Find out more about becoming a childcare provider on Wirral

If you would like support, advice, guidance on how to set up a childcare provision in Wirral please contact the Family Information Service either by email: fis@wirral.gov.uk or call 0151 666 3980.

You will then be directed to the appropriate Quality Improvement and Training Officer for the area in which you wish to set up your childcare provision.

Quality Improvement and Training Officers

Quality Improvement and Training Officers are experienced child care professionals who support all registered childcare provision within Wirral.

They provide advice on setting up childcare in the first instance including Ofsted registration requirements, environmental issues, such as whether your home or proposed provision is suitable, sufficiency in the area where you are thinking of setting up childcare, required training etc and will continue to support you until your Ofsted registration visit.

OFSTED

You will need to meet Ofsted requirements and have appropriate health checks and DBS checks to ensure that you are suitable to work with children before Ofsted will consider registering you.

Further information about the registration process and the online application form can be accessed at the Ofsted website.

Most providers caring for children under 8 years old for more than 2 hours a day in England must register with Ofsted. If you’re a childminder, you can register with a childminder agency instead.

To register, you need to be 18 or over and have the right to work in the United Kingdom.

It is a criminal offence to provide unregistered childcare, or childcare on unapproved premises, if you are legally required to register. Ofsted are responsible for carrying out a range of checks to ensure that only people who are suitable and ready to provide childcare are registered.

After your successful Ofsted registration visit, we will continue to support you for the thirty months (or less) leading up to your first Ofsted inspection. This will be in the form of one to one support visits, telephone and email communications as appropriate.

You will receive a copy of Wirral’s Early Years Quality Improvement File and Toolkit, be invited to our termly Early Years Provider cluster meetings and receive weekly email updates from the Quality Improvement and Training and Business Support Teams.

Once you are an Ofsted registered childcare provider you can apply to become a funding provider for children who are accessing 2, 3 and 4-year-old funding.

Information for prospective childminders

To become an Ofsted registered childminder caring for children 0-19 years, you will need to do the following:

  • complete an appropriate childminder training course – available online through organisations such as ‘Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years’ (PACEY) or ‘The Learning Alliance.’ If you have a recent working knowledge of the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework or appropriate childcare qualifications you may not have to undertake a training course, you would need to check this with Ofsted and your quality improvement officer can also give advice on this aspect of the process.
  • you will also be required to attend a full 12 hour Paediatric first aid course as will any assistants working with you who might be in sole charge of children for a period of time. This first aid course will need to be renewed every three years.
  • have a good knowledge of the Early Year Foundation Stage Statutory framework which is the framework that sets standards for the learning development and care of children from birth to 5 years old for all Ofsted early years registered provision including schools. If you have no previous experience of this framework you will be introduced to it on the childminder training course and will need to devote time to develop a full understanding with the support of your Quality Improvement and training Officer. All relevant documents relating to the EYFS can be found at: foundationyears.org.uk website.
  • create an appropriate home environment. Your Quality Improvement Officer can come and visit your proposed childcare establishment to give advice and guidance on layout, risk assessment, health and safety, planning, etc.
  • you also need to be aware that although Ofsted may register you to care for up to 6 children, presently under Wirral planning law you are not able to care for more than 4 children, on a commercial basis within your home unless you obtain planning permission. This aspect of planning is under review at present and we would suggest that you contact the planning department for individual enquiries: Contact details for Wirral Planning Department are: 0151 691 8454 or via the planning website.

HMRC provides free online seminars giving tax advice for childminders   

Further Training

Find out further information about training for Early Years providers.