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Job profile! Childcare providers & nannies: professionalize childcare

TV formats such as the “Super-Nanny” show that there is widespread interest in the subject of child rearing and childcare in Germany. How does that look job profile and starting a business as a childminder?

The Bad Mother Discussion - a German Problem?

In Germany, in contrast to other countries, it is particularly controversial whether children should be raised exclusively by their own mother, or whether they cannot be looked after by a childminder or a trained specialist, at least temporarily.

A recent survey by the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) also showed that mothers who work full-time are generally more satisfied. According to the institute, 39 percent of all mothers with children under the age of 14 are not gainfully employed. Around 58 percent of them would like to go to work, but cannot for family reasons.

A huge market that is opening up to entrepreneurs who want to earn a living with childcare. Because good and adequate childcare is actually in short supply in Germany. Many parents are looking for a place for their child in Germany. Long waiting lists are the order of the day. In the meantime, she is also working Politics trying to close the huge gap in supply, especially for children under three years of age - but you will hardly be able to create new crèche places in a hurry. The solution for many mothers is therefore: childminder.

Becoming a childminder: what is important?

The German Children and Youth Report shows: In Germany 140000 children up to the age of six are looked after by child minders, sometimes also by child minders. The way in which childcare is implemented varies: there is care by a nanny who works in the parents' household, there is the childminder who looks after one or more children in her own apartment and there is the so-called day care, in which up to eight children are looked after in rented rooms. Often the care is organized and financed by the parents. There is also the public, legally regulated day care, which the youth welfare office arranges and supports financially.

However, looking after a child as a childminder means more than just watching the little ones play and putting them to bed at noon. Rather, the children also need family affection and, in the event of grief, consolation, a lot of attention and variety - for example in the form of new games or excursions. The daily routine should be tailored to the children. And in the event of illness or vacation, a good childminder will also organize a replacement - for this she must be well networked with colleagues.

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The important thing is that there is no pattern F in this work. Every child is different and you have to look carefully at what one child needs and what the other. For example, if a child has language problems, you have to talk to them a lot. But you shouldn't press the children, rather a childminder must always adjust to their needs. Therefore, you should definitely not take in more children than you can handle - a number above five is considered critical and even those with a certain work experience.

Childcare as a business idea?

For a long time, day care was often still viewed as a kind of additional activity. That also applies to them Payment: According to the German Youth Institute in Munich, a childminder with four full-time foster children usually only comes to 900 euros a month after deducting all expenses. Only gradually, thanks to the growing demand, is the image changing; In Denmark, Sweden and Finland, on the other hand, childminder has long been a real job with fair conditions and a corresponding salary. In Germany, too, efforts are now moving in the direction of greater professionalization.

That childcare is a good one Business idea shows someone, of all people, who has nothing to do with pedagogy through his training: his Concept ABC School Joke Oud Children's centers Kunterbunt eV, lawyer Björn Czinzoll offers working parents flexible care: The children's centers are open Monday to Saturday from 7 a.m. to 19 p.m., have an extensive additional service, and are always created in cooperation with and near Company and are still public - which means that public funding can flow in and companies can be offered the socially innovative care service free of charge. Over 100 new children's centers are to be opened nationwide in the next few years. In 2006 the idea was awarded the “Social Entrepreneur” prize.

Prerequisites, education and training

There are currently neither uniform standards for supervisors nor binding aptitude tests. That means: if you want to work as a childminder, you can theoretically start right away. In some cities, a police clearance certificate is sufficient as a qualification to be ordered by the youth welfare office.

In practice it makes sense, of course, because you already have sufficient experience in dealing with children, e.g. because you have some yourself, that you have a pedagogical training or come from a related professional field, e.g. from child care or the social sector.

Further education or studies?

The German Youth Institute has also developed a further education curriculum that comprises 160 hours. Those who want to complete it have to go through modules such as “Supporting children” and “Observing and perceiving the development of children”. The Federal Association for Child Day Care awards certificates for successful completion. The time required for this varies depending on the federal state: Sometimes it is 15 hours, sometimes 60 hours. The association also arranges child minders and ensures professional exchange.

In addition, there have been various courses in the field for several years Early childhood education also for budding day care workers - such as the Bachelor of Arts in Childhood Education at the Alice Salomon University of Applied Sciences in Berlin, the Bachelor's degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education at the Heidelberg University of Education or the Bachelor of Childhood Education at the University of Erfurt. Almost all of these are two- or three-year training courses at educational or church colleges and universities of applied sciences. You can find an overview of the offer here:

The job description will probably become even more professional in the coming years: The introduction of standardized tests and quality seals, features that enable parents to recognize a good foster home, are considered likely. Finland is the model here. Here, prospective childminders have to complete a 250-hour course including an exam.

Formalities at the start-up in brief

As a childminder, you are a freelancer. This means that you only need a tax number from the tax office. A business registration is not required. According to Section 43 of Book 8 of the Social Code - Children and Youth Welfare, a permit is required for activities in child day care.

The German Pension Insurance also classifies your work as a childminder as an educational activity and therefore assumes that teachers, educators, carers, etc., have priority insurance in accordance with Section 2 of Book VI of the Social Code. The decisive factor is how the profession is carried out and not what the job title is.

How big are the career opportunities?

Although there is a comparatively large market in which many parents are looking for suitable childcare offers, at the same time there has been a veritable run among female entrepreneurs in recent years to become self-employed as child minders. The reason for this are TV formats such as the Super-Nanny, which mainly gave women the idea.

But not everyone is suitable for this profession: A study in Brandenburg showed that every seventh day care center has good to very good educational quality and every seventh also has an inadequate quality. Two thirds were mediocre. In the east, the training of child minders is usually better than in the west, many of them have a qualification as kindergarten teachers there. Anyone who wants to work successfully as a childminder should therefore be able to demonstrate appropriate qualifications.

Of course, ordering through the youth welfare office offers good opportunities, but there is another way: Anyone who sees themselves as a service provider and offers their parents a flexible care relationship tailored to their needs can survive in the increasingly professional market independently of the youth welfare office.

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2 responses to “job profile! Childminder & Nanny: professionalize childcare ”

  1. Sophie says:

    Hi Simone, great contribution! I think the topic of childcare is getting bigger and bigger. Why am I a bad mother when I want to go back to work. I think both variants are okay and everyone should be able to decide for themselves. Find the aspect of childcare as a business idea super exciting. It was certainly an important point during Corona. I just read an article last that the loss of earnings should be increased when the children are sick. Maybe you are also interested?

    • Simone Janson says:

      Hello Sophia, thanks for the hint, please send one eMail with the link.

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