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Out of all the hurdles so far in setting up my own provision.. this one has got me. The pre-school side I have experience in.. but as for the extended provision to allow for a breakfast and afterschool for siblings, or school children too... where do I start with vehicles? I am so confused now.. opened a whole new can of worms here! Do I hire a van/buy one/can I use my car if there aren't many/do I need a different licence.. oh dear... What do you after schoolers do? x

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Out of all the hurdles so far in setting up my own provision.. this one has got me. The pre-school side I have experience in.. but as for the extended provision to allow for a breakfast and afterschool for siblings, or school children too... where do I start with vehicles? I am so confused now.. opened a whole new can of worms here! Do I hire a van/buy one/can I use my car if there aren't many/do I need a different licence.. oh dear... What do you after schoolers do? x

hi oddly enough my new boss is allso wondering the xact same questions.

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You can't charge for taking children to and from school - it has to be free (otherwise you're a taxi and you need a taxi drivers licence)

 

We overcharge for breakfast and then take children to school for free. You do need business use on your insurance (that shouldn't be extra)

 

We also check staff licence details, car details, tax and insurance. We also have form for parents to sign to say that they are taking advantage of our 'free trip to school'. We also provide all the car seats / boosters etc

 

pw

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I'll have to change my contract after reading this. As a childminder I do all sorts of drop offs etc and I charge a small amount per child per journey to cover fuel.

 

I need to speak to my insurance co and have a rethink. (Something else that's more attractive than writing assignments)

 

I am so glad I found this forum!

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I'll have to change my contract after reading this. As a childminder I do all sorts of drop offs etc and I charge a small amount per child per journey to cover fuel.

 

I need to speak to my insurance co and have a rethink. (Something else that's more attractive than writing assignments)

 

I am so glad I found this forum!

 

 

Hi

 

Charge for the journey for school through some other means - the time in the car could be free but waiting at the school gate could be jolly expensive!!!! :o

 

pw

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You're right. It's probably possible to sort it that way but I'll have to put some thought in as I do swimming, Monkey music, toddler groups etc which parents pay for direct.

I could charge for use of the car seat/boosters instead.

Any other childminders out there who do lots of trips?

What do you do?

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You're right. It's probably possible to sort it that way but I'll have to put some thought in as I do swimming, Monkey music, toddler groups etc which parents pay for direct.

I could charge for use of the car seat/boosters instead.

Any other childminders out there who do lots of trips?

What do you do?

 

I don't charge extra for car use, my rates are higher than most but include trips out of setting

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Talk about opening up a can of worms. You can't charge extra for the session and say the transport is free, this still comes under the terms of hire and reward. If you are to run any form of motorised transport you would need a drive and an escort, if you wish to operate a minibus you would need to take another driving test to get your PCV license, you would also need to apply for a restricted PSV license to show you have the financial means to keep the minibus in a roadworthy condition.

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Hi, as a childminder I have an all inclusive charge for outings , groups etc.. (£4.00)an hour, but I charge £5.50 per hour for a school pick up or drop off. This covers the extra cost of using the car for the school runs.

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I have recently been all through this and was told;

1. Have to have business insurance by law if you carrying children in vehicle from a business. (Chilminders can add onto their normal insurance, nurseries cant)

2. Also seatbelts and booster seats

3. At least 2 named people to be insured on the vehicle in case something happens whilst transporting the children (how this works with childminders I dont know !).

4 At least two people should be travelling at all times with the children even with a walking bus (insurance may be invalid if not- if one member of staff got hit by a car, or fainted the other would be there with the children!), just like inside the Nursery one person never left alone.

 

We struggle as we take 1 children to school and need 2 staff, its so not cost effective!!!!!

No disrespect to childminders but it seems one rule for them and one for nurseries!

 

Morton Michel are always on the end of the phone it might be best to give them a call for some advice.

