These can offer a wide range of activities such as sports, outdoor and indoor games, music, arts, crafts and drama.
Many operate a booking system and may give substantial discounts to parents who book early. Other schemes offer 'open access' where children can just turn up on the day.
- Who runs them?
- Where does the childcare take place?
- What hours do they open?
- How old are the children they look after?
- What is the average fee?
- What is the ratio of staff to children?
- Will they have any checks?
- Do they have any training?
- How can I apply for a place?
- Further reading
Who runs them?
It depends on how they are set up, they could be run directly by the school, a private company or a voluntary organisation.
Where does the childcare take place?
It can be in any type of venue including a school hall, classroom, local church hall, scout hut or leisure centre.
What hours do they open?
The hours they open will depend on the scheme but some will offer extended days from 8am to 6pm for an additional charge.
How old are the children they look after?
It will depend on their registration but most will take children from the age of 4 to 12 years but this is different for each club and some will take older or younger children.
What is the average fee?
The average fee in Surrey is usually between £29 to £54 per day. Some providers may offer concessions or discounts for siblings.
You can also find details of support available to help with childcare costs on our Paying for childcare web page.
What is the ratio of staff to children?
This will depend on the age of the children. For children aged from 3 years up to the age of 8 years should have a 1 to 8 ratio. For children aged 8 years and older the ratio differs but a 1 to 10 is recommended where possible.
Will they have any checks?
Yes, all staff must have an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. The provider must follow their safer recruitment policy
Do they have any training?
Staff should hold certificates in first aid, food hygiene and safeguarding/child protection. A manager should hold a minimum of a level 3 in a relevant qualification, and 50% of the rest of the staff should hold a minimum of a level 2 in a relevant qualification. However, if they are on the Ofsted Voluntary Childcare Register then the requirement is one person with a minimum of level 2 in a relevant area of work or one person with training in the common core of skills and knowledge.
How can I apply for a place?
You can apply for a place by contacting the holiday play scheme directly. You can search for Ofsted registered playschemes in your area in our Childcare finder.
Our events for families directory has details of other activities running during the school holidays.
Your borough or district council's leisure department may also have information about holiday playschemes and activities on their website.
You can find further information about finding and paying for childcare in our Choosing childcare booklet.
Files available to download
Checklist - breakfast clubs, after schools clubs and holiday playschemes (PDF)
Questions to ask and what to look out for when visiting a breakfast club, after school club or holiday playscheme