a shot.

For me it's not so much amount of children, a good cm can cope with that, it's the blurring of 'home' and 'work'
Sorry off topic.

Megsdaughter Wed 30-Jan-13 18:45:32

I gave up a couple of years ago now, but had 4 under 5, two sets of siblings, it was bloody hard work.

And who in their right mind would want to work harder for less money!

Yes with 4 you will earn more than three, but at a lower cost per child, no lower cost on, food, equipment, ( more beakers, cots, prams to a bigger car) tho, so you would probably come out worse off.

Megsdaughter Wed 30-Jan-13 18:48:15

I gave up a couple of years ago now, but had 4 under 5, two sets of siblings, it was bloody hard work.

And who in their right mind would want to work harder for less money!

Yes with 4 you will earn more than three, but at a lower cost per child, no lower cost on, food, equipment, ( more beakers, cots, prams to a bigger car) tho, so you would probably come out worse off.

stomp Wed 30-Jan-13 19:09:13

no, I only have under 5 yr olds anyway and its my USP to provide a place for children not suited to nursery (those babies/toddlers who struggle in big group care). So I will keep to a maximum of 1:3, which is often 1:2 smile. My prices are competitive, but I will not be lowering them even if other providers around me do ....I may go out of work hmm but I will not compromise on my ethos.

calmlychaotic Wed 30-Jan-13 19:48:35

i wont change anything really however its good to have the flexibility to go over current ratios, i know ofsted have more or less allowed us to do that anyway. for me it just means if one of my existing customers needs an extra day which would previously have taken us over ration and i would have declined i would now be more likley to take it, providing i can still practically manage, ie enough buggy spaces. I cant imagine the changes will affect childminders all that much, well good childminders anyway...can i say that! what concerns me is nurseries cramming children in, there are some great nurseries out there i know that but some will take fulll advantage, poorly paid and overworked staff with way too many kids.

doughnut44 Wed 30-Jan-13 21:57:14

No I certainly won't be doing - I was actually thinking about lowering my ratio and increasing my fee. I honestly think this is a way of getting rid of childminders as a lot of first time parents who are struggling for money may think about price first. I was always told how much better a nursery would be for my childs development - how wrong I was. If I would have looked into it more my choice would have been a childminder!

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