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Why childminders aren’t educators

Childminders are all too often misunderstood. Still. So we thought we’d set the record straight once and for all to prove exactly why childminders definitely are not educators… they’re that and so much more.

Closely regulated

Just like a school, a college, a university, a pre-school or a nursery, Ofsted registers and inspects childminders for children aged from birth to 17 years.

Registered childcare providers, including childminders, have to meet requirements that relate to welfare and safety.

Childcarers, (again, including childminders) that are registered on the Early Years Register, caring for children aged from birth until 1 September following their 5th birthday, also have to meet requirements for children’s learning and development.

Learning and development. That sounds a lot like educating doesn’t it?

Providing the foundations

Childminders, alongside nursery workers, some nannies, and early years teachers, need a certain level of experience and a range of skills to work with children in order to deliver a the required standard of care and education. When caring for little ones (in England), it’s the Early Years Foundation Stage that they work to. The EYFS defines prime areas of learning, from communication and language, to physical development, to personal, social and emotional learning.

Childminders deliver this by creating an enabling environment in their home.

Not forgetting the planning, use of innovative resources, fun and learning through play. No mean feat for any childcare professional. 

Learning journeys

Talking of learning and development, childminders produce records of children’s interests and progress as they grow, learn and achieve in their setting.

That’s a whole lot of dedication and time given to write-ups, photos, notes and information to take in to help support and work with parents, show to the inspector and to help give children the best start in life.

Assessments and planning

In order to plan challenging and enjoyable experiences for children that help them make progress, childminders need to know the children well.

What they observe helps with planning and assessing where children are in their learning and development.

Pretty important stuff.

Fully insured and fully trained

It’s a requirement for childminders working from home to hold appropriate insurance – for their home, their car and any assistants or students that might work with them.

They’re also fully trained in paediatric first aid, CACHE accredited courses to understand child development, food hygiene, safeguarding and undertake regular continuous professional development in a number of other areas too.

Recognised by the Childcare minister

Childminders are pretty fundamental in allowing delivery of childcare for parents, including those that will be delivering the 30 hours free childcare from next year.

Childminder Minister, Sam Gyimah, after a visit to childminders in Portsmouth, said: “We want as many childcare options to be available to families as possible – and childminders are an important part of that choice.

“It was a pleasure to meet these hard-working childminders, hear their experiences and talk to them about what we’re doing to help them to thrive.”


It’s easy to forget that childminders do all this whilst running their own business from home. They’re responsible for all the things that come with being self-employed, including training, tax returns, health and safety and returning a profit.

Hmmm. Maybe childminders are educators and professionals after all?

This blog post refers to childminders in England only.

Karen Bailey
I would love to see a huge advertising campaign on all national TV chanels highlighting how Childminders undertake all EYFS paperwork care and education! - How about it PACEY?
21/05/2016 17:31:26

Lynda collings
very interesting article,it should also be in the P.A.C.E.Y magazine.The change of name for registered childminders needs to be changed to reflect the job we do as minder is so 7o's.Come on. i complete 12 sheets and counting when a new child starts, eyfs profile, daily diary, the list is endless.The general public needs to be educated.We need to have and article 70's childminding, 40 plus years on the name does not in anyway reflect the professional job we do, it has changed drastically over the years and most definately needs a rebrand, just as the P.A.C.E.Y. Magazine was changed to have a more professional name. I have listed many name changes over the years.Day care Supervisor,home based educator,pre-school carer,early years, educator and carer, professional day carer,professional early years educator and many more.Childminder,the name for almost 50 years??!!!!!!!!!
06/05/2016 15:28:53

My partner is a childminder and I have nothing but admiration for the work she does with the children of all ages .
20/02/2016 14:11:48

I can always rely on PACEY to set the record straight. Someone needs to go on TV, Good Morning Britain in particular given comments aired this week, and put the record straight regarding the professionalism of all childminders. I worked extremely hard to get my Outstanding in Sept 2015 under the new framework and I find it frustrating to hear some of the comments made about childminders.
19/02/2016 10:19:44

Karyn Cuthbert
Thank you PACEY for having to fight our corner! Let's hope that this helps to set the record straight.
19/02/2016 08:29:58

Hayley Peaple
I so needed this today. Even though all of my current parents are just awesome I had to tell a (now previous) client last month that she sees me as nothing more than a babysitter and that my opinion is totally negated by her at all times......just 2 weeks into the contract. Thank you Pacey for reminding me why I do my job and do it so well!!
18/02/2016 19:17:36

Andrea Turner
so sad that we even have to put this out there. Stay strong everybody, our families know how hard we work as do the other professionals who work alongside us. Thank you PACEY for, once again, championing our professionalism.
18/02/2016 07:04:42

May be some of these people should stop thinking childminders are just glorified babysitters because we are not
17/02/2016 20:38:36

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