Guidance

Report a serious childcare incident

Ofsted-registered childminders, nannies, nurseries and other daycare must use this service to report significant events affecting their childcare within 14 days.

Ofsted can take action against you if you do not tell us about these incidents within 14 days.

The day of the incident is the first of these 14 days.

What you must tell Ofsted

You must inform us about:

  • the death of a child
  • where a person’s suitability to look after children might be affected, including:
    • involvement with social services or the police
    • something significant affecting their health
  • events that might affect the smooth running of the childcare, such as a fire or flooding at the premises
  • serious accidents, injuries or illnesses to a child
  • food poisoning affecting 2 or more children

More information is available on what Ofsted sees as a serious accident, injury or illness that you must report.

You must also tell Ofsted about any allegations of serious harm or abuse anywhere by any person at the premises who is:

  • living there
  • working there
  • looking after children there

What you do not need to tell Ofsted

You do not need to tell us about:

  • minor injuries
  • general hospital appointments
  • routine treatments by a doctor

Minor injuries include:

  • sprains, strains and bruising
  • cuts and grazes
  • wound infections
  • insect and animal bites

More information is available on what Ofsted sees as a minor injury.

You do not need to tell us about closing your childcare in the short term.

How to tell Ofsted

You will fulfil your legal requirements if you submit the online report within 14 days. It will take about 10 to 20 minutes to complete.

Report online

To complete this, you’ll need to have:

  • your reference number
  • the childcare address
  • details of the incident and those involved

After you give us information

Ofsted may:

  • review our provider information portal
  • look for records of previous serious incidents and how we assessed risk
  • talk to you about it at your next inspection
  • contact you to discuss the incident
  • carry out an inspection or visit

Local authorities and members of the public making reports

There is separate guidance for local authorities or members of the public who want to report incidents.

Local authorities should tell the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel about incidents.

Concerned members of the public have a different process to report child abuse.

Published 19 February 2020