View Full Version : Assistant - what can and cannot do??

26-04-2012, 07:16 PM
Have registered my 16 year old daughter. Have been told she cannot be left on the premisses unsupervised, have read ofsted factsheet which says the same thing, but does not state what she can and cannot do with regards to care.

Cananyone shed any light on this?

Also what is classed as unsupervised. My dining room goes staright onto my living room via an arch way. If i am in the living room to do a childs nappy and she is in the dining room doing art work with a mindee, is this classed as unsupervied. Or is liek with minded children as long as I can see or hear her?

buzzy bee
26-04-2012, 08:46 PM
I'm not 100% sure what she can and cannot do... my mum is registered as my assistant but I have in my policies that I'm the only one who changes nappies etc.

She does have her Ped.1st aid so I can (and do) leave her alone with mindees with parents permission - e.g. if I go on school run sometimes I leave her at home with littlies, or sometimes if I have a doctor appointment or something she will stay with the kiddies.

But even before she had her 1st aid, I had on my Ofsted certificate and in my policies / permission slips that she could be left alone with children for short period of times - to cover things like you say like if I go to the loo or am making lunch then she can be alone in another room with kids. I'm pretty sure that as long as someone has CRB check you can do this - e.g. if you have another CM over they can be alone with the kids if you leave the room, so I think it's the same with your assistant (someone please correct me if I'm wrong!)

Hope that helps.

26-04-2012, 08:51 PM
Thank you for the reply, thats what i was thinking of, just so that she can help out when say I am in the kitchen and littles are in the dining room, which is just off the kitchen. Or when i get home and bring them in she can carry the little ones in while i sort out the buggy, as my hall is more like a very small square lol.

I will add this to permissions, is there any other paperwork i might need?

27-04-2012, 09:43 AM
Don't understand that!
I have worked along side assistants for 4 years
And they have been left on my premises for short periods
Of time looking after children. Assistants can do school runs ect as far as I'm a wear with parents permission

buzzy bee
27-04-2012, 10:00 AM
Don't understand that!
I have worked along side assistants for 4 years
And they have been left on my premises for short periods
Of time looking after children. Assistants can do school runs ect as far as I'm a wear with parents permission

I was told by Ofsted that they can only stay on premises alone or do school runs if they have their paediatric first aid.

buzzy bee
27-04-2012, 10:01 AM
I will add this to permissions, is there any other paperwork i might need?

Not that I know of.

I did get my assistant to sign the same list of policies I get all my parents to sign - to say she'd read all my policies and procedures.

lollipop kid
27-04-2012, 10:09 AM
Hi, I have an assistant myself, and on the form I originally submitted to Ofsted, I specified on there the situations where my assistant might be left alone with the children for short periods of time. As well as doing school runs, I asked that the assistant be allowed to be in sole charge of the children for up to 3 hours (and included on there the scenario that I may have to take a child to hospital, or go myself; so 3 hours may be necessary due to travel to and from hospital, plus waiting time once there).

As soon as my assistant had her Paediatric first aid certificate, I emailed a scan of this to Ofsted and they sent me my new certificate with the assistant variation on it. I then got all of the parents to sign a permission form to say that the assistant could be left in sole charge of their child for short periods of time, not exceeding 3 hours. (I am also careful to ensure that if she is alone with the children, then there are no more than 3 EYs with her, as I'm not sure how things stand should she be over a single minder's numbers. Perhaps someone could clarify if they know?)

(That way, when I broke my toe and had to go to hospital, I managed to take most of the children with me, but a morning child that I have stayed with the assistant, who then took him to nursery at lunchtime, as otherwise, if he'd come with me, he would have missed his session. On another occasion, one of the children got stung by a wasp, and the sting started to swell, so I took him to casualty immediately as I was worried about anaphylactic shock. It was close to the pick up time of another child, so they stayed with the assistant so their parent wouldn't have to pick up at the hospital, as this may have worried or distressed them.)

I hope this helps. :thumbsup:

karen m
27-04-2012, 11:00 AM
I was at a Forum meeting earlier this week and we were told maximum length of time is 2 hours in a whole day,so if they were left for 40 minutes while you did school run in the morning then, throughout the rest of the day they would only have 1 hour 20 minutes left , and only if they have pediatric first aid

lollipop kid
27-04-2012, 11:15 AM
Hi, I'd check the timespan with Ofsted, as I asked for 3 hours and got it. (I don't have a car, so our local hospital is a 30 minute bus ride away, plus the buses are at irregular times, so there can be up to a 30 minute wait each way. That's 2 hours in itself! Then add the hospital waiting time/appointment time and you only just about make it back within the 3 hours.)

