Knowledge Hub

Get the latest updates on topics affecting Wales' childcare sector.

Business Wales Childcare Grant

The Grant is open to childcare providers operating as private and commercial enterprises, social enterprises and those operating in voluntary sector settings.  The purpose of the Grant is to encourage the creation of new childcare places and new places for children with additional or special needs to support the Welsh Government’s 30 Hour Childcare Offer.

The Grant can be considered for areas not in Early Implementer Local Authority areas of the Offer where there is a genuine need for additional childcare capacity.

 There are to levels of Grant funding:   

  • Level 1: Funding (to the value £500) is available for individuals wishing to start a new childcare business or wishing to increase their number of childcare places
  • Level 2: Funding (to the value of £1,000) is also available for childcare settings which support children with special or additional needs.

To access the Childcare Grant, all applicants and their businesses must be registered with Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) and Business Wales.

For further details on registering with Business Wales and the grant guidance, criteria and application form please speak with your local Business Wales team or call their helpline on 03000 6 03000.

View the Childcare Grant Q&A below.

Childcare Grant Q&A
(Adobe PDF File)

New process for DBS checks for Registered Person and Responsible Individual

Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) no longer provide paper DBS application forms - therefore you must use the online service to have a DBS check.

If you are registering for the first time or are already registered but need to renew your DBS check and are eligible, you must apply and follow the new process.

Read more here - and don't forget that as an NDNA member you can get discounted DBS checks at www.ndna.org.uk/ucheck.

 

New curriculum for Wales

A new curriculum is being developed in Wales. It will be phased in from September 2022, starting with nursery through to year seven, and will have six "areas of learning and experience":

  • Expressive arts
  • Health and well-being
  • Humanities (including RE which should remain compulsory to age 16)
  • Languages, literacy and communication (including Welsh, which should remain compulsory to age 16, and modern foreign languages)
  • Mathematics and numeracy
  • Science and technology.

Find out more through the poster below:

A curriculum for Wales
(Adobe PDF File)

Childcare Offer Capital Grant Programme

Huw Irranca Davies AM has announced a £60m capital grant programme for 2018-2021. The programme is to be focused on supporting the co-location of existing Foundation Phase provision with the Childcare Offer provision on a single site, wherever possible. 

Download NDNA's briefing paper below to find out what the programme is, its aim and our recommendations. 

Foundation Phase Excellence Network Zone

Have you heard of the Foundation Phase Excellence Network Zone? The zone is a one-stop shop for all Foundation Phase practitioners. It showcases effective practice in key areas such as child development, Welsh language, pedagogy and leadership, with case studies and films, quality assured resources, links to networks and regular news items.

Find out more below and at hwb.gov.wales/fpen

   

Child Measurement Programme for Wales: Current Annual Report

The sixth report of the Child Measurement Programme (CMP) for Wales contains key findings of the programme carried out with children attending reception class in schools in Wales 2016/2017.

The CMP for Wales aims to find out how children in Wales are growing so the NHS can better plan and deliver healthcare. The programme involves working with School Nursing Teams across Wales to weigh and measure children in every reception class.

The report highlights that 27.1% of children in Wales are overweight or obese, compared to 22.6% in England of this age group.

The NHS has developed a document to help families understand the Child Measurement Programme, including some handy hints for healthy families.

Welsh Language Level Checker / Gwiriwr Lefel Dysgu Cymraeg

27 June 2018

Accurately identify your current level of Welsh language as a childcare, early years and play work professional with the 'Learn Welsh Level Checker'.

This diagnosti c tool includes competency questions about reading writing, listening and speaking. 

Contact EDI@meithrin.cymru today to receive your login details. You can then find out your current level and get recommenda tions for what steps you can next take to improve your Welsh language skills.


Childcare Offer for Wales FAQs: updated June 2018

26 June 2018

The Welsh Government has published a document for providers about the early implementation of the childcare offer for Wales answering a number of frequently asked questions.

The new childcare offer will provide working parents with 30 hours of early education and childcare for 3 and 4 year olds, for up to 48 weeks per year. The offer will build on children’s existing early education entitlement during term time, and provide 30 hours of childcare for 9 weeks of the holidays.

Find out more about Childcare Offer for Wales here

New curriculum updates

22 June 2018

Below are the latest updates and developments to the new curriculum for Wales being made available for feedback next year:

Autism and language investigation

12 April 2018

The University of Cambridge are investigating the language learning experiences of children with autism. They are inviting families with children aged 3-12 with a clinical diagnostic of autism to take part in the study.

They are particularly interested in bilingual and multilingual children and their language learning experiences, and are keen to ensure that families from Wales are represented in the study.

The research is part of a wider research programme called ‘MEITS’ – more information can be found here on multilingualism and identity.

Small Business Rate Relief Scheme in Wales

Welsh Government logo27 March 2018

Following NDNA Cymru's work with the Welsh Government, nurseries can now get more support through a Small Business Rate Relief Scheme (SBRR) in Wales from 1 April.

The scheme is administered by local authorities and is automatically applied to the bills of eligible ratepayers.

