No ‘big bang’ approach to childminder regulations, says Minister for Children

Roderic O’Gorman moves to reassure childminders that there will be no compulsory registration

Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman has said that there will be no compulsory registration for childminders under new legislation to allow for subsidies for parents.

Mr O’Gorman has said that he wants to work with child minders in drafting up regulations for the sector. and there will not be a “big bang approach”.

“There’s not going to be hard deadlines, there’s not going to be compulsion. We’re trying to create a system that is attractive to childminders,” he said.

The Minister is expected to seek Cabinet approval to bring forward legislation designed to change the legal status of childminders to make future regulation possible and to allow for the NCS to be opened to more parents.


Currently, parents using childminders cannot access the National Childcare Scheme, but those whose children are in creches can avail of subsididies.

Mr O’Gorman he told RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland. Instead there will be a “step by step” approach to encourage every child minder to adopt the new measures.

Draft regulations have not yet been completed, he said. He would continue to engage with child minders and representatives to set out the steps. Mr O’Gorman said he hoped that parents can start using the NCS system at the latter end of 2024.

The Minister said he knew some childminders were nervous, but he wanted to work to ensure that the new regulations would be attractive to childminders and parents.

There is no centralised registration system for childminders, who typically work in people’s homes, but it is estimated there are 15,000 in Ireland. Fewer than 80 were registered with Tusla as of last September.

Childminders who are not registered with Tusla, the child and family agency, cannot be considered for the NCS.

Vivienne Clarke

Vivienne Clarke is a media monitor and reporter