Government publishes childminder agency advice

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The Department for Education has published a step-by-step guide to childminder agencies.

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The new step-by-step guide provides information for those interested in setting up a childminder agency and parents

The guide is aimed at those interested in setting up an agency, individuals that may find themselves working with agencies, and parents.

From today, childminder agencies can register with Ofsted.

The 47-page document includes information on how to set-up as an agency, the support available, how agencies will be funded, how children will be kept safe from harm and inspected by Ofsted.

The childcare and education minister Sam Gyimah said, ‘I want parents to have better access to affordable, high quality childcare that best suits their family's needs, with innovative solutions to achieve this.

‘We know that many parents like the personal and flexible home-based care childminders offer. Childminder agencies will make their life easier by providing a one-stop shop to make it easier for parents to find the right childminder for their child. They will also support childminders who want to promote their services and develop professionally.

‘The first agencies can now register with Ofsted and I’m looking forward to seeing the proposals put forward.’

St Bede’s Childcare, covering the areas of Wigan and Bolton, is one of the first childminder agencies to register with Ofsted so far. The provider is one of 20 that took part in the childminder agency pilot.

 The new guide comes after Ofsted published its Childminder Handbook last week.