LInk to ET's report on deregulation
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  1. #1
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    Default LInk to ET's report on deregulation

    Centreforum.org/assets/pubs/affordable-quality.pdf

    Makes interesting reading, especially the bits about increasing ratios and agency fees where the suggestion is the agency takes between 5% and 20% of the fee.

    Miffy xx
    Keep smiling!

  2. #2
    Lady Haha Guest

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    Having just read this paper for the first time (I'm ashamed to admit) I am wondering if it's such a bad idea (don't all shoot me!). I will keep fighting to keep things as they are, BUT! If we fail in our mission, the alternative doesn't sound as bad as I thought it would be.

    It answers all the questions we have been asking:

    Yes, parents using an agency to find a childminder will be able to use tax credits (or universal credit as it will be then).

    The fee the agency will charge us, covers the cost of training, insurance, being regulated, advertising, blah blah

    Although childminders will lose their individual grades, the Netherlands website they have shown here, where parents can choose a childminder, has lists of childminders with thier qualifications etc etc, so the 'best' ones will stand out (I am only satisfactory because I have no EYFS kids, so this wouldn't help me, but it still sounds fair).

    The agency will help with business plans and marketing (and here is the key bit) because childminders tend to be SELF EMPLOYED.

    It sounds to me kind of like the FIS, where parents can find a childminder, contact the childminder, visit the childminder, choose the childminder, deal directly with the childminder about their child etc, but once they have chosen the childminder, they would go back to the agency and be paying the agency instead of us (whatever fees we and the parent agree on!) Sounds to me like we are still self employed, its just the money goes to the agency first. Now although, this seems a terrible idea......what about all those late payments we get, what about chasing parents for money, what about parents leaving without paying notice, what about all those parents overclaiming......wouldnt be our problem anymore. I would assume the agency would still pay us for work done (on a self employed basis) but those fees we have been paying the agency would cover the agency chasing payments, losses etc on our behalf.

    Put like this, it doesn't sound too bad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackandsparkly View Post
    Having just read this paper for the first time (I'm ashamed to admit) I am wondering if it's such a bad idea (don't all shoot me!). I will keep fighting to keep things as they are, BUT! If we fail in our mission, the alternative doesn't sound as bad as I thought it would be.

    It answers all the questions we have been asking:

    Yes, parents using an agency to find a childminder will be able to use tax credits (or universal credit as it will be then).

    The fee the agency will charge us, covers the cost of training, insurance, being regulated, advertising, blah blah

    Although childminders will lose their individual grades, the Netherlands website they have shown here, where parents can choose a childminder, has lists of childminders with thier qualifications etc etc, so the 'best' ones will stand out (I am only satisfactory because I have no EYFS kids, so this wouldn't help me, but it still sounds fair).

    The agency will help with business plans and marketing (and here is the key bit) because childminders tend to be SELF EMPLOYED.

    It sounds to me kind of like the FIS, where parents can find a childminder, contact the childminder, visit the childminder, choose the childminder, deal directly with the childminder about their child etc, but once they have chosen the childminder, they would go back to the agency and be paying the agency instead of us (whatever fees we and the parent agree on!) Sounds to me like we are still self employed, its just the money goes to the agency first. Now although, this seems a terrible idea......what about all those late payments we get, what about chasing parents for money, what about parents leaving without paying notice, what about all those parents overclaiming......wouldnt be our problem anymore. I would assume the agency would still pay us for work done (on a self employed basis) but those fees we have been paying the agency would cover the agency chasing payments, losses etc on our behalf.

    Put like this, it doesn't sound too bad.
    I can see what you're saying, but...

    It has also been suggested that nurseries and children's centres set themselves up as agencies - would you be happy to have a local nursery or children's centre inspecting you and effectively running your business?

    My outstanding grade is important to me and my parents. I have got a lot of work and enquiries because of it. Why should I lose that?

    Who says an agency would pay us even if a parent didn't pay their fees? The agency may well chase the fees for us, but is it guaranteed they would pay us regardless? And a suggestion has been made that the agency would set our fees. I wouldn't welcome being told what I could charge.

