Drive to meet demand for new childminders across Perth and Kinross
Childminders are an essential part of the childcare provision that lots of families rely on. They offer care for small groups of children in a home environment with the flexibility and choice that is valued by parents.
Councillor Caroline Shiers, Convener of Perth & Kinross Council's Lifelong Learning Committee, is very aware of the opportunities being a childminder offers and is keen to encourage people to get involved, commenting:
"If you love children and want to help give them the best start in life, being a registered childminder could be the ideal job for you. Childminding offers fantastic career opportunities - from making a difference to a child's life, to being your own boss and working from home.
"Childminders offer a professional childcare service, looking after small groups of children of different ages and from different families and are perfectly placed to support the development of youngsters by working closely with parents to provide bespoke childcare."
Childminders are private businesses so are responsible for deciding how much they will charge for their service. The current average rate across Perth & Kinross is £4.13 per child per hour, though rates vary between £3 and £5. Most childminders can have up to six children in their care at any time including their own children, three of whom can be under school age.
To help extend the number of childminders available, Perth & Kinross Council is continuing to run free introductory sessions and pre-registration training courses for local people who are considering becoming a childminder. Start-up grants, additional training and ongoing support are also offered.
The next introductory sessions are being held on Thursday 8 March, with morning and evening options. A two day pre-registration course will follow later in the month; a crèche will be provided for the morning introductory session as well as throughout the course if required.
The comprehensive course gives candidates a realistic insight into what life would be like as a childminder and provides help, support and the skills to move forward through the registration process.
We are particularly keen to hear from people living in villages around Perth who might be interested in becoming a childminder as well as those resident in Kinross-shire, around the Crieff and Auchterarder areas or in Highland Perthshire.