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how do i set up as a childminder?

(6 Posts)
dinkyboysmum Tue 26-Aug-08 11:01:11

i'm working as a full time teacher, and have a ds who is 16 months & currently with a CM full time term time only. would love to spend more time at home with him and perhaps think CM woudl fit well in the future when/if i have dc2. i already have first aid/food hygeine/child protection training in place.

any info or advice would be welcome...what are the set up costs involved? ofsted registration? how long does it take for all the checks etc. how long can i expect it to take before i start getting some mindees? thinking 3.50/hr seesm to be the going rate around here.

nannynick Tue 26-Aug-08 18:47:17

Why do you want to leave teaching? As a teacher you can earn a lot more than a childminder, especially once you make your way up to deputy head. As a teacher you get long holiday periods, so you are already spending a lot longer time with your DS than other working parents. As a teacher you get maternity leave and maternity pay, and you may get opportunity to go back to work at reduced hours/days. While you are a teacher you will be keeping your knowledge updated. Once you leave teaching... you may never get back in again. CM's are self-employed. Some years they may make quite a bit of money, while other years they may make very little. It's quite an insecure job, especially at the moment. Think long term - do you really want to leave teaching?

Set-up Costs: Depends on what you already have in place at your home. I would expect you could start up for under £500, excluding advertising costs.

Ofsted Registration: Supposed to take around 12 weeks. I'd suggest allowing 4 months.

How long for first mindee: alas, that is a how long is a piece of string question. You may be lucky and fill your spaces quickly, but you may not.

£3.50 per hour sounds low to me, but you are right in saying that it varies by area. Where I am childminders charge £4.50-£5 per hour average for a full-time under 5 child.

I would suggest reading as many threads on this board as possible, so that you get a better idea of what you will be getting yourself into. There are many threads on here with regard to things such as how much to charge for various things, about EYFS, Ofsted in general, suggestions for places to advertise, details about insurance providers, what paperwork needs to be done, how to terminate an agreement with a parent, how to try to get money owed by a parent, all sorts of things.

I would say that given the current economic climate, if you are working now to pay your bills, don't leave your job. Continue being a teacher - it is a more secure job than childminding.

dinkyboysmum Wed 27-Aug-08 11:34:29

ohhh, thank you SO SO much for that nannynick
i guess that, as the end of my 'long' summer holiday approaches, i'm just dreading leaving ds1 again. i know teaching is better paid, but i dont get to see him in term time & it breaks my heart sad
reaaly appreciate the advice though, especially about the current economic climate. thank you

jojo76 Thu 28-Aug-08 16:03:43

Hi dinky, I would agree that cm'ing is a good job if you want to earn while still spending time with your own kids. That is the definite benefit for me ( I have two at home at the moment, one about to start nursery part time soon). Also, in some respects its nice for your kids to have visitors to play with (although this can backfire if they don't get on!!), although sometimes I think its hard for them to have to share thier home all the time. I work part time now, which suits us better, I was finding that cm'ing full time actually somehow interfered with my being able to spend time with the kids in the way I wanted - there is more rushing around, fitting in activities, writing diaries, getting food on the table to more of a timetable and also drop offs and pick ups from nusrery!
Also be aware that while you have your own little ones at home, they count in your numbers, so if like me you have two underfives at home of your own, you can only take on one other under five, so for the majority of the day, you will only be earning £3.80 or whatever you charge. That can be galling, but it's my choice, I have to remind myself!
the other thing is to be aware that you will now have to register as a food premisis, and do a food hygeine course, and there are plenty of other courses that you are required to do as well. They are often run in the evenings or at weekends, so as not to interfere with your earnings during the week (at least they are here). In the last year i have been on several courses till ten at night, all day saturday (recently i did a twelve hour first aid course 8-8pm, all day saturday!!), and these you sometimes have to pay for.
That said, I do think childminding is a good job if you want to be a sahm and also work, once the kids go to school, the money can be quite good, but as nannychick said, its sporadic sometimes, and it can be very trying sometimes chasing up late payments.

Best of luck though!!!!!!! Hope whatever you decide works out well! grin

jojo76 Thu 28-Aug-08 16:04:26

sorry, hope it wasnt overly familiar calling you just Dinky!!!!! LOL

AbbaFan Thu 28-Aug-08 16:19:00

How much does the finance side come into your decision. If you really need to earn money, them I wouldn't recommend childminding with 2 under 5's of your own.

I am a CM with 2 children but I only ever 1 of them in my under 5 range at one time. Now they are both off to school, so I finally have 3 under 5 spaces and can hopefully start earning some decent money.

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