Eligible registered childcare premises with a rateable value of:

  • Up to £6,000 receive 100% relief
  • Between £6,001 and £20,500 receive relief on a tapered basis from 100% to zero.

Bills are usually issued from March on-wards and ratepayers should contact their individual local authority with any queries regarding their non-domestic rates bill and entitlement to rates relief.  

The relief available from 1 April 2018 will be reviewed by the Welsh Government in order to consider if any additional assistance may be given to support the childcare sector. 

Care Inspectorate Wales Care Directory update

27 March 2018
Care Inspectorate Wales logoFrom April 2018, individuals will be able to search the The Care Inspectorate Wales Care Directory for the name of a Wales-based provider and see all the services provided by them.

Childminder inspection reports will now also be available on the website, previously these needed to be directly requested. Childminder inspection reports will not contain the address of the registered service, so the privacy of people using the services will be maintained.

The Care Inspectorate Wales is doing this to ensure that information about provider services are easily available for people to find. It will also bring childcare and play in line with inspection reports for other regulated services.  
Care providers and childminders do not need to take any action, The Care Inspectorate Wales will contact you directly about this.

If you have any questions, please email kevin.barker@gov.wales 

NDNA Cymru could provide you with supported employment

04 January 2018
Practitioner with childrenNDNA Cymru have successfully employed 19 Trainee Nursery Assistants in Blaenau Gwent and Caerphilly on their Childcare Works programme and have a further 13 places to fill in Rhondda Cynon Taf. If you are interested, find out more below.

Find out more

CSSIW Annual report 2016-17 published

22 November 2017
CSSIW logo
The Annual report outlines the changes which have taken place over the last year, to include the extension of the age range of children being cared for to 12 years and the introduction of ratings.  

The report states that the  childcare and play sector is generally compliant; however, a significant level of enforcement action has been undertaken in relation to 34 childcare and play services, primarily relating to safeguarding concerns.  

View the full report here  

Childcare Choices: help with costs for childcare

22 November 2017 
CSSIW logo
CSSIW has released information for support when applying for help with childcare costs through the UK Government digital childcare service Childcare Choices.

Parents of children born on or after 1 April 2013, and parents of disabled children under 17, can now apply through the childcare service for Tax-Free Childcare.

Read more from CSSIW here and share with parents at your setting.

 

CSSIW 2017 – 2020 strategic plan published

22 November 2017 
CSSIW logoIn CSSIW's 2017-2020 strategic plan, four priorities have been identified, some of the strategic priorities and actions identified for childcare are:

  • Strategic priority 3: Develop a programme of thematic reviews including a thematic review in Childcare and Play Inspection (2021 – 2025)
  • Strategic priority 4: We will advise and respond effectively to legislative changes which impact CSSIW, including the childcare offer for Wales.

Action plan by March 2019: 

  • Review and implement changes following the review of national minimum standards for childcare and play
  • Review our processes to support the delivery and implementation of the childcare offer for Wales
  • Publish ratings for childcare and play services.

View the full strategic plan here.

New events from Qualification Wales

16 November 2017 

Qualifications Wales are running a series of new engagement events including Childcare Development, Play (school based) and L1/2 Health and Social Care.

These events are critical for children’s care, learning, development and play. Find out more here  

NSPCC Take 5 Campaign

24 October 2017 
The NSPCC has launched a Take 5 campaign developed for parents in Wales. The campaign gives advice to parents to help with challenging situations when children may be misbehaving.

The campaign asks parents to take a moment and follow these simple steps when feeling overwhelmed: stop, breathe, react calmly. It also provides information on setting rules, showing affection, and looking after yourself.

Find more information about the campaign here

The EDI Project

4 October 2017 
The purpose of the EDI project is to help shape and develop bespoke, appropriate Welsh Language training courses for the Early Years and Play sectors. It’s part of the ‘Work Welsh’ scheme being developed by the National Centre for Learning Welsh.

The success / accuracy of the mapping project relies on us collecting information from Early Years and Play workers across Wales- this means we need to know what you can already do, so that the new courses meet your needs.

Changes to the National Minimum Standards for Regulated Childcare for children up to the age of 12 years

12 September 2017 
Welsh Government logo

The Welsh Government has sent out a letter providing advanced notice about future requirements which will form part of the National Minimum Standards for Regulated Childcare for children up to the age of 12 years (NMS).

Changes will relate to Standards 13.6(DC) and 13.7(DC) Day Care, concerning qualifications that are required for persons in charge and non-supervisory staff working in regulated childcare and play settings for children aged 0 to 12 years

Proposed changes to how you apply for a DBS check

16 August 2017 

CSSIW are proposing changes to how you can apply for a DBS check. The changes mean that from 2018, CSSIW will no longer directly manage DBS checks - they will be managed by an external provider. You will be required to pay the DBS fee and an administration charge.


Find out more and share your views

Nationwide search for parenting stories

2 August 2017 
A campaign  has launched a search for four inspirational families to share their parenting stories. Parenting. Give it time is recruiting for Welsh parents, with children aged 0-5, to nominate their families to take part by 31 August 2017. You can share the below with your parents

Download a poster in English and Welsh below.

