OFSTED inspections for nannies
Towards the end of the year a lot of nannies get calls from OFSTED informing them that it’s time for an inspection. Around 10% of nannies on the voluntary register are inspected every year, and most pass with flying colours, however it can be a nerve-wracking experience particularly if you’ve worked in a nursery.
Purpose: Unlike school and early years settings (nurseries, childminders, etc), OFSTED inspections for nannies are not to judge your skills as a childcarer or evaluate the way you implement the EYFS. It is purely to see whether you meet the requirements of the register as they apply to you. Your inspector should send you a document which lays out the requirements for both parts of the childcare register. You are only concerned with ‘both’ or ‘voluntary’ AND where it mentions ‘home childcarer’ (which is what OFSTED call nannies).
Place: The inspector doesn’t have to come to your workplace. They would need authorisation from your employers to do that in any case. You can meet them in Starbucks, Burger King or your own home. They don’t need to see you with your charges either.
Preparation: You should find the certificates of attendance/qualifications that show you have completed Common Core Skills training or a childcare qualification at level 2 or above, your Paediatric First Aid certificate, your insurance certificate and your DBS. Your inspector may ask to see proof of ID and proof of address to make sure that the details all match up and some ask to see contracts of employment, but they can only insist on seeing contracts for families who use vouchers to pay you. Families who don’t use vouchers are nothing to do with OFSTED. As well as the paperwork you should run through answers to questions about how you discipline your charges (the register forbids the use of corporal punishment), what the different types of abuse are and how you would report abuse. If in doubt say you would contact the NSPCC – they can intervene nationally – but you should also know the procedures for your Local Safeguarding Board.
To help you in your preparation you may also want to download the free BAPN Guide for nannies.
Once your inspection is done you should receive a letter saying you’ve met all the requirements. If for some reason you didn’t (because your First Aid certificate was out of date or you couldn’t answer the questions, for example) you will get a letter with ‘Actions’ saying what you need to do and a deadline to complete the action by.