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Childcare for a child with SEND
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How to find Childcare

You can search for childcare in Barnsley by clicking here and following these quick steps:

Step 1: Select the provider type
Step 2: Add your postcode
Step 3: Add how far you would travel in the mile range
Step 4: Press Search

The search results will show a list of childcare settings and a map showing you where the settings are.

What next?

Clicking on the setting name will let you read the service description written by the childcare setting as well as letting you look at their Ofsted report 

 The service description contains 3 questions that tell you more about how the setting support children with SEND

  • How do we support children or young people with a special educational need or disability?
  • What specialist training, experience and expertise do we have to be able to support children with special educational needs and disabilities?
  • How accessible is our setting?

If you like what you read and are interested, contact the setting to talk through the times and days you need and arrange a visit

Childcare Checklist: things to ask a Childcare setting

All Ofsted registered settings will have a Special Educational Needs Coordinator, (SENCO)

If you choose a childminder they will also be the SENCO, they are the best person to talk to about your child’s additional needs and support.

What does a SENCO do?

Their role involves:

  • Making sure everyone in the setting knows their duties when supporting children with SEND
  • Making sure everyone knows the settings approach to identifying and meeting special educational needs.
  • Making sure parents are closely involved with their child’s education.
  • Talking with SEND services to make sure everything is in place for your child

Things you might want to ask them

  • How will the setting support your child’s specific needs?
  • Does the setting have the capacity to support your child? what ratio do they operate to?
  • What specialist training have the staff done
  • Does the setting have any adaptions that might help your child?
  • Is the setting familiar with the additional funding that might be available, and how to apply.
  • Has the setting been involved with collecting evidence for EHCP?
  • Do they currently have any children with SEND in the setting? How are they supported?
  • Can I look around the building and outside play areas?
  • Ask about settling in, can you stay with you child until they are comfortable? 

It’s important that you read the settings policies and understand them, if you have any questions you should talk to the setting

Support in settings

 The first step is to talk to the setting.

Discussing your child's needs with the SENCO at the setting will help them to understand what support may be needed. 

The setting could apply for: 

Early Years Inclusion Grant
If you child needs extra equipment or more staff are needed to support your child in setting they can apply for the Early Years Inclusion Grant.
The grant is paid directly to childcare setting. The setting will talk to you if they want to apply for the grant.

Disability Access Fund (DAF)
If your child is 3- or 4-year-olds and in receipt of DLA settings can apply for the Disability Access Fund. Settings can use the funding to help toward making reasonable adjustments so your child can attend.
The funding is paid directly to childcare setting. The setting will talk to you if they want to apply for the grant.

FREE childcare for 2 year olds with SEND

Up to 15hrs a week free childcare is available for 2-year-olds who have an EHC Plan, or who receive Disability Living Allowance (DLA), regardless of total household income.

To apply ring Families Information Service on 0800 0345 340 or email:

Help with Childcare Costs

Government help with childcare costs is available for both working and non-working families with children with SEND.

See what you are eligible for and how to apply here

What if I'm not happy with a childcare setting?
Talk to the setting first about any concerns you may have. Most of the time the setting and family can work through the concerns
If you and the setting cannot find a solution, you can register your complaint with Ofsted by clicking here

Jargon Buster : What does that mean?


Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills.

They inspect services which provide education and skills for learners of all ages. They also inspect services that care for children and young people and make sure they are up to standard.

Inclusion         providing equal access to opportunities and resources for all people
PoliciesRules, or procedures that an organisation follows.