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Childminders Club: Opinions on the constant recruitment of C/Mers - when there is a chronic shortage of children??

32 replies

KatieMac · 20/02/2005 21:10

What a long title....

I am NOT having a go at recently registered Childminders at all - so please don't take offence (I've only been at it less than 2 yrs)

But in my area C/Mers who have been minding for years (from 5 to 15) are all short of children. Mainly due to childrens centres/surestart nurserys/private nurserys (with Gov grants for building - not children).

However there are still adverts for childminder all over the place. And regular meeting are set up by our surestart people to induct new childminders??

Some new childminders in my network have not had any children (or maybe 1 P't) since they started over 7 months in 1 case.

Is there a problem with the Gov policies?

Any thoughts?

OP posts:

nikkim · 20/02/2005 21:27

"Is there a problem with the Gov policies?"

Yes, but don't get me started. I recently read an artcile in professional childcare raising the same query.

I am in the process of applying to be a childminder and it has crossed my mind how many children can there possibly be who need minding, especially as local primary schools are having to cut staff due to falling birth rates.

Having spoken to local childminders and from the adverts I have seen in local shops libraries etc there does seem to be a surplus, unless these childminders are not very good and therefore not getting any mindees - but then why have they been approved - why isn't someone helping them to improve.

But is childminding quite a fluid occupation, people filling in a few gap years and then moving on, so childminding reserves need building up. I have also noticed on our training courses quite a high drop out rate, so the active recruiting has to allow for this.

But as you say there are increasing numbers of neighbourhood/surestart nurseries which are an attractive option especially for those on a limited income or poeple leaving benefits and entering the workforce.


KatieMac · 20/02/2005 21:33

The local after school club (2 villages over) is doing a holiday club from 8am to 6pm for £10

I don't know how to compete with that

I have 2 F/t and 2 p/t vacancies and have had since November.

And 3 new ladies turned up at my local network meeting - they registered in Jan

I'm not sure where to go??What to do??
Advertising isn't working

OP posts:

RTKangaMummy · 20/02/2005 21:38


love the title btw must be one of the longest

Will prob make some people annoyed but so what that is their problem

I don't have the same problem as you so can't really comment



ssd · 21/02/2005 09:41

KM, have you thought about offering an evening babysitting service? This might drum up some income for you....


KatieMac · 21/02/2005 11:48

DH works evenings - so I'd need a babysitters too....Thanks for the thought tho'

OP posts:

stickynote · 21/02/2005 11:54

I'm a SAHM but one thing I'd be very interested in (and which AFAIK isn't offered in my area) is a small playgroup aimed at 18mths-2.5 year olds. A couple of hours one or two mornings a week would be fantastic - gives me a break and would get my little one used to being without me. My older two both did this (abroad) and it worked really well.

Just a thought.


KatieMac · 21/02/2005 20:06

Stickynote - my local Mum & toddler group is avail, or you can negociate a p/t rate with a childminder - but that would only be with the number of children that I had on that day.

I'm not up for running a toddler group on top of all I do....

OP posts:

BethAndHerBrood · 22/02/2005 21:24

I got registered in August '04, have had 1 baby 3 days a week for 8 weeks, until the parents were offered a place in the local nursery and that's it. Have advertised all over, don't know what else to do, there just aren't enough children to go round!! Had a phone call today about the first aid course you have to do, wondering wether to bother, and just resign in august. Give it up as a bad job!!


KatieMac · 22/02/2005 21:26

Oh Beth don't give up.

Where are you advertising....can we help you word your ads?

It's not much fun when you have no children to mind is it?

Please keep on a little longer....can we help??

OP posts:

BethAndHerBrood · 22/02/2005 21:36

My advert is on an A5 piece of paper, reads as follows:

Ofsted Registered Childminder Spaces now available for children aged 0 to 4 Full or part time care available Flexible Hours Outside play space Trips to park, shops etc Toddler groups Art and craft and messy stuff! Lots of toys and books

Competitive Rates

For more information call

BethAndHerBrood 01234 567890

I have to say that it's a lot more professional looking than some other's I have seen!!

What do you think???


BethAndHerBrood · 22/02/2005 21:37

That didn't come out like I typed it!!! But you get the idea!!!


KatieMac · 22/02/2005 21:41

Yep - I get the's very good - how are the fonts/colours? Do you have a picture/logo?
Where is it up?

My library have a folder with local info
My HV has just changed and he wants to meet all the local C/Mers
I'm struggling a bit at the mo - so I know what you are goingthro'
Hopefully someone else will join in to help encourage you

OP posts:

BethAndHerBrood · 22/02/2005 21:49

The writing is black, don't know what the font is but it's "friendly" looking, IYSWIM!!! There is a piccie of pooh bear on one corner and tigger on the other.