Measles outbreak

21 July 2017 

There is currently a measles outbreak in Newport and Torfaen, and the government has issued guidance for childcare providers and parents.

Download a poster in English and Welsh below.

Myths of ALN Bill

14 July 2017 
Welsh Government logoThe Welsh Government has issued resources and guidance tackling misconceptions about the additional learning needs bill and what it hopes to achieve.

Access the resources  

Guidance on wraparound childcare

5 June 2017 
NDNA is part of the Cwlwm partnership, which has developed a guide for providers on wraparound childcare. Click below to find out what the guidance contains and download it in English or Welsh.

See the guidance  

New Childcare Offer in Wales

13 June 2017 
Welsh Government logo The Welsh Government has announced its new Childcare Offer for Wales for the early implementer local authorities.  The new childcare offer will provide working parents with 30 hours of early education and childcare for 3 and 4 year olds, for up to 48 weeks per year. 

View resources and guidance here

FAQs on SASS part two

12 June 2017 

CSSIW has published bilingual questions and answers on the Self Assessment of Service Statement (SASS) part two and Quality of Care Review.

See the FAQs


Foundation Phase Action Plan infographics

10 May 2017 

The Welsh Government has published a set of infographics, which outline important Foundation Phase pedagogy for learning environments. The infographics cover topics from continuous provision to outdoor learning, and are available in both English and Welsh. Click below to take a look and download them for your setting.

See more

Free Welsh language training - un, dau tri – hwyl a sbri

27 April 2017 

NDNA is offering free Welsh language training, in a six week course aimed at childcare practitioners. You can find out more in the flyer below, and contact NDNA’s Welsh Language support worker Billie Ward on billie.ward@ndna.org.uk if you are interested.

 

Template letter on the Childcare Offer for Wales

13 April 2017 

NDNA has put together a template letter for nurseries to send to their local Assembly members, calling for actions to support nurseries and make the Childcare Offer for Wales sustainable.

Read more and download the letter


Update on the Childcare Offer

3 April 2017 

The Welsh Government has released an update on the Childcare Offer for Wales, including a core script and a written statement from Carl Sargeant, Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Children.

See the updates

Childcare Offer FAQs

29 March 2017 

Bilingual Frequently Asked Question documents have been produced, for providers and parents, about the Childcare Offer in Wales.

See the FAQs

Free Welsh Language Toolkit factsheets

29 March 2017 

NDNA Cyrmu has developed a Welsh Language toolkit in conjunction with Wales PPA and Welsh for Adults. The toolkit is free and includes a range of factsheets in both Welsh and English, to support practitioners to embed the Welsh language into their daily practice.

See the factsheets

Talk Childcare Regional Feedback Forums

1 March 2017
The free childcare offer will be available across Wales for all eligible families once developed. Find out more and have your say at your local Regional Feedback Forum.

Find out more and book your place here.   

 

Talk Childcare update

1 February 2017
Welsh Government logo
Find updated information on the Welsh Government's Talk Childcare campaign, plus links to share with parents and a bilingual flyer to download.

 See more   

 

'Parenting. Give it time' initiative

25 January 2017
Welsh Government logo
‘Parenting. Give it time’ is a Welsh Government initiative giving practical advice to parents on encouraging positive behaviour, boosting their child’s confidence and supporting their development. It also provides tips and advice on common parenting concerns including tantrums, bedtimes, bath times and potty training. 

 
Find out more and download the resources.

Welsh Government: ALN programme

19 December 2016 
Welsh Government logoThe Welsh Government is transforming the system for supporting children and young people with additional learning needs (ALN) in Wales through an ALN programme.  

The programme will transform the separate systems for special educational needs (SEN) in schools and learning difficulties and/or disabilities (LDD) in further education, to create a unified system for supporting learners from 0 to 25 with ALN.

Find out more and download the 'ALN Factsheet – How will the Bill affect non-maintained early years education providers in receipt of local authority funding?' here

Get involved: Early Years & Childcare Engagement Events

19 December 2016 
Care Council for Wales logoThe Care Council are currently working closely with Qualifications Wales to develop a new suite of qualifications, after a review highlighted issues within the sector.   

The Care Council are running a series of sector engagement events across Wales in January to gain your feedback,

Find out more   

Public Health Wales: Norovirus guidance

16 December 2016 
Public Health Wales logoNorovirus is currently circulating in local communities, some north Wales hospitals, care homes, schools and nurseries have been affected. Due to this increased activity, Public Health Wales have released some guidance.

View the guidance here

Download Public Health Wales' letter here

Key points of Welsh Government 30 hours offer at NDNA Cymru member event

22 November 2016 
The 30 hours childcare offer for Wales is the most ambitious in the UK. It will be 30 hours per week – which includes early education and childcare – for 48 weeks of the year, for working parents of three and four-year-olds.

The Welsh Government spoke at the NDNA Cymru member event on 16 November, here is a rundown of the key points. 

View the key points

View Wales Knowledge Hub archive items here

Do you use wooden pallets as resources at nursery? 

19 June 2018

Do you use wooden pallets as resources at nursery?

View guidance here on the danger of re-using pallets treated with Methyl Bromide (marked MB) for craft activities.