In the UK there many laws relating to the welfare of Children but the ones which are most relevant to home based child care are the following:
The Children Act (1989)
This is the first acknowledgement in UK law of Childrens’ Rights and is where the phrase “the needs of the child are paramount”
The Children Act (2004) followed this and arose from the green paper “Every Child Matters”. It identifies five outcomes stating that every child should
* Be healthy * Stay safe * Enjoy and achieve * Make a positive contribution * Achieve economic well-being
As a childminding professional I endeavour to fulfil these outcomes to the best of my ability.
Another law related to children is the Childcare Act (2006). This introduced the Early Foundation Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) which is the statutory framework that sets the standards for learning, development and care that all children should encounter when in settings outside the family home.
The Protection of Children Act (1998) requires a list to be kept of any person considered to be unsuitable to work with children. All persons over the age of 16 who work with children, who live in a childcare setting or will spend any period of time in the same vicinity of children in the childcare setting are required to outgo a CRB check to ensure they are not on this list.
Another important law is the Special Needs and Disability Act (2001), this act protects children from any discrimination on the basis of disability and ensures settings make reasonable adjustments to meet the needs and rights of the child.
All home based child carers are regulated by Ofsted which is the Office for Standards in Education in the UK. Every home based child carer needs to meet certain criteria and pass certain courses and qualifications before they can even apply for registration as a home based child carer. They also need to have