What's in a title?
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  1. #1
    Simona Guest

    Default What's in a title?

    Now that we are 'likely' to meet an 'agency' registered CM...how would you describe yourself if you intend to remain registered with Ofsted?

    Is independent CM a true reflection of our status?

    will you update your setting's paperwork to reflect this status?

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    As of yet none of my current parents or recent enquiries have even mentioned the word' agencies'. This may change of course over time but at the moment they are just interested in 'Ofsted registered' and most (not all) ask about insurance when they visit. I think they also value our first aid certificate, but realistically, as long as all of the above and the logistics of our address work, along with the hours and fees, then they have enough boxes ticked to begin making initial enquiries.

    I will continue to call myself 'Ofsted Registered Childminder' and don't see the point in updating any paperwork even if I was to change my status. Not enough hours in the day.

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    I think it's taken long enough to get people to call us childminders instead of babysitters, so I don't hold out much hope of them ever getting used to the difference between independent and agency childminders.

    At the moment most areas don't even have an agency, let along any agency childminders, so it's going to be a long while before there are enough of them for our title to become an issue. If/when it does, I'll reconsider, but for now I'm happy to be known as an Ofsted Registered Childminder

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
    I think it's taken long enough to get people to call us childminders instead of babysitters, so I don't hold out much hope of them ever getting used to the difference between independent and agency childminders.

    At the moment most areas don't even have an agency, let along any agency childminders, so it's going to be a long while before there are enough of them for our title to become an issue. If/when it does, I'll reconsider, but for now I'm happy to be known as an Ofsted Registered Childminder
    Same here.

    If I had an angency on my doorstep I may give it more thought. But round here there is no sign of one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by moggy View Post

    Same here.

    If I had an angency on my doorstep I may give it more thought. But round here there is no sign of one.
    Same here .... even my LA can't see how or why an agency would take in our mainly rural county. They looked at setting up an agency but couldn't make it cover it's costs without charging a large fortune... Even if most of the childminders in the county joined!

    I do have 'independent ofsted registered childminder' on some of my stuff, but generally I'm just known as 'the childminder'!

  6. #6
    Simona Guest

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    I hope I got this wrong ...but the message I am getting here is that 'as long as there is no agency on my doorstep''....everything is fine?

    An agency does not have to be on our doorstep to operate...if cms believe that they need to revisit the issue and understand how an agency can be run.

    I also understood we would fight agencies at 'any cost' as they are a threat to childminding....but it is ok to accept the few now as long as they don't personally affect us?

    A while back many cms were being sarcastic about the 'success' of agencies...how nothing was happening and no one was registering
    My message was that the secrecy and silence surrounding them was 'the worry' and we needed to be on the alert.

    History has been made now but for some Cms the campaign will continue ...regardless of who 'accepts agencies' as part of the landscape or association.

    Maza...2 years ago when the whole agency saga started I changed my paperwork to 'Ofsted Registered CM'...it took about 5 minutes to do so...the computer did the rest.

    Also Morton Michel are likely to be the ones providing paperwork for agencies and their cms...will they distinguish between 'registered' and 'not registered'?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    I hope I got this wrong ...but the message I am getting here is that 'as long as there is no agency on my doorstep''....everything is fine?
    I do think you have got it very wrong Simona, where I am concerned anyway.

    You asked if we were considering a name change in view of agencies being set up. My answer is no. The name is pretty irrelevant to parents and as there is no sign of any agency appearing, let alone any local childminders registering with them, there is not likely to be any issue at the moment. Why draw parents' attention to the fact that there is an alternative to an independent childminder? I will reconsider if agencies ever became a big player in my local area, but for now there are more important issues than changing my name.

    I certainly do not think that everything is OK just because there are no agencies on my doorstep. I will continue to make sure local childminders are signposted to the true facts about agencies and I will continue to promote independent childminding wherever and whenever I can. Personally, that is more important and effective than changing my name.

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  9. #8
    Simona Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
    I do think you have got it very wrong Simona, where I am concerned anyway.

    You asked if we were considering a name change in view of agencies being set up. My answer is no. The name is pretty irrelevant to parents and as there is no sign of any agency appearing, let alone any local childminders registering with them, there is not likely to be any issue at the moment. Why draw parents' attention to the fact that there is an alternative to an independent childminder? I will reconsider if agencies ever became a big player in my local area, but for now there are more important issues than changing my name.

    I certainly do not think that everything is OK just because there are no agencies on my doorstep. I will continue to make sure local childminders are signposted to the true facts about agencies and I will continue to promote independent childminding wherever and whenever I can. Personally, that is more important and effective than changing my name.
    Good to hear that Mouse

    Unless I am wrong parents are already drawn to the possibility of using an agency cm...what we need to wait and see is 'how' agencies will sell their cms against an Ofsted registered one.
    That info is very easily found by any parent who searches for a cm...will they know the difference?

    What I asked is 'what is in a title'

    I also asked if 'independent' is a true reflection of cms registered with Ofsted.
    I know we have called ourselves that but is it really appropriate considering we are dependant on Ofsted's regulation and LAs' conditions.

    There was no other hidden message other than opening up a discussion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post

    Unless I am wrong parents are already drawn to the possibility of using an agency cm...what we need to wait and see is 'how' agencies will sell their cms against an Ofsted registered one.
    That info is very easily found by any parent who searches for a cm...will they know the difference?

    .
    Again, I'm afraid I would have to disagree with that.

    As childminders who are very aware of agencies, we find it impossible to find any information on them, so I can't see parents having much more success. As things stand, I don't believe many parents are drawn to the possibility of using an agency childminder. How could they be when there is no information out there for them? I am not going to discuss agencies with any of my parents or prospective parents. They are currently unaware of them so I'm not going to be the one to give them any information.

    What I do agree with is that we need to be ready for the time when agencies are becoming established and registering enough childminders to be in a position to offer their services to parents. As soon as that look likes becoming a reality we need to act. Until then, let's do what the agencies do - keep our plans and strategies secret That time will be different for each of us depending what's happening in each locality. You are obviously further down that route than the rest of us (as you have an agency childminder near you), so need to take action earlier. The rest of us may look as if we're dragging our heals, but we'll be ready to act when the time is right for us. That doesn't mean I'm leaving you to do it alone. It means I'm not going to promote agencies in my area by being the one to bring them to parents' attention.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    I also asked if 'independent' is a true reflection of cms registered with Ofsted.
    I know we have called ourselves that but is it really appropriate considering we are dependant on Ofsted's regulation and LAs' conditions.

    .
    That's why I'll probably stick with "Ofsted Registered Childminder".

    That's the title most parents look for at the moment. If you think about it, if you were a parent looking for childcare (with no in depth knowledge of how it all works) you'd be looking for an Ofsted Registered Childminder. If Ofsted wasn't in the name, would parents be interested? Currently they know that to claim help with childcare costs, to access Early Education funding, to use childcare vouchers etc, they have to use Ofsted registered childcare. I would guess that most would do a google search for Ofsted registered childcare. Agency childminders would have to explain that they were registered with an agency, which in turn is registered with Ofsted. I bet many parents still won't be convinced.

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  14. #11
    Simona Guest

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    Thanks for your replies Mouse.

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    Thanks mouse .

    You've said what i would have said. One mum commented that my advert said 'independent' ofsted registered childminder and she just thought it meant i was independent like an independent school not a state school!

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    none in my area either -but wondered if you were not ofsted registered - could parents claim childcare tax credits?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyTinker View Post
    none in my area either -but wondered if you were not ofsted registered - could parents claim childcare tax credits?
    They could if the childminder was registered with an Ofsted registered agency.

  19. #15
    Simona Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by loocyloo View Post
    Thanks mouse .

    You've said what i would have said. One mum commented that my advert said 'independent' ofsted registered childminder and she just thought it meant i was independent like an independent school not a state school!
    That is a very good example of parents not really being very well informed despite the agency issue being really easy to get hold of information...if they needed it?
    I understand you live in a small village and your EY team is not that proactive?...did I get that right?

    Rather different if you live in a LA which has an excellent advertising power, gets incredible support from the powers that be and is facilitated to achieve all that.
    I would not underestimate parents 'misinformation' until that information becomes useful to them

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post

    That is a very good example of parents not really being very well informed despite the agency issue being really easy to get hold of information...if they needed it?
    I understand you live in a small village and your EY team is not that proactive?...did I get that right?

    Rather different if you live in a LA which has an excellent advertising power, gets incredible support from the powers that be and is facilitated to achieve all that.
    I would not underestimate parents 'misinformation' until that information becomes useful to them
    I agree that if your LA is 'on the ball' then it is different, but mine, although very supportive in the past, has had funding cuts and has all but removed all support to childminders. However, they are still running free/ nominal sum training courses and have fis etc. They did cost setting up as an agency and it was not viable, without charging childminders a large sum. We are a large, mainly rural county.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    That is a very good example of parents not really being very well informed despite the agency issue being really easy to get hold of information...if they needed it?
    I understand you live in a small village and your EY team is not that proactive?...did I get that right?

    Rather different if you live in a LA which has an excellent advertising power, gets incredible support from the powers that be and is facilitated to achieve all that.
    I would not underestimate parents 'misinformation' until that information becomes useful to them
    But if a parent was to google childminders agencies what information would they find?

    It wont be anything useful to their search what they are 6 agencies and 1 of them has a cm on their books at the minute.

    I think most childmnders are against agencies but at the minute we have shown what we think of them by refusing to join. If the next battle comes we will all be there to fight it BUT at the moment that battle doesn't seem to be close.
    When someone tells you nothing is impossible, tell them to go slam a revolving door

  22. #18
    Simona Guest

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    Thanks for clarifying that point Loocyloo...I knew it was a rural area but got the size wrong.

    Fussy...I think you may have misunderstood my point
    Maybe we have forgotten who is behind the agencies and given money by the DfE to 'promote' them?

  23. #19
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    Hi

    Im happy to continue to be known as an Ofsted Registered Childminder

 

 

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