Childminding Information

Launch of the ‘Draft Childminding Action Plan’

On 29th September The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone TD, launched the Draft Childminding Action Plan, for the purpose of public consultation. The Draft Action Plan sets out proposals for improving access to high quality and affordable early learning and care and school-age childcare through childminding.

As well as publishing the Draft Action Plan, the Minister also launched a public consultation process on the proposals. She invites childminders, parents, other stakeholders and anyone interested in childminding to share their views. A call for submissions and online survey are available on the Department’s website (www.dcya.gov.ie), and a number of focus groups of childminders will take place over the coming weeks.  The Draft Action Plan sets out proposals for improving access to high quality and affordable early learning and care and school-age childcare through childminding.

For further information, please see www.dcya.gov.ie/docs/EN/29-08-2019-Minister-Zappone-launches-Draft-Childminding-Action-Plan/5521.htm 

Pathway to a quality support and assurance system for childminding

“Pathway to a Quality Support and Assurance System for Childminding in Ireland” was launched on 26th March 2018 by the Working Group on Reforms and Supports for the Childminding Sector.
At its launch, Minister Katherine Zappone recognised the valuable contribution that childminders make to the childcare sector and stated that childminders must be integral in the development of a new childminding system.
The report provides a clear picture of childminding in Ireland today and makes proposals for a support system for childminders and a regulatory system that is designed to recognise, promote and support good quality childminding.  The report and support documentation can be accessed below:

Pathway to a quality support and assurance system for childminding Volume 1:  Summary report of the Working Group on reforms and supports for the childminding sector, January 18

Pathway to a quality support and assurance system for childminding Volume 2:  Support Documents referenced by The Expert Working Group on reforms and supports for the childminding sector, March 10

A Step by Step Guide to Becoming a Professional Childminder

Kerry County Childcare Committee’s childminder support pack ‘A Step by Step Guide to becoming a Professional Childminder’ has been developed for anyone interested in accessing information about setting up/developing a childminding business in their own home. It includes the following:

  • ‘Childminding – First Steps’: This booklet contains information on skills, roles & responsibilities of a childminder; legal aspects of childminding; commonly asked questions.
  • National Guidelines for Childminders
  • Voluntary Notification Form
  • ‘Childminding – Next Steps’: This book contains information on developing policies & procedures; appropriate record keeping; garda vetting; health & safety awareness; etc.
  • Templates – record keeping; policies & procedures.
  • Financial Management – registering your business; calculating tax; income & expenditure
  • Information on Aistear & Siolta
  • Information on healthy eating for children
  • Insurance – contact details for insurance providers.
  • Training schedule for the year.
  • Child Welfare & Protection Information for Childminders.
  • General information, i.e. road safety, car safety, safety in the home, healthy eating, etc.

If you are interested in getting information on setting up a childminding business contact Denise Quinlan, Childminder Advisory Officer and she will forward you a copy of ‘Childminding – First Steps’ and ‘National Guidelines for Childminders’.

If after reading these you require further information or support, Denise can arrange a meeting with you where she will go through the remainder of the support pack.

Denise can be contacted on (066) 7181582 / (087) 9676603 or email: denise@kerrycountychildcare.com

Support for Parents

The Childminder Advisory Officer’s role is also to support parents who are looking for a childminder. Childminding provides parents with the opportunity to have their children cared for in a home-based childcare setting. Kerry County Childcare provides a database of Tusla registered & voluntary notified childminders in Kerry and their contact details are made available to parents who contact Kerry County Childcare looking for a childminder.

Childminding Regulations

 In relation to preschool age children: 

A childminder should look after no more than 5 preschool children (birth – 6 years).  Childminders who care for up to 3 children may choose to Voluntary Notify Kerry County Childcare.  Childminders who care for 4 or more children are legally required to register their childminding service with Tusla prior to caring for the 4th minded child.

In relation to school age childcare

If a childminder cares for school age children only, the childminder can care for up to 12 children in a family home.  A childminder can care for up to 6 school age children without having to register with Tusla, however the care of 7 or more school age children requires such childminders to register their childminding service with Tusla.

