Families Information Service

menu

Choosing Childcare

This factsheet looks at the different types of childcare and what they can offer you and your child. It introduces the different options and will hopefully help you to decide which type of childcare best meets your family’s needs.  If you would like to talk to someone to find out more about the different types of childcare available or to find out the contact details for childcare providers in Rotherham give us a call on freephone 0800 0730230.

Childminders

Childminders look after your child along with other children, usually in the Childminder’s own home. They are registered and inspected by Ofsted. 

Childminders are self-employed and so can be flexible about the hours they work.  Some Childminders will work early mornings, evenings, weekends and offer overnight care.

Many Childminders offer before and after school and holiday care as well as full day care. Childminders often drop off or collect your child from their school, or take your child to pre-school or nursery class.

Some Childminders are registered to provide free early education places for 3 and 4 year olds.

Day nurseries

Day nurseries (full day care) provide care for children from birth to five years and are registered and inspected by Ofsted. Day nurseries operate from non-domestic premises, including Children’s Centres, and normally open between 8am and 6pm. 

They usually offer part or full-time places and children can be grouped by age and stage of development. Some nurseries may also offer before/after school and holiday care for children of school age.

Most Day Nurseries are registered to provide free early education places for 3 and 4 year olds.

Pre-School playgroups

Pre-schools or playgroups offer care for children between two and five years are usually registered and inspected by Ofsted. 

The sessions are normally for two to three hours in the morning and/or the afternoon and some Pre-Schools offer ‘wraparound care’ making the sessions longer or joining the sessions together. 

Most Pre-Schools are registered to provide free early education places for 3 and 4 year olds.

Out of school clubs

Out of School Clubs are usually for school age children, but some offer care to children from aged three.  They are usually registered by Ofsted but there are some exceptions such as those that offer care for over 8’s only, contact us if you are unsure and we can let you know if they should be registered or not.

They offer care before and/or after school and drop off and/or collect your child from school.  Some also have holiday clubs offering full day care through the school holidays. 

Nannies and home based childcare

Nannies or home based childcarers are employed by you to look after your child in your home.  They do not have to register with Ofsted, however, they can register on the Ofsted Voluntary Register (see FIS Guide to Ofsted).

We can give you contact details for local childcare providers that meet your needs or talk about your options to help you decide which type of childcare you would like to use.  You can contact us with any questions you have about childcare on freephone 0800 0730230 or email fis@rotherham.gov.uk

What are my childcare options?

Find out more about the different types of childcare available.

What are my childcare options? (176.5K, .PDF)

Visiting childcare settings

Tips on what to look for and what to ask when visiting childcare settings

Visiting childcare settings (170.6K, .PDF)

My FIS

This part of the website is for you to make your own.

You can save your favourite activities so that they are only a click away or create a shortlist of childcare providers to help you compare and choose the one that suits really.

All you need to do is register below.

Create your account

Forgotten your password?