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Staff to child ratios in early years and playwork

If you are an early years or playwork provider or a home-based childcarer, you may need to meet specific legal requirements for the ratio of adults to children. These requirements depend on the age of the children in your care and the type of provider you are. 

Early Years Register

If your setting is registered on the Early Years Register you will need to meet the legal requirements set out in section 3 of the revised Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework (2012). The Early Years Register is for providers caring for children from birth until the 31 August after their fifth birthday.

Childcare Register

If your setting is registered on the Childcare Register you will need to meet the relevant regulations set out in the Childcare Register. The Childcare Register lists providers who are registered by Ofsted to care for children from 1 September after their fifth birthday to 17 years old. The register has two parts - compulsory and voluntary.

Ofsted factsheet

Ofsted has published a factsheet called Childcare - The numbers and ages of children that providers on the Early Years and Childcare Registers may care for. It gives examples and explains the changes it introduced in September 2012 to meet the revised Early Years Foundation Stage.

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  • Updated: 25 Feb 2013
  • Tracey Rees
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