Childminders who care for a mix of preschool and school age children:

The maximum numbers of each that you can care for at the same time is as follows:

No. of preschool children cared for

(0 – 6 years)

Maximum no of school age children than can be cared for

(6+ yrs)

1

10

2

7

3

5

4

2

5

1

All scenarios in the table above will require a childminder to register their service with Tusla. See https://www.tusla.ie/services/preschool-services/new-providers/ for further details.

In order to be exempt from registration, a childminder must be caring for not more than 6 children (other than the person’s own children) at the same time, and not more than 3 of the children can be of preschool age e.g. the care of 3 preschool children and 3 school age children or the care of 5 school age children and 1 preschool child at the same time.

The following document from Tusla may be beneficial to you:  https://www.tusla.ie/uploads/content/15.11.2018_Tusla_Early_Years_Service_Registration_Questions_Answers_V2_word_.pdf

The Quality & Regulatory Frameworks for individual service types can be accessed as follows:  https://www.tusla.ie/services/preschool-services/early-years-quality-and-regulatory-framework/

For additional information on types of childminders you can download our information leaflet Choosing a Childminder – A Guide for Parents‘.

Kerry County Childcare Committee does not recommend any childminder, however we facilitate contact between childminders and parents.

The Childminder Advisory Officer has developed an information booklet for parents –Choosing a Childminder – A Guide for Parents which offers assistance to parents when sourcing home-based childcare.

If you would like a list of registered & voluntary notified childminders then please contact Denise or Pamela on (066) 7181582 or email denise@kerrycountychildcare.com / pamela@kerrycountychildcare.com

Childminding Tax Exemption

Childminders who make themselves known to their local City/County Childcare Committee can avail of the Childminding Tax Exemption on their childminding Income. The details of the scheme are as follows:

  • The exemption applies only to childminders who are self-employed.
  • The childminding service must be provided in the childminder’s own home.
  • The childminder may mind up to 3 children (under 18 years) at any one time, excluding the childminder’s own children.  A childminder could, conceivably, mind 3 children in the mornings and 3 different children in the afternoon and still qualify.
  • The gross annual income from childminding cannot exceed the limit (currently €15,000).
  • A childminder must submit an income tax return each year, even if there is no tax liability.
  • A childminder will be required to pay a flat rate of PRSI for the year, currently €500.  This is their contribution towards such benefits as Old Age Contributory Pension, Maternity Benefit.

If a childminder does not apply for the Tax Exemption or is earning over €15,000 gross per annum, then their income is fully taxable.  However, a childminder is entitled to deduct a variety of expenses which they may have incurred in earning that income before tax is applied i.e. toys, equipment, food etc specifically for the children being minded.

For further details contact Denise on (066) 7181582 to obtain a copy of our publication Guidelines on Planning a Childminding Business in your Home 2019

Childminder Development Grants (CMDG) 2019:

The DCYA have made a change to the administration of the Childminder Development Grant for 2019, as a result of which Meath County Childcare Committee has been given the task of administering applications on behalf of all City/County Childcare Committees. This provides national consistency in implementation and equal access of opportunity to make an application for all eligible childminders. All Childminders wishing to make an application will do so to Meath County Childcare Committee to the address stated on the application form, who will process their application.

Kerry Childminders who wish to apply for a grant can download the DCYA 2019 CMDG Application Form, complete it and submit it to Denise at Kerry County Childcare committee by post or by email.  Applications must also include evidence of up to date insurance and a copy of your ‘Introduction to Children First’ E-Learning certificate.  Denise will then complete the ‘Childcare Committee Confirmation of Childminder Details’ section of the form and forward the entire application to Meath CCC.

The ‘Introduction to Children First’ E-Learning Programme can be accessed at https://www.tusla.ie/children-first/children-first-e-learning-programme

If you have any queries in relation to the Childminder Development Grant (CMDG), please contact Denise on (066) 7181582 / 087 9676603 / denise@kerrycountychildcare.com.