View Full Version : Starting a Childminding Group...Help!

11-06-2009, 04:54 PM

I am relatively newly registered, just dealt with the daunting first Ofsted grading visit and have organised a meeting next week to set up a local childminding group.... all going swimmingly except it seems to be being hijacked by Early Years!

EY round here are acting a bit demented at the moment... 'support visits' have become 'monitoring visits', we get nasty letters telling us our training is out of dtae (when it isn't) and threatening to tell Ofsted about it..... and quite frankly i don't want them anywhere near the meeting...

the idea is that it is by childminders FOR childminders, to give support on a day to day basis when times are tough or we need a bit of mutual support instead of the formal stuff from EY who just tell us what we should be doing without any helpful ideas on how to do it...

Even the childrens' centre where the meeting will be have jumped on the bandwagon, advertising it to the whole city, which terrifies me....I've never done anything like this before and it is just snowballing into something I don't like the sound of!!

has anyone else here set one up?? How can i set things on the right track again? I wanted it to be local but I don't want to upset people who come!!

Help me, from a very panicking Jenni!!

11-06-2009, 05:46 PM
Didn't want to read and run but have no experience of doing this. Would it be possible to meet elsewhere, park perhaps, weather permitting?

I'm not sure how you would go about it other than just tell EY that you don't need their help, thanks but no thanks.

Good luck


11-06-2009, 06:59 PM
I think you'll find Early Years will get involved if you're using a Children's Centre, but hopefully might back off once things are up & running. We had a group that they weren't involved in, but when we moved to the Children Centre they took over. They left us to it once we'd got established.

It could actually be to your advantage to have Early Years involved from the beginning - they might provide the coffee & juice for your first few meetings!

11-06-2009, 07:20 PM
Thanks for that!

I think they have rubbed me up the wrong way a few times in recent months, being heavy handed and don't want them to put people off before we even get going!

Does your group meet every week?


11-06-2009, 07:31 PM
If this is any help jumpinjen, I attend a Childminding Group at the local Childrens Centre in Sandwell and we have loads of support from the childrens centre and the local council have come to meetings that have been set up. As far as I know they haven't hijacked our group or had any problems, just left us to it. Just thought I'd say as were from the same part of the world. :)

11-06-2009, 07:34 PM
What about setting up an informal network in each others homes, rotational style perhaps.

Sorry if I am being a bit dumb here - have you tried talking to the EY team (the head honcho) or even your CDO and explaining that the heavy handidness is unnecessary and frankly imtimidating. You'd welcome their input and support but they need to work with you to acheive the goals they seem to have

11-06-2009, 08:24 PM
Being informal and going to each other's homes is a great idea and i would love to know enough childminders to do that... I'm hoping to meet some more by getting everyone together!

I have discussed the letters with them but they didn't agree that they were threeatening and refused to apologise or change their approach with regards to finding out the dates that we had done our training.

Perhaps I should make a more formal approach to them but I don't want to rock the boat too much because i want to be an accredited childminder next year and have to be 'invited' into their network first so don't want to annoy them!!

Jenni x