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This should clear it up

 

Minibus law catches nursery

By Nicole Curnow, Nursery World, 8 July 2004

Nurseries and out-of-school clubs using their own mini-buses to transport more than eight children risk prosecution if they do not have a Public Services Vehicle (PSV) licence. Last month, DabbyDales Children's Day Care nursery in Dereham, Norfolk, took its two minibuses - a 12-and a 15-seater - off the road after it became aware of a law requiring drivers to hold PSV licences.

Nurseries and out-of-school clubs using their own mini-buses to transport more than eight children risk prosecution if they do not have a Public Services Vehicle (PSV) licence.

Last month, DabbyDales Children's Day Care nursery in Dereham, Norfolk, took its two minibuses - a 12-and a 15-seater - off the road after it became aware of a law requiring drivers to hold PSV licences.

 

Nursery owner Caroline Ellis found out about the legislation from a parent who is a local taxi driver. She said, 'It was not mentioned at the time I set up the minibus service three years ago.'

 

Ms Ellis contacted the Vehicles and Operations Standards Agency (VOSA), which works with regional traffic commissioners to ensure compliance with regulations. It confirmed that she was breaking the law and should take her minibuses off the road immediately.

 

Ms Ellis has stopped using her minibuses because it is too expensive to license her five drivers at an estimated cost of £300 to £400 per person.

 

According to VOSA's guide for operators, 'if a vehicle is suitable for carrying nine or more passengers and does so for "hire or reward", it is a public service vehicle'. There are 'special exceptions for school buses owned and operated by local education authorities and vehicles run under permits'.

 

Ms Ellis said she was 'disappointed' that this regulation had not been made clear and that before setting up the minibus service she had consulted her insurance agency, Ofsted, the local council and the transport agency. She said, 'How are we supposed to find out the law if the Government does not inform us? The council knew I was running the buses and Ofsted did check our driving licences and insurance policies, so why didn't they mention it?'

 

The words 'hire or reward' have caused confusion among nursery owners.

 

One owner of a large out-of-school chain insisted that it did not need a PSV licence because it did not charge extra fees for transport and had a flat-rate fee for every child - even those not using the minibus.

 

But Derrick Howlett, senior traffic examiner for East Anglia VOSA, said that operating a minibus with more than eight children, regardless of whether they are charged separately for that service, requires a PSV licence.

 

A DfES spokesperson said, 'It is clearly stated in the introduction to the national standards that they do not override the need for providers to comply with other legislation and that it is 'the responsibility of the registered person to ensure they are operating within other legislative requirements, including having an appropriate licence and insurance for a particular type of vehicle'.

 

If an unlicensed nursery minibus carrying more than eight children is stopped by the police or VOSA, the nursery owner may be taken to court.

 

 

 

 

Hope this helps

Edited by markimark
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We struggle as we take 1 children to school and need 2 staff, its so not cost effective!!!!!

No disrespect to childminders but it seems one rule for them and one for nurseries!

 

You are quite right. It doesn't always make a lot of sense.

 

There are lots of occasions when childminders are treated differently - particularly when it comes to funding!

 

I'll have to sort this all out before I next use the car for childminded children which, luckily, is not for a couple of weeks.

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OMG! Does anyone not do the school run.. is there a way the service is only for the care but someone else collects the child in time to take them to school.. what a nightmare, It's never straight forward is it! Thanks for so many replies everyone!

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so just to get this straight in my head

 

2 staff at all times walking bus and own cars or minibus, no charge if using minibus or staff cars, and specific insurance if staff use own cars (sorry i do sometimes have the blonde syndrome!!! lol) :o

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our walking bus has 2 staff for the ratio of children, we pick up and drop off at 2 schools . we have 2 staff for each school but would increase this for our ratios though we have never had to we charge 50p for each walk as this goes towards the cost of support. its an eco friendly way of doing it our parents like it with good risk assesments walking bus rules etc it has worked for us for14yrs

sue

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  • 2 months later...

i have spoken to a license enforcment officer today who informed me that it became law on Jan 1st , that all childminders and afterschool clubs must have a special license to use their own transport.

this requires a CRB - a medical and your car has to be less than 5 years old. a cost of approx £300