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Legal requirements for staff to child ratio's

Day nurseries and pre-schools must have a staff to child ratio of;

  • 1:8 for children aged 3 to 5
  • 1:4 for children aged 2 to 3 
  • 1:3 for children under 2 years

Childminders can care for a maximum of 6 children under 8 years old. Of these 6 children, a maximum of 3 may be young children, under the age of 5 and only 1 of these can be under 1.

Some exceptions can be made to these ratio's, for example, for sibling babies or when caring for their own baby and these are outlined in the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage.

Childminders can care for older children over the age of 8, but this must not affect the care of the children under the age of 8.