Campaigners call on men to set up at-home childminding businesses

Eloise Feilden
Thursday, April 15, 2021

An initiative to create more home nurseries could see a positive change in the disparity between men and women training in early years education, campaigners have said.

Men are encouraged to set up their own childminding businesses. Picture: Adobe Stock
Men are encouraged to set up their own childminding businesses. Picture: Adobe Stock

Set up by the Fatherhood Institute, the Men In The Early Years (MITEY) project campaigns to make the early years sector more attractive and welcoming to men.

MITEY has recently endorsed the Tiney scheme which helps professionals childminders to set up businesses within their own homes.

Tiney assists professionals by providing early years training and business coaching, as well as Ofsted approval, a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) update service and paediatric first aid training. The scheme allows individuals to set up home nurseries for up to six children between the ages of one and four.

Dr Jeremy Davies, leader of the MITEY project and head of communications at the Fatherhood Institute, endorsed the Tiney scheme for filling a “gap in the market” when it comes to home nurseries.

He said: “It talks directly to the average person on the street rather than assuming a lot of knowledge about this sector.

“It aligns well with what we as a campaign are trying to do, which is to find ways of attracting what is really a new audience to the sector.”

According to MITEY data, men make up just three per cent of England’s early years workforce, rising to four per cent in Scotland. These numbers remain low compared with figures in Norway, where government investment has meant that men make up 10 per cent of the national workforce.

Lockdowns in the UK have caused an increase in the number of men caring for their own children, and unreleased data from the Fatherhood Institute suggests that the response from fathers has been overwhelmingly positive.

He said: “Once you have the experience of understanding your own children very well, what makes them tick and the tricks of how to deal with behaviour and how to help them learn, you know that kind of stuff can come in very useful when you're doing it professionally.”

For more information about the scheme click here.

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