Become a childminder

  1. How to become a childminder

1. Why become a childminder?

If you’re organised, you’d like to be your own boss and you love working with children, childminding could be for you.

You get a grant to help set up, and there’s lots of support and help along the way.

You don’t need a huge house, to own your own home, or have special qualifications before you apply. But you will need to be:

  • caring
  • a determined, resilient childcare practitioner
  • keen to give children high-quality, professional childcare in East Sussex

If this sounds like you, keep reading to find out how to take your first steps.

How much can you earn?

For places the government fund you get:

  • 0-2s: £11.15 per hour
  • 2-year-olds: £8.20 per hour
  • 3-and-4-year-olds: £5.42 per hour

Please note, the amounts change every year. And they can go down as well as up.

For private places, you can set your own rates. And you can care for up to six children under 8. But:

  • only three can be under 5 years old
  • only one can be under 1-year-old

Remember to count your own children in these numbers.

Grants for new childminders

To help cover the cost of getting set up, you can apply for a grant when you register – up until March 2025.

  • £600 if you register with Ofsted as an independent childminder
  • £1200 if you register with an agency – as there are some extra costs

Childminder start-up grants scheme

Is it hard to set up?

You start with your agency or Ofsted registration. Next, you complete essential training courses and checks.

You’ll need to be ready for the challenges of running a business. But we help you at every step of your journey.

  • Telephone and email support for help and advice
  • Guidance through the registration process
  • Continued support for your first inspection and beyond

Email: Childcare Support Team

Telephone: 01323 463026 

What does a childminder do?

No two days are the same. Different childminders have different ways to make the perfect day for the children they look after.

For example, you might take them out on enriching day trips, or run fun activities in your home.

You’ll look after children aged 0 - 8 years old in your home. You can offer them a rich, play-based environment where they can explore and learn with lots of chances to try new things.

Also, you’ll need to get inspection-ready because Ofsted—or your agency if you register with one—inspect you from time to time. But you get lots of training to ensure you’ll be ready.

Why do parents choose childminders rather than nurseries?

A childminder is ideal for families who want professional childcare in a family-based setting.

Childminders offer more flexibility than a nursery. You can give families more options if something unexpected comes up.

Who can become a childminder?

Anyone can become a childminder and childminders come from all walks of life.

Some childminders want a job that suits their own children. Others change careers because they want to make a difference.

What childminders are saying in East Sussex

“Childminding can be very rewarding when you work closely with a child and their family. It’s the ultimate in job satisfaction when you can make a major difference in a child’s life. You can have a big influence on their progress, and sometimes help them achieve, and their family overcome, what previously seemed like a big struggle or barrier.”

“It gave me an income and allowed me to be at home with my own children when they were young.”

Was this page helpful?

Click or tap the rating which best represents your experience.