Top Childminder Facts

Childminders – What you need to know


What is a Childminder?


A childminder is a person who singlehandedly minds children in his/her own home.


What is a HSE notified Childminding Service?


The HSE describe a ‘childminding’ service in the Child Care (Pre-School Services) (No 2) Regulations 2006 as a preschool service, which may include an overnight service, offered by a person who single-handedly takes care of pre-school children, including the childminder’s own children, in the childminder’s home for a total of more than 2 hours per day, expect where the exemptions provided in Section 58 of the Child Care Act 1991 apply.


What is a HSE notified Childminder?


A HSE notified childminder is a childminder who is required to notify the HSE of their childminding service.


How many children can a Childminder take care of?


A childminder (a person who provides a childminding service) should look after not more than 5 pre-school children including his/her own pre-school children.


No more than two children should be less than 15 months. Exceptions can be made if the children under 15 months are the result of multiple births e.g. triplets or if the children under 15 months are siblings.


What you might ask a potential childminder


Many parents like the personal care offered by a childminder, whether in their home with a handful of other children, or minded in your own house.


Childminders can and do get ill, which means you could get a phone call some morning telling you that they are not well. If a childminder comes to your home, most will happily care for a sick child as part of their job, which means no interruption to your work schedule.

The guidelines for hiring a childminder are the same whether you plan to drop off your child in their house or expect them to come to your home.


View the Childminders home.


You want to find a friendly, organised, trustworthy individual that your child will feel content and secure with. Parents move on from childminders all the time (changing job, starting maternity leave, child starting school, etc), which means there’s often an experienced childminder out there looking for a new job and at you’re sure to find the right one

Make a shortlist of local minders and arrange to meet them.

If a childminder will be looking after your child in their home, ask to visit when they are minding children. This will give you a good sense of how they interact with the kids and whether the other children seem happy and relaxed. Also look at their hygiene and security. Finding the right childminder is key to your child’s wellbeing so don’t be shy about asking questions. Ask about qualifications, such as first aid and childcare studies, or they Tusla registered and what motivated them to become a childminder.

A good childminder will have a routine that encompasses lots of varied activities. Find out what a typical day is. Establish how they manage holidays.

Before hiring a childminder, watch how they interact with your child. If you’re happy then follow up on references and registration

Essential questions:


Are you registered?

Can I see the playroom; sleep room and outdoor play space?

Are you fully insured to mind children, both in the home and on outings?



What would you do in an emergency involving yourself or one of the children?


Are you Garda vetted? (It’s free and a legal requirement for those minding four or more.)


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