After you apply
When you submit your application Ofsted will:
- do background checks with local authorities
- check your references
- give you a reference number to use if you have questions about your application
If you’re a childminder
An inspector will visit you to check:
- your identity and qualifications - including first aid qualifications
- your house and garden are safe for children
- that you’re familiar with the early years foundation stage (EYFS) requirements and know how to put them into practice
- your level of English
You will not usually get a registration visit if you’re only looking after children aged over 5.
Find out how to prepare for your registration visit.
If your application is approved
You’ll get a certificate of registration if your application is approved. You will need this to start work as a childminder.
Ofsted will publish your unique reference number (‘URN’) and inspection reports online. If you’re a childminder they will also publish your name and address - unless you tell them not to.
If your application is refused
Ofsted will send you a letter called a ‘notice of intention’ which will tell you why you’ve been turned down.
You’ll be disqualified from applying again in future.
Object to a decision
You can object to a decision if you’ve been sent a ‘notice of intention’.
You must object within 14 days of the date on the notice.
Ofsted will consider your objection, then tell you if:
- you’re still refused registration
- you cannot look after children in a particular home
- your decision is overturned
If you do not object, or Ofsted does not change its decision, you’ll get a second letter called a ‘notice of decision’. This is the final decision to refuse registration or approval of a certain premises.
Appeal a decision
If you disagree with Ofsted’s final decision, you can appeal to an independent tribunal.
You must appeal within 3 months of the date that you’re sent the notice of decision.