Childcare in Camrbridge?(3 Posts)
My new husband, 6 month old baby and I will be moving to Cambridge next year. This will be our first time living in England and first time being parents. We will both be working. What are the childcare options and costs for:
- nannies (part- and full-time)
- nanny shares (how do we find out about these)
- childminders (how are these different from nannies)
- other options
I’ve skimmed through some threads to see that the government pays for some childcare... what type is this and what are the requirements?
Any information or resources would be greatly appreciated.
A detailed answer would be huge. In brief......
See Pacey.org.uk for a run-down of the different types of childcare.
See childcare.co.uk or your local authority website's childcare database for an idea of what is available in your area, and to contact childcare providers.
The main differences between nannies and childminders are....
Childminders, in the true sense, have to be registered, inspected and regulated by Ofsted. Nannies do not, but some choose to be Ofsted-registered.
Childminders are self employed and, essentially, sell you a service under their chosen terms and conditions within the bounds of current laws and regulations. Ts&Cs may be negotiable to some degree. Nannies are usually directly employed by the family: you are their employer. This means you have more scope to lay down your own terms and requirements, but it also means you have more responsibilities as an employer: eg. employee's rights and benefits, minimum wage, payroll, pension, holidays, maternity benefits, etc.
Childminders work from their own homes. Nannies in your home.
Your 'other options' include....
Au pair. Usually a young person who lives with you and carries out some childcare and light housekeeping in return for board and a small cash allowance.
Private mutual arrangements with other parents/family/friends, with no cash payments or other reward. (These are notoriously unreliable.)
Babysitting. In a legal sense, this is really only babysitting if done in the evenings. Otherwise it falls into the next category, which is...
.... unregistered/unlawful/illegal childcare. This is anyone doing childcare for a bit of cash who should register with Ofsted but doesn’t. Roughly speaking, anything outside your home exceeding two hours for any type of payment or reward.
Costs vary widely, so any figures quoted by mumsnetters need to be taken with a pinch of salt. There are no set rates for any particular locality or type of care. Your only accurate way of doing this is contact specific childcare providers and ask them.
The best source for information on government help with childcare costs is childcarechoices.co.uk which has links to check entitlement and calculators. You may find your only entitlement is the Tax Free Childcare scheme until Lambkin turns three. Still, 20% off your bill in free money isn’t to be sniffed at.
Be aware, all government assistance is dependent upon you using an Ofsted-registered childcare provider.
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