    And I wouldn't want to pay an agency to help with marketing, business plans or advertising. Why pay for something I don't need? I have run my own business very successfully for almost 18 years. Why would I want to start paying someone, for whom I am likely to have little respect, to do something I do perfectly well for myself?

    Also, it's not just WHAT is being said, but how it's being done. As far as I know there has been no childminder consultation regarding these proposals. We are self employed business people who are being told how our businesses are to be run. Can you imagine any other self employed professionals accepting that?

    For what it's worth (and my view might not be popular!) I do believe the agency scheme would work well for some childminders. But I don't believe it should be forced on those of us who don't want it.
    Last edited by Mouse; 27-05-2012 at 10:36 AM.

  4. #4
    Lady Haha Guest

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    ah, yes, I hadn't thought of who the agencies might actually be! As I look after schoolies, I would be insulted if the school I pick up from inspected me! They're useless, so I can see your point! Lets hope it doesn't come to that then. It was kind of just a small ray of hope that I won't have to give up childminding altogether if parents couldn't pay me with credits of whatever type. Obviously, I want it to stay just the way it is, warts n all!

  5. #5
    Penny1959 Guest

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    It is worth remembering that anyone could tender to be an agency - ET herself has said that I could if I wanted to.


    This means that we could end up with:
    Someone who knows nothing about childminding and just wants to make a profit.

    Someone who knows about childminding and insists we all do paperwork etc - their way

    Someone with lower standards than our own

    Someone who does not like childminding as an option and so will promote other types of settings - especially their prefered option

    Or (although I would not do this) a childminder run one - where all hers / his best friends got perks / enquires etc.

    Further more ET thinks there could be a 2 tier system - where some choose to be registered by Ofsted - and some choose to registered via an agency.

    At the moment everything is too vague - not enough detail and too many 'add on' ideas being discussed.

    Penny
    Last edited by Penny1959; 27-05-2012 at 11:14 AM.

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    As well as everything above...

    On the estate where I live there are 5 childminders - 1 is outstanding... 2 are good... 3 are satisfactory.

    1 of us offers funded sessions.

    We all charge different fees... we all offer a different service to parents... we all have different paperwork and policies etc

    We all work different days - some full time, some part time etc...

    In fact everything about us is different except we live near each other and have similar sized houses - minus the odd conservatory of course!

    So why are some of us full and some not? That's down to parent choice.

    They can currently decide whether to pay a bit extra or not... whether to choose someone with a lower ratio... whether to choose someone who is funded or not...

    I do not want to be forced to have the same grading as everyone else with the same fees, the same paperwork, the same everything.

    I do not want to have to work harder with more children to earn the same as I do now.

    I definitely do not want someone with possibly lower qualifications and standards than me telling me how to operate my business and grading me.

    I feel like Hannay in the Buchan play 'The 39 Steps' ... I am not a number! I am a name! I am an individual!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sarah707 View Post
    I feel like Hannay in the Buchan play 'The 39 Steps' ... I am not a number! I am a name! I am an individual!
    I thought that was from the Prisoner.

    "I am not a number. I am a free man"...or in this case, a self employed childminder!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Penny1959 View Post
    At the moment everything is too vague - not enough detail and too many 'add on' ideas being discussed.

    Penny
    I think that is the real crux of the problem at the moment.

    ET has done a paper looking at deregulation. I don't for one minute believe she thought anyone would actually take much notice of it, let alone a bunch of determined childminders!
    Her paper posed more questions than it answered...but thanks to email and twitter these rather pesky childminders (as she must view them!) have been able to pick her paper to pieces and ask some very pertinent questions. She's had to answer questions she'd never even considered and seems to be doing it off the top of her head (well, it could be this, or it could be that). She's having to come up with possible solutions without having the time or knowledge to think it through sensibly or logically.

    It all becomes a big mess with no real answers and no real proposals, just a lot of vague possibilities

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
    I thought that was from the Prisoner.

    "I am not a number. I am a free man"...or in this case, a self employed childminder!
    Oh you are probably right it was many many years ago

    At least it proves you got to the end of my message!


