I have been wondering ….. These childminding agencies ……. What about co – minders and assistants?   Leave a comment

This is the fourth in  my mini series of blogs, each asking questions about one aspect of childminding agencies – if you have not read the previous ones – please do, as together these blogs pose a lot of questions – my personal questions but questions many others have also been wondering about.

So this blog will be short – in fact quite short – but nevertheless, these are important questions for me – and I suspect for others as well.

I work with a co minder – my eldest daughter Michelle, who is a Ofsted registered childminder in her own right. I also have two assistants listed with Ofsted – my husband and my youngest daughter, who assist either myself or Michelle as and when needed.

So far all well and good – Michelle and I both pay our fees to Ofsted, have our own insurance in place, and attend statutory training via the courses advertised (and often subsidised) by our Local Authority Early Years Team . Garry and Rosie also can access things like First Aid – again via out LA.

I also have ‘back up arrangement with a  registered childminder colleague, who the children know well, and who has provided cover on a number of occasions.

Of course there are many registered childminders who also have a co minder, or one or more assistants – or back up arrangements in place – and for whom everything is in place and works well.

With childminding agencies though, I do not know what will happen (due to lack of information)

So my questions – which I really hope someone will answer, are;

If  2 co minders both wanted to be part of a childminding agency – would they both have to pay a fee to the agency even though it is one setting?

What would happen if one  wanted to join an agency and one  didn’t? (and that might be the case if 2 co minders were both expected to pay a fee).

What would happen if one joined one agency and the other joined a different one (due to personal choice) and there was conflicting information and advice?

How could the agency only support / monitor / train one childminder and not the other, if only one of them joined the agency?

And what about using agency policies, and paperwork in the setting – could they both use these things , even if only one of them was an agency childminder – or would one have to have different documentation?

Then there are the assistants – they are not childminders in their own right but they do have training needs – childminders are happy to pay for their assistants training – BUT if the childminder is part of an agency, will their assistant be able to access the agencies training just for the cost of the actual training? Or will they have to be some sort of  ‘associate members’ of the agency – with or without any additional costs?

With ‘back up’ cover that is already in place – will agency childminders be able to still use their existing back up person? Would it be a different scenario if the back up childminder is not an agency childminder or belongs to a different agency?

I am sure there are other question that others may have – maybe people could put their additional questions in the comments section?

Posted January 28, 2014 by psw260259 in My thoughts on current childcare issues

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