I've put them up in all the local shops, post office, etc.One up in the library, but the library is a bit dark and grim, not sure it's doing much good! I've put them through letterboxes on the estate i live on, What else is there??!!


KatieMac · 22/02/2005 21:52

Do you have a locla big employer.....a civil service dept or a hospital.

Careful using Disney characters....copyright?

What about Mum & Toddler groups, Baby clinic, etc

OP posts:

Mum2Luke · 28/05/2007 15:24

We have exactly the same problem in Audenshaw, Tameside,(Greater Manchester) too many childminders and not enough kids. I have been registered 5 yrs now, am a Network Childminder, have NVQ Level 3 Early Years (after OFSTED reccomended I do it) and lots of certificates for atending various courses relevant to my job such as EYFS training, Observation and planning and many more all in own time after a day of work.

I have to compete with a local Surestart, 4 day nurseries in my locality and before and after school clubs. I am seriously thinking of doing Level 4 or 5 to do perhaps work in the Children's Centre which is almost completed.

Does anyone else have the same problems, have tried advertising in the local paper, local newsagents and Childrens Info service, am trying to put my own website but finding that hard without computer knowledge but have not had phone call for months. Any ideas?


FeelingOld · 28/05/2007 15:37

Lots of childminders have registered round here in the last 2 years and I would say about 50% of them have packed it in without actually getting any mindees and about another 25% have 1 or 2 part-timers and are really struggling (or are working evenings in supermarket/doing bar work to make up their income), the others are just about managing to make a go of it but have vacancies. Luckily most of us 'more established' minders in the area are quite full. We asked our development worker why they keep doing the information sessions and training/registering more childminders when they keep packing up after a year cos they can't find work, she said they can't stop people registering. We asked why she is not being more up front and let these prospective childminders know about the lack of work, as least then they would know the truth.

Hope you find some new mindees soon Katy.


Ladymuck · 28/05/2007 15:43

But relative to other professions childminding has a low set up costs, and some people want to do it just for one of two children that they already know. I appreciate that it is frustrating if you don't feel that the local pool of work is sufficient, but these things do go with supply and demand.

Certainly it is fast approaching a time when there is a glut of childcare options available, and I do fear that it will be the concil sponsored unit that will survive as private nurseries and childminders give up. My concern is that with a universal plea for affordable childcare we'll end up in the two tier system where council nuseries are run on a bare minimum with barely qualified/motivated staff, and the wealthier family will opt for the trained nanny. The Government doesn't really seem to accept options whereby parents get the funding and choose what is best for them.


nannynick · 28/05/2007 15:48

I think Local Authorities have targets to meet each year, with regard to the number of childcare places they have within the authority area. I expect the LA are being pressured by central government to increase the number of places, thus why they promote Becoming A Childminder.

Alas not all the places created are sustainable.

I feel that some of the problem is a result of NCMA and Childminders in general not wanting their postcode made available. By withholding postcode data, it makes it hard for a new business (childminder) starting up to access how much local competitors there are. While the Ofsted will list providers within a specific mileage radius, it does not map those providers, nor is there any easy way to find out which childminders collect from which schools (useful for parents looking for after-school care).


OFSTEDoutstanding · 28/05/2007 16:15

I completely agree Kmac I am from same county as you and I am really struggling to fill my places got registered Aug 06 and didnt get any children until Feb )7 then they were like busses and signed 3 families in a week but having said that they are all part timers. Noone seems to want a full time cm and the playgroup in our village offers 51 weeks a year all day childcare for only £20 day 8-6 including all meals I agree how do we compete? A lady was telling me the other day she is thinking of getting registered felt like telling her not to bother as the kids just aren't out there for us now


hana · 28/05/2007 16:20

it's like a lot of things tho - when a childminder applies to become one, it generates income for some gov't group or another, just like any further educatioin training program. So someone gets the cash even if there is no job at the end of all of it
am somewhat surprised about all the fuss in the papers recently concernign junior doctors and that there are no jobs guarenteed for them at the end of their training, but nor is there for a lot of professions


ThePrisoner · 28/05/2007 16:21

This was a very old thread!!


Ladymuck · 28/05/2007 16:22

You don't train for 5 year at a cost of over £20k to become a childminder?


hana · 28/05/2007 16:24

forget about the amout of money tho, organisations are quite happy to take youir money


nannynick · 28/05/2007 18:20

TP - Yes it was started in Feb 2005. Yet the issue still seems to exist, else the thread would not have come back to life again.


noonar · 28/05/2007 18:27

can i do a quick-ish hijack? how much would it cost me to drop off 4 yo dd at 8.15, take her to school, then collect her at 12, and have her till 5, 2 days per week?

sorry to be cheeky!

ps, i'd choose you, if you were in my area, katie.

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