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    totally agree with you Sarah I don't want to be told what to charge, I charge a little less than many ofmy friends as I can't drive and I only provide snacks not meals therefore I don't feel that I can justify charging the same as everyone else. I also have done a lot more training than some of the other minders and therefore would resent being graded the same as them when I have put so much time and effort and made so many sacrifices to do this. But finally Sarah has hit the nail on the head for me why should I take on more children-equating to more observations/pathways etc for less money? I don't believe this will help me or be good for the childrens' emotional and physical wellbeing

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    Of course there is another question to ask Ms Truss.

    Exactly how many agencies does she think there will be in a single LA?

    Is this going to be like job agencies - where a childminder has to sign up with all of them? does a parent need to visit multiple agencies in order to find one childminder? will the childminder have to have different paperwork, policies etc per agency they sign up with?

    If its determined only one agency per LA - then who will determine who will be the best person for the job?

    AND when we want to complain about how the agency is run - because we will - who would we complain to? how will those complaints be managed.


    I just see that it makes it MORE complicated to get childcare not less.

    Ms Truss says she wants reform to make childminding a more appealing profession - she wants to encourage more people into it. Well how about start a media campaign where we highlight just how blinking fantastic we are, champion how professional we are, what a fabulous job we do - and have lots of media hype surrounding childminding as a postive profession - now THAT would tell people that this is a worthwhile job rather than telling people that we are over regulated - drowning in paperwork - leaving the profession thats is advertising a few of the negatives and NONE of the positives.

    I don't like her paper, I don't like her ideas and actually i'm fast deciding I don't like her very much either!
    triangle sandwiches are better than square ones...

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    and what about allowing childminders to access the early years funding for 2/3 year olds? it seems to vary where you live, but in my LA it takes about a year to become accredited and involves so many hoops to jump through, surely if cm's met certain criteria such as ofsted grading and qualifications they could be entitiled to claim the funding, this would give parents more choice if that is a key reason for ET's deregulation proposal? or does she just want to get rid of us one way or another?

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    Quote Originally Posted by watgem View Post
    and what about allowing childminders to access the early years funding for 2/3 year olds? it seems to vary where you live, but in my LA it takes about a year to become accredited and involves so many hoops to jump through, surely if cm's met certain criteria such as ofsted grading and qualifications they could be entitiled to claim the funding, this would give parents more choice if that is a key reason for ET's deregulation proposal? or does she just want to get rid of us one way or another?
    I think the plan is / was to allow childminders to access the 2 year old funding, it may have changed!
    I can currently offer funded places as I was asked to join the pilot scheme last year but I know a few childminders who have been told that come september they will be able to offer it too.
    The guidlines for being able to offer it were very hazy.
    It was suggested that you should be accredited, then that you should have a level 3 or above, then that it should be on Ofsted grading of good or above, then you should have all 3 things.
    I had to have a level 3 and be good or outstanding, I've also had to meet with a sure start teacher 3 times in the last year, attend talking matters and let's interact courses and move up so many levels on a grading system they have.
    I think it's different in all areas though, and this is just my experience of it

  14. #14
    Lady Haha Guest

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    I had an eureka moment!

    I will register myself as an agency and the only person on my books will be me. I will inspect myself and give myself glowing reports and I will set my fees, do my business plan, invoices, marketing etc and charge myself 20% for doing that and put that charge down as expenses

    Finally found a way of getting paid for the admin side

    Problem solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackandsparkly View Post
    I had an eureka moment!

    I will register myself as an agency and the only person on my books will be me. I will inspect myself and give myself glowing reports and I will set my fees, do my business plan, invoices, marketing etc and charge myself 20% for doing that and put that charge down as expenses

    Finally found a way of getting paid for the admin side

    Problem solved.
    love it!
    if you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackandsparkly View Post
    I had an eureka moment!

    I will register myself as an agency and the only person on my books will be me. I will inspect myself and give myself glowing reports and I will set my fees, do my business plan, invoices, marketing etc and charge myself 20% for doing that and put that charge down as expenses

    Finally found a way of getting paid for the admin side

    Problem solved.
    That's brilliant we'll all register as agencies and have great reports
    Love it

 

 

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