A document to share – Why I think childminding agencies are not a good idea   Leave a comment

This document can be copied and pasted, changed, added to, bits taken away, made more personal, used as a started point – but please use and share – as there are a lot of people who do not understanding the implications of childminding agencies



Why I think Childminding Agencies are NOT a good idea


My name is (insert your name) and I am a Ofsted Registered Childminder.

I am writing to you as I want to raise awareness of the Governments intentions to introduce childminding agencies as from 2014, in fact they are piloting these agencies from August 2013 – March 2014.

  • The Government propose that;

Childminders who join agencies will not have to register with or be inspected by Ofsted

This will create a two tier system and make it difficult for parents to make decisions about who should look after their child as in future not every childcare setting will have an individual inspection or inspection report

It will also mean that childminders may be graded higher or lower than their actual practice, as every agency childminder will have the same agency based grade.

  • The Government plans that each agency will set it’s own business model

Childminders in an agency will have vastly different practice, quality of resources, training level and things that are included or not included within the standard fee. Therefore even if an agency sets a ‘standard fee’ what you get for that fee will very enormously

Childminders in an agency may have to adopt the agencies policies and procedures that are generic rather than specific to each childminder.

Agencies will have to be self funding so childminders will have to pay a fee to the agency – and each agency will decide what that fee is and what services you get for that fee. It is possible that childminders may pay a % of income or a set annual fee or a fee for each service as used.

Some agencies may ‘match’ parents and childminders – taking away parental and childminder choice.

  • The Government are suggesting that Childminding Networks could be developed into childminding agencies

Please don’t be taken in by this a childminding network is not the same as a childminding agency – and by ‘develop’ it is likely they mean that once childminding agencies are law in late 2014 that there will be a lot of changes made – including charging to stay in the network/ agency, introduction of new agreements and terms and conditions, and even the possibility that if the LA will no longer be able to provide the network coordinators, they may ‘sell’ or pass on the network as a whole to a private company or a commissioned service.

And don’t forget that at the same time childminders will lose the right to an Ofsted inspection and maybe the reason for joining a network in the first place – that of improving practice and Ofsted grade.

  • The Government are also reducing the role of the Local Authorities – and their funding

This means that childminders who choose not to join an agency will find it more difficult to access support and training.

The Governments proposals are going to change childminding and the individual tailored childcare service that childminders provide – and will in my opinion have a detrimental impact on parents choice, individual care for children and on childminders small businesses.

Therefore, I urge you to take the time to find out more about the Governments proposals in More Great Childcare from the following sources

www.togetherforquality.com     www.pennysplacechildminding.com

http://ukcma.me.uk/   http://www.pacey.org.uk/    https://www.pre-school.org.uk/

And finally, can I ask that you consider signing the petition calling on the Government to stop the implementation of More Great Childcare


Thank you for taking the time to read this


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