What is a Childminder?
A Childminder is a person who provides a childminding service as defined in the Childcare Act 1991 (Early Years Services) Regulations 2016.
This service refers to pre-school children looked after in the Childminders home. This service is offered for the full working day or for different periods during the day.
Under the Childcare Act 1991 (Early Years Services) Regulations 2016 a Childminder can care for up to five pre-school children (0 – 6 years) at any one time (this number is inclusive of the Childminders own pre-school children). Childminders who mind 4 or more preschool children or who mind 7 or more school age children or a mix of both, must complete a TUSLA Registration of their service.
When should I register my Childminding service with Tusla?
If a Childminder is caring for 4 or more pre-school children s/he is subject to the (Childcare Act 1991 ( Early Years Services) Regulations 2016) and is obliged to register with Tusla. The Childminder is obliged to give TUSLA 3 months notice prior to taking on their 4th pre-school child.
At present, Childminders can legally care for 3 or fewer pre-school children without being obliged to register with Tusla. This number includes the childminders own children. Only 2 of these children can be aged 15 months or less. A childminder may not care for more than 5 pre-school children at any one time. For more information on how many children you can mind as a childminder and when you need to register with Tusla, click here.
It is recommended that all Childminders, emergency contact person and any adult who may be in contact with the children in the service, apply for Garda Vetting. For details of how to apply for Garda Vetting through Barnardos click here.
Tusla has Childminding Sample policies and procedures available here. https://www.tusla.ie/services/preschool-services/early-years-quality-and-regulatory-framework/#PPPGs These templates and samples may assist childminders in developing or revising their own set of required policies, procedures and statements. These suggested samples and templates are just that – samples will need to be adapted to reflect the Childminding Service.
Wexford County Childcare Committee have the following resources available for childminders:
- Childminding Sample Record Keeping Forms
- Guidelines on Planning a Childminding Business in your own home
- Childminding Sample Policies and Procedures
If you require these resources contact the office on 0539237156 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on all areas of childminding go to Childminding Ireland.
The National Action Plan for Childminding (2021- 2028)
The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) developed a National Action Plan for Childminding (NAPC) which was published in April 2021. The Action Plan aims to improve access, through childminding, to high quality and affordable early learning and care and school-age childcare. You can find out more information on the NAPC here.
Wexford County Childcare Committee supports childminders to:
- avail of relevant up to date childminding information
- develop appropriate Policies and Procedures
- access funding supports such as The Childminding Development Grant and Learner Fund Bursary for Childminders
- participate in local network opportunities with other Childminders
- avail of local training opportunities
- avail of the Childcare Services Relief with Revenue
- register with Tusla (if applicable)
- offer the National Childcare Scheme (NCS)
- remove the isolation often experienced by Childminders
- connect with parents who are seeking childminding care
- have their names included on a public list of Childminders which is made available to parents