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Childminder constantly off sick - FEEE hours

(17 Posts)
merylstreepcouldplaybatman Sun 03-Jul-16 13:51:14

My 4 year old son has being going to a childminder one day a week since September using some of his free funding hours (the remainder he does at a specialist nursery as he has special needs).

My problem is she has a long standing illness that means she's constantly taking days off sick. I think he's missed 7-8 days through her illness plus several other days she's booked off for holidays in term time. I think on one occasion he went on a different day to catch up (and a couple of other times she offered a catch up but then was off sick on those days).

It suddenly struck me this week that he's lost out on a huge number of funded hours and I wondered if there's any way they could be recouped? He's starting school after the holidays but only part time initially - would I be able to roll the hours over? Or could they be used in the holidays?

The problem I have is that due to his disability, he is very hard work so finding someone to look after him is difficult. Nurseries won't take him without 1-2-1 help and because he has the maximum number of hours offered at the specialist nursery, he can't get 1-2-1 funding for any other hours, so I felt lucky to find a childminder who'd have him. However I feel at the end of my tether with never knowing if he's going to be with her or not. I don't work on the day she has him but it's a bit of respite time for me. I'm not sure that I could secure anyone to look after him if it turns out I could use some of these lost hours but I'd like to try.

Appreciate any advice - thanks!

blowmybarnacles Sun 03-Jul-16 14:17:02

Could you contact your local authority and ask as they will be paying for the funded hours?

thesurreyyouth Sun 03-Jul-16 20:02:22

I believe the unused hours have to be repaid to the local authority unless he childminder is able to offer and deliver the hours owed between now & when he starts school in September. It doesn't have to be used term time only but when submitting a claim it is easier to work out the 15 hours using the school terms (minus 5 inset days) to ensure the maximum number of hours the grant covers is not exceeded.
it is possible, if a child changes settings part way through a claim period, for the unused session money to be transferred from the old provider to the new. It is never paid to the parent.

jannier Sun 03-Jul-16 21:21:31

She needs to offer you the funded hours owed and provide them Ask her when she intends to do this. If she cant talk to your LA.

merylstreepcouldplaybatman Sun 03-Jul-16 21:25:12

Thanks for the replies. I think I'll give the local authority a call tomorrow. I'm guessing even if they say he had X number of hours to be used between now and September that the childminder wouldn't be able to have him anyway (she gets really busy in the holidays and has said previously he's too much for her when she's full)

Would they know how many hours he's missed out on? I stupidly haven't written all the days down and so can't remember all of them!

NickNacks Sun 03-Jul-16 21:26:43

We are obliged to keep registers so your childminder will know.

jannier Sun 03-Jul-16 21:28:33

No probably not but your cm has to have kept a register by law ask her to go back and account for them, In my LA there is no deadline and they can be carried into the following term.

HSMMaCM Mon 04-Jul-16 06:54:56

The times your DC was off sick will count as funded, but any days lost due to cm closure should either be made up, or she won't be able to claim for them.

For example, I am on holiday for 2 weeks during the autumn term, so the funded hours start 1st September and run late into December, with no half term. Everyone still gets their full allocation of hours.

PirateFairy45 Mon 04-Jul-16 07:20:37

Don't use her.

She may be ill but it's unreliable for you and your son.

starry0ne Mon 04-Jul-16 07:32:23

I asked for one of my parents about funded hours for next year starts school part time ( although only for a couple of weeks..) finance answer was it depends what the school claims for anything over 15 hours and that is entitlement done.

As for missed hours I have to also fill out a form for any missed hours.

My other concern is a friend who is a childminder due to her history I was assessed by a psychiatrist before I started minding and did an update via Drs letter a year later which increased the number of children she could have.. She is now obliged to inform Ofsted any changes to her MH.

jannier Mon 04-Jul-16 09:15:18

starry0ne Mon 04-Jul-16 07:32:23

I asked for one of my parents about funded hours for next year starts school part time ( although only for a couple of weeks..) finance answer was it depends what the school claims for anything over 15 hours and that is entitlement done.

As for missed hours I have to also fill out a form for any missed hours.

My other concern is a friend who is a childminder due to her history I was assessed by a psychiatrist before I started minding and did an update via Drs letter a year later which increased the number of children she could have.. She is now obliged to inform Ofsted any changes to her MH

.........................................

In our borough if the child is starting reception but not attending school until headcount week we can claim for the weeks before headcount from 1st September, headcount is around 21st, so most schools have them in one day or part of at least by this date, but if they attend with me I claim for the 3 weeks to save parents

We have no form for missed hours.

All cm's have to inform of any change in circumstances including health mental or physical that may impact on care.

merylstreepcouldplaybatman Mon 04-Jul-16 16:34:10

Thanks for all the replies. I haven't managed to get through to the LA but I did mention to the CM's assistant this morning that I was going to contact them and could I have a copy of the dates. I asked her what she does when the CM's off and she said she still works with a smaller number of children. It made me feel a bit glum as clearly they're choosing my son to cancel on, which I do get in many respects as he is hard work but also makes me sad as its like he's being rejected.

Someone mentioned not using her which has crossed my mind as I never know if he's going to be going to her (it averages once a month she cancels on him) but I don't feel like I have much choice as it was hard enough to find her.

I will try again with the LA tomorrow and see if I get anywhere.

venys Mon 04-Jul-16 23:40:09

No real advice but I know how tough it is with a SN child myself. I haven't gone down the the CM route for childcare as I know it will be a real ball ache for all of us. My last couple of part time nannies are a bit sickly too and I hate it that we (meaning I) have to deal with their problems as well as our own. So sad that you and your son miss out when she is sick when you both are the ones that need the respite the most. Perhaps keep trying to find other cms or nannies that will take him. I do know there are some very good and reliable ones out there as I see them regularly at inclusive play sessions .

jannier Tue 05-Jul-16 18:53:55

I Would persevere with contacting your LA the fact she is discriminating against your child when cancelling is disgusting unless she has a genuine reason I would be making an appointment to discuss things with her directly not her assistant.

I am a child-minder with special needs training including Portage, autism, signing, feeding tubes and more I've had children with CP and other physically limiting conditions, in my borough we have a SEN coordinator who helps place children in childcare and an inclusion officer, maybe try contacting them unless you have your own portage worker (he is under 5 isn't he? )

SisterViktorine Tue 05-Jul-16 19:01:09

Could you get actual respite as opposed to using EY funding? (Sorry- I don't know how pre-school works in terms of respite).

merylstreepcouldplaybatman Tue 05-Jul-16 20:36:07

Thanks again for the replies. I had a chat with her and she offered to speak to her LA contact to see i could use stretched hours or roll them over to the new term but didn't offer him any extra dates to make up the missed hours. No joy myself still trying to get through to the LA, I guess it's a busy time of year!

Jannier - wish you were in my area (I'm East Midlands) I really struggled to find anyone who felt able to look after him.

merylstreepcouldplaybatman Tue 05-Jul-16 20:38:05

Sister Vic - we don't qualify for respite care unfortunately as apparently there's no money anymore so unless he's at risk of significant harm or we're about to give him up there's no help available sad

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