Looking For Childcare
TYPES OF CHILDCARE
To help you find the most appropriate childcare setting to meet your family’s needs, detailed below are the different types of Ofsted registered childcare available in Halton, along with a brief description of the type of service they offer.
DAY NURSERIES (0-5 YEAR OLDS)
Day Nurseries provide full day care and early learning for children aged from birth to 5 years old. Opening hours are usually weekdays, 8am-6pm, although some may be open longer. Children can attend full or part-time, and many day nurseries offer term-time only places as well as all year round. All Day Nurseries in Halton offer the Free Early Years Entitlement for 2, 3 and 4 year olds.
PRE-SCHOOLS (2-5 YEAR OLDS)
Pre-schools provide part-time care and early learning for children aged 2 years to 5 years.
Pre-Schools are open for both morning and afternoon sessions during term-time only. They operate in line with school hours (generally 9am – 3pm but individual times vary).
A number of pre-schools in Halton also offer a lunch club, which enables parents to use their
Free Early Years Entitlement for part of the day and pay for any additional hours. This also means that parents who are eligible for 30 hours can access this at a pre-school.
CHILDMINDERS (USUALLY BIRTH TO THE END OF PRIMARY SCHOOL)
Childminders work in their own home, and can care for up to six children under 8 years of age. This includes their own children. They can also care for a number of children over the age of 8. Some childminders work together, or work with an assistant, which means that they can offer care for more children.
Childminders in Halton offer a flexible service to suit parents’ needs, and are able to offer early starts and late finishes. Most provide a breakfast, after school and / or holiday care service.
Opening hours for Halton childminders generally range between 8am-6pm, however, many start as early as 6am and work until 8pm each day.
Some childminders in Halton offer weekend, bank holiday and overnight care as and when required.
MAINTAINED NURSERY SCHOOLS AND CLASSES
Maintained Nursery Schools and Nursery Classes operate in line with school hours (generally 9am – 3pm but individual times vary) and term-time only. They offer places to children from the start of the term following their 3rd birthday, until they are ready to start school. They can offer either 15 or 30 hours, in line with the
Free Early Years Entitlement. Each school currently manages their own admissions; therefore, you will need to contact the school directly to enquire about a place.
OUT OF SCHOOL CLUBS (4-11 YEAR OLDS, GENERALLY, BUT MAY TAKE OLDER)
Out of School Clubs are often based on school premises but can also be based in other buildings, and may include the following services: Breakfast, after school and holiday clubs.
The Families Information Service / Directory can provide information about which Out of School Clubs drop off and pick up from which schools.
For further information about any of the above, or to discuss your individual childcare needs, please contact the Families Information Service who can offer free, impartial advice.
FINDING CHILDCARE FOR A CHILD WITH ADDITIONAL NEEDS OR A DISABILITY
All Halton childcare providers have an Inclusion Policy that details the level of care they offer to meet the needs of all children. The Families Information Service can offer a brokerage service to help find childcare to meet your child’s needs. Check the Local Authority’s Local Offer for more information.