Ofsted were fine with this, as that is what I put on my form, and in my case, as long as the parents signed permissions to that effect, Ofsted were happy.

Interestingly, it only says on my certificate "may leave an assistant alone with children for short periods of time providing the arrangements are agreed and confirmed in writing by parents and the requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage and the Childcare Register continue to be met."

I took this to mean that she has to work in accordance with my policies, and have Paediatric first aid. I also got her onto Child Protection training as I thought it would be useful. I'm also planning to get her onto Food Hygiene training, but I have made her aware of the contents of my Food Standards Agency document "Safer Food, Better Business for Childminders", and I tend to do all of the food preparation, anyway.

I have looked through the EYFS documents and various Ofsted documents for a timespan, but couldn't find one. If anyone knows of a document where there is a timespan written down, please do let me know for compliance reasons. Thanks in advance!

27-04-2012, 11:18 AM
Don't understand that!
I have worked along side assistants for 4 years
And they have been left on my premises for short periods
Of time looking after children. Assistants can do school runs ect as far as I'm a wear with parents permission

I was told that as my daughter is 16 she cannot be left unsupervised with children, over 18's and i think 17yr olds can be up to 2 hours).....

27-04-2012, 11:20 AM
Thank you for all the replies, I will get her to sign and read policies and procedures, I am telling her as i go along too, as there are just so many to remember. With her being under 18 she cannot be left unattended, but that suits me fine as it is only for an extra pair of hands.

I was told about the pediatric first aid too, will be worth her having when she is a little older anyway.

I did it over the phone so no form to fill in, she had already had her CRB and EY2 done so i suppose as i was not leaving her alone and she would be supervised by me it was pretty straight forward.

SO am i right that i could leve her in the garden with the older ones while I am in the kitchen as i can see and hear everyone, as long as she is not left alone on the premisies, she can be in the next room with the munchkins.

27-04-2012, 11:33 AM
Loollipop kid, thanks - my daughter has done GCSE Food technology and coverec food hygiene there and also done a cook stewrad course with the cadets and got a food hygiene cetificate then, so thats a bonus.

Veggie sausage - i will have to try and find out about the age thing, as when she truns 17 it would be useful for school runs if weather very bad. she is 17 in Jan. What gets e is i have called ofsted and each persomn told me different things, i only found abut a 16 year old being able to be an assistant from this froum ( love you all :))

27-04-2012, 12:33 PM
When I applied to register my partner as assistant I didn't have to do anything as already CRB and EY2 checked as living on premises. My partner, at a later date did the paediatric first aid and I email scanned Ofsted a copy and they amended my certificate so could be left alone for short periods with parental consent.

When I took on my newest assistant she filled in the CRB and EY2, already had paediatric first aid so we sent it all off at the same time and she was approved within 2 weeks :D

Both my assistants have also been on the basic safeguarding training and hold food hygiene certificates (due to their other jobs) so i trust them to undertake the same roles I do - playing, supervising and supporting both myself and the children - this includes changing nappies, assisting with potty training, preparing snacks/meals, undertaking school runs etc. I usually do all the paperwork myself but that is only because I have OCD about things like that plus I know my systems!!

On both applications I put that my assistant would be left with no more than 4 children in the EY due to variations in place :) and no more than 6 children at any one time.

When I asked Ofsted to define "short period" they said it was usually under 2 hours but would be down to childminder and circumstances at the end of the day eg realistically a hospital trip is likely to take longer than 2 hours!

In the new EYFS I am sure that I read somewhere that they have specified "2 hours at any one time" ... Maybe Sarah707 will magically appear to confirm this?! ;) x

27-04-2012, 02:23 PM
I spoke to Ofsted about this a few hours ago and they have told me that assistants can be left alone for "short periods of time" as at the moment in the current EYFS there isnt a time scale specified but in the new one it states "no more than 2 hours at a time in any one day" so from September they will only be allowed to be left for 2 hours max...i asked about leaving my assistant for longer and was told this wouldnt be possible

Chatterbox Childcare
27-04-2012, 02:28 PM
I think the reason you are having conflicting information is because a person cannot be left until they are 17 and all the approvals are in place:

approved by ofsted
First Aid
Parental permission
employers liability insurance

In my council we have to have a work permit too

My DD is 15 and she is alone with the children. This month she will be 16 and still be along with them, might not be worth registering her as an assistant as she won't be working as one until she is 17 and can be left alone.