Nursery World Awards 2020 - Childminding Business of the Year

Friday, February 5, 2021

Kayla’s House, Brampton

A registered childminder since 2013 and twice Ofsted-graded Outstanding, Kayla Ellis works with a partner childminder from her converted garage.

In 2018, Kayla was approached by her local authority to become a Literacy Scheme Champion for a community project. She attended all the speech and language training needed, often held after a long day looking after children or on a Saturday after a 50-hour working week, and now works in partnership with another childminder from Wisbech on the Literacy Champion Scheme, offering support to childminders and their parents in improving children’s speech and language development, and regularly reporting back on their progress to the local authority.

As part of her role as a Literary Scheme Champion, Kayla applied for funding to purchase story packs with books, puppets and other resources to be shared with childminders and parents. Each pack has full instructions and an evaluation book for parents and childminders to use with their children.

She has also set up a group for local childminders to meet and support one another. She plans activities for the weekly meetings and controls the budget, after securing funding for a venue to host the group for up to a year. The group allows childminders to share examples of good practice, while Kayla offers peer support focusing on speech and language and arranges training sessions on the Every Child a Talker (ECAT) project.

More recently, while the group has not been able to meet during the pandemic, Kayla has kept in touch with the childminders and continued to share examples of best practice via Facebook. While her setting was closed, she continued to support her families by sending them activity ideas and calling regularly to keep in touch. She also read stories to children over Whatsapp.

In order to further support her families, Kayla set up a live Facebook page during lockdown on which she read a story a day using resources, puppets and oversized books. She started with local parents, childminders and children logging in, but within a week, more than 2,000 people were joining the sessions with their children. Kayla never missed a day, despite having two children of her own at home.

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Julie & Jo’s Childcare

Julie has been the owner and manager of Julie & Jo’s Childcare for more than 20 years, caring for 100 children and maintaining the same love and passion for the job since day one.

She has a fantastic relationship with the children she looks after and they love spending time with her, as she consistently provides a culture of curiosity, awe and wonder that ignites and inspires their enthusiasm to play and learn, while always maintaining her beaming smile and positive energy.

She has made a huge financial contribution to the care she provides by extending her house to provide a purpose-built facility, including child-friendly toilets to help transitions to school, a separate sleeping area, sensory room, kitchen and Astroturf outdoor area.

She also purchased a minibus to take children on trips in and around the local community to build confidence and social skills outside the setting, as well to encourage the children to gain more knowledge and understanding of the local area.

FINALISTS

Kate’s Childcare

Vicki Chenery

CRITERION

Open to settings where childminders are working with other childminders and/or assistants, including those registered as ‘childcare on domestic premises’

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