The Early Years team works to support people to become childminders in Reading.

To work as a childminder with children from birth to five in Reading you must also:

  • Attend a briefing session (see below)
  • Complete a relevant training course such as Introduction to Childminding Practice
  • Attend an approved 12 hour paediatric first aid and 3 hour universal safeguarding training course

What you need to know

To become a childminder you must:

  • Enjoy being with children and have patience and warmth
  • Gain an understanding of child development; follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Framework. These are standards you must meet for the development and care of children up to age five
  • Be able to support children with specific needs, such as food allergies, asthma or speech delay
  • Be able to keep records, for example, records of a child’s learning
  • Know how to keep your own accounts and pay your income tax

Not everyone can become a childminder or childcarer. Some things can disqualify you from registering as a childminder or childcarer:

  • If you’ve been barred from working with children
  • If you live in the same home as someone who is disqualified
  • If you’ve been refused registration in the past.

To register as a childminder you must attend a childminder pre-registration briefing. We offer regular briefing sessions (free to Reading Borough Council residents and £20 to others).

Our childminder briefing session takes about two hours and must be paid for at least one week before the session.

At the childminder briefing session you’ll learn about:

  • if childminding would suit you and your family
  • how you can become a registered childminder
  • the Introduction to Childminding Practice course
  • other childcare options such as becoming a registered nanny or after-school childminder.

Click here to book on a childminder briefing session.

The next briefing dates are:


  • Friday 2 February, 10-11.30am
  • Monday 4 March, 1-2.30pm
  • Wednesday 3 April, 6-7.30pm
  • Friday 3 May, 10-11.30am
  • Monday 3 June, 1-2.30pm
  • Friday 5 July, 10-11.30am
  • Wednesday 7 August, 1-2.30pm
  • Thursday 5 September 6-7.30pm
  • Monday 7 October 10-11.30am
  • Friday 1 November 10-11.30am
  • Monday 2 December 1-2.30pm

Introduction to Childminding Practice

Course cost: £150 for Reading Borough Council residents (£200 for others).

This introductory course is currently being delivered virtually, both sessions must be attended. There are no assignments, only what you need to prepare for your registration visit from Ofsted.

This course prepares learners in setting up and establishing a childminding business and is run by qualified tutors experienced in childminding and early years practice.

Subjects covered:

  • Early Years Foundation Stage
  • Being healthy and staying safe
  • Learning environment
  • Inclusion
  • Behaviour
  • The business side of childminding

Childminder Introductory Training

The next childminder introductory course will be delivered on 13, 20 and 27 September 2024, 9.30am-1.30pm (all sessions must be attended) held at South Reading Community Hub, Northumberland Road RG2 7QA.

Click here to book on an introductory course.

Read the training cancellation policy here.

Contact: or 0118 937 6896.

You should take into consideration the time it will take to complete the mandatory training and preparation work required before you are able to start working as a childminder.

It is not practical for babies or children to attend these sessions.

For safeguarding information click here to go to the Berkshire West Safeguarding Children Partnership website.

For information on the Early Years Foundation Stage click here.

Click here to go to the Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years (PACEY) website.

To register as a childminder you will need to complete the Ofsted application process.

Registering usually takes up to:

  • 12 weeks for childminders and home childcarers
  • 25 weeks for a childcare provider on domestic or non-domestic premises.

Further information can be found here.

From September 2023, a £600 start-up grant is available for those who register with Ofsted. This grant can be back-claimed for those who registered on or after 15 March 2023. Find out more here: childminder grants scheme.

Childminders in Reading are offered support and information from the Early Years Team to help them meet regulatory requirements.  

Childminders in Reading can also join our Childminder Partnership to receive enhanced support to raise the standards of their provision.  

Childminder Partnership is FREE until your first Ofsted inspection and includes:  

  • Termly advisory support in your own home – with help around policies and procedures, signposting to local informationand support with  inspection preparation
  • Regular childminder networks
  • Wide range of training
  • Business advice  – funded spaces available, local childcare market, support with advertising and help managing risk and change
  • Telephone support
  • Dedicated email contact  

Contact us  


This is a chance to meet, chat and discuss topical items of interest with your peers and early years advisors. These meetings ensure that you are kept up to date with any legislative  changes and Ofsted requirements that may have an impact on your practise. A portion of the meeting is used to provide CPD.

Attendance at these meetings can be counted as part of your professional development and evidence towards the Leadership and Management aspect of Ofsted inspections.

  • Funding calendar
  • Funding FAQ
  • GDPR
  • Language monitoring tool
  • Newsletter
  • Partnership agreement
  • Policies
  • Portal guidance
  • Providers agreement
  • Parental agreements
  • Trackers

The Childminder Start-up Grant Scheme is now open for applications via the below link. The scheme will support new childminders by providing grant funding to help with the cost of setting up their own businesses.

Guidance on applying for a start-up grant

The scheme will be available to all new childminders who have completed their registration on or after 15 March 2023. Individuals who have previously been registered as childminders and wish to re-register into the sector may also apply for the scheme. There must be at least a 12-month gap between the date of their previous registration being cancelled and their new registration being finalised.

See also the key documents below:


Eligibility Criteria

Application process

Applicant guidance

Be part of something BIG

For more information about early years careers, visit the government’s Early Years Careers website.

Useful links

Berkshire West Safeguarding Children Partnership

Go to website

Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework

Go to website

Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years (PACEY)

Go to website