A Childminder can offer a far more flexible style of childcare than the more formal arrangements of day nurseries or school clubs.
We are inspected regularly, by Ofsted, to ensure that me meet certain standards and are fully insured.
I am registered to care for no more than 6 children under the age of 8 and only 3 may be under 5 and of these only 1 may be under a year which means that children in my care will receive plenty of individual care and attention - a ratio that day nurseries and school clubs can not hope to achieve. (At times, however, I may be granted a "variation" which enables me to provide a continuation of care for a new family member, etc - at Ofsted's discretion)
Parents know that both they and their child will be forming a relationship with just one carer / key worker.
Recent research has shown that children benefit from care in a “family” style environment, where they can bond with a regular caregiver.
Childminders are able to provide a continuation of care for children from birth to teenagers.
Brothers and Sisters of all ages can be looked after together, including those of school age, offering a continuity of care, in a family unit, that other forms of childcare can not match.
More flexibility around meal times, sleep times and planned activities.
Hours are far more flexible than those of a day nursery or school club, especially valuable when parents work part-time or unusual hours.
Childminders offer greater flexibility because they work from their own homes, and are able to provide inclusive care in the child's local community - taking advantage of local activities.
The Families, Children and Child Care study said that Childminders are the next best thing to being at home with Mother. A Registered Childminder has the advantage of being able to offer good quality care for children in a secure, loving, home environment.