How to register your au pair with Ofsted

A number of our host families have enquired about registering their au pair with Ofsted in order to make use of childcare vouchers.

There are many different stages to Ofsted registration and it can be a fairly lengthy process (usually 12-14 weeks). Please note that the process cannot begin until your au pair has arrived in the UK.

break for fruits

Current guidance on the subject from the British Au Pair Agencies Association (BAPAA) is as follows:

  • The au pair or nanny should call Ofsted and tell them that they want to become registered under the voluntary Ofsted registration scheme for home-based childcare.
  • Ofsted will send out a form in the post to be filled in.
  • The form must be returned with a valid Paediatric First Aid Certificate (further information below).
  • Ofsted will carry out a police check (even if the au pair already has a CRB).
  • If the person has lived in the UK for less than 5 years, then he/she will have to get a ‘good conduct letter/ certificate’ from his/her embassy which needs to be written in English or translated into English by an authorised translator. This depends on the country of origin of the au pair or nanny, so check with Ofsted first. Ofsted confirm that it is also acceptable for the au pair or nanny to get a police check from their country of origin and send it to Ofsted, but it must be an official document, on letter-headed paper, stamped and translated into English by an authorised translator.
  • Ofsted will then send through another form (called a verify form) that must be taken to the post office, together with a form of ID (eg passport) so that their identity can be checked.
  • The application fee, currently £103, must be paid.
  • Annually, on the anniversary of the registration with Ofsted, the fee becomes payable again, as long as the au pair wants to remain Ofsted-registered.
  • The au pair also needs a childcare (or similar) qualification from their home country, or from the UK, which is equivalent to level 2, or they must enrol on a Common Core Skills and Knowledge course (further information below).
  • The au pair is also required to have personal public liability insurance, most households have an insurance which would not cover the au pair if she has an accident so she would need to acquire on of her own.

Smartaupairs recommends Babyem’s Ofsted compliant courses:

Common Core Skills and Knowledge Training

http://babyem.co.uk/common-core-skills-knowledge-training/

The common core skills course is accredited at level 3 through Open College Network, providing au pairs registering with Ofsted with an official childcare qualification and covers the 6 common core skills areas required by Ofsted.

These areas are:

  • Communicating with children, young people, their parents and carers
  • Child and young person development
  • Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the child
  • Supporting transitions
  • Multi-agency working
  • Sharing information

Ofsted compliant Paediatric First Aid

http://babyem.co.uk/paediatric-first-aid/

The paediatric first aid course covers all the necessary requirements for registration with Ofsted. Course content is as follows:

  • Planning for first aid
  • Dealing with Emergencies
  • Resuscitation of babies and children
  • Recognising and dealing with shock
  • Anaphylactic shock/Electric Shock
  • Bleeding, burns and scalds
  • Choking
  • Fractures
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Childcare Vouchers/Tax Credits

Tax credits are payments from the government. If you’re responsible for at least one child or young person who normally lives with you, you may qualify for Child Tax Credit. (HMRC)

Family eligibility for tax credit depends on factors such as age, employment status, number of children, disabilities & other benefits claimed.  In general, the family needs to earn less than £58 000 combined/year to qualify.

Some employers also give out childcare vouchers.

For a family to be able to gain the tax credits or childcare vouchers, they have to employ a registered carer. The governing body in the UK is Ofsted and the au pair must register with them on a voluntary, home based childcare scheme.

The number for tax credits is 08453 003900, or for more information, please see: www.hmrc.gov.uk/taxcredits

Guide for Families:

  1. Contact Ofsted – ask for your au pair to be registered under the voluntary Ofsted scheme.
  2. Complete the form sent to you by Ofsted and return it with a valid first aid certificate(1)
  3. Ofsted will conduct a police check/CRB on the person – even if the au pair already has a valid CRB. If the person has lived in the UK for less than 5 years, which is the case with most au pairs, she or he would be required to acquire a good conduct letter/certificate from the embassy (in English or translated in English by an authorized translator).
  4. Ofsted will thereafter send you another form (verify form) which you would take to the post office (together with an ID to check your identity).
  5. Payment of the application fee – £103 – the fee becomes repayable annually as long as the person wishes to be registered.
  6. The au pair is also required to have a childcare qualification from their home country or from the UK which is equivalent to the level 2 or they have to enrol on a Common Core Skills and Knowledge Course (2) by contacting their local authority. For more information, please call Children Work Force Development Council on 01132 446 311 or on 0300 123 1033
  7. The au pair is also required to have personal public liability insurance, most households have an insurance which would not cover the au pair if she has an accident so she would need to acquire on of her own.
  8. The duration of the registration process is between 12 and 14 weeks (6-8 weeks to receive the CRB check).

(1)First Aid Course

 

The certificate must be for a paediatric first aid course – which can be either a 6 or 12 hour course. The family is required to make sure the course is suitable for the Ofsted Voluntary childcare scheme.

 

(2)Common Core Skills and Knowledge Course

 

If your local authority does not offer the course then you may contact a training organizer. One provider is MNT Training who runs two Common Core Skills and Knowledge courses. First being a 2 day course in London (costing £150/run monthly). You will receive a certificate and may have an assessment (but this is not required by Ofsted). Second course is a distant learning course for people who are unable to attend in London. The course cost is £150 and at the end of the course an assessment is conducted for proof of completed studies.

Information gathered by Sara Rahmani/Monica from Peek a Boo Childcare