Childminding Registration Guidance

Become a Childminder

How do I become a childminder?

  1. To operate a Childminding service in your own home, you must, by law, be registered with the Health & Social Care Trust. As a first step contact your local Early Years Team for an enquiry form which you must complete and return.
  2. Prior to applying for registration, carry out some local research to see if there is a demand for new childminding places in your area. Useful sources of information include websites such as NICMA - the Childminding Association, www.nicma.org, or the government website www.familysupportni.gov.uk.  
    The Early Years Teams maintain a list of all Registered Childminders and may be able to provide some information regarding supply and demand.
  3. We recommend that you DO NOT give up a current job until you are sure that childminding is a viable option for you and your family.
  4. You will be required to attend a two hour pre-registration briefing session where the registration and inspection process will be explained and you will have the opportunity to ask questions about every aspect of working as a Registered Childminder. The aim of the briefing session is to help you make a fully informed choice as to whether or not Registered Childminding is right for you.
  5. After this session, if you wish to proceed, you must complete an application pack. Make sure that you complete all the forms correctly and that all documents requested are provided as soon as possible. Any delays on your part will delay the registration process.
  6. Access NI applications must be made online. Go to www.nidirect.gov.uk/accessni Queries should be addressed to the Early Years Team. 
  7. When you have completed the application pack, contact your Early Years Team and arrange an appointment for you and any relevant family members to have your ID(s) verified in person. Give the Early Years Team your 10 digit Access NI reference number.
  8. Once you have done this the Minimum Standards for Childminding and Day Care require you to attend relevant training to provide you with knowledge and information about Health & Safety, Safeguarding Children and an Introduction to Paediatric First Aid. This training is compulsory for anyone wishing to register as a childminder.
You may find it helpful to download a copy of the Minimum Standards which is available on the 
NICMA website via the link above and also the Implementation Guidance Version 3
 
Your local Early Years Team is your first point of contact for any query concerning your registration. However NICMA also have a team of Childminding Development Officers in every Trust area who will be glad to provide support and advice regarding the benefits of NICMA membership – contracts, setting up and promoting your business, insurance etc.
Contact details are below:
NICMA Childminding Development Officers
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Do Remember…

  • It is your responsibility to ensure that your registration is proceeding
  • Contact your Early Years Team for advice if you are unsure of how to progress

Childminding Registration Checklist

Use the table below to record your progress.

Print IconPrint Checklist

Step to RegistrationDate Completed
Initial enquiry to Early Years Social Work Team (EY Team) 
Enquiry form returned to EY Team 
Pre-Registration Briefing Session attended 
Application pack from EY Team received 
Application pack completed and returned to EY Team 
ID checks verified 
Core Training attended:
  • Health & Safety
  • Safeguarding Children
  • Paediatric First Aid - initial 3 hour session
 
Social Worker allocated 
1st Assessment visit 
2nd Assessment visit 
Registration process completed 
NICMA Membership package (to include insurance) purchased 
Registered with Environmental Health 
Registered with HMRC 
 Paediatric First Aid – full 12 hours to be completed within first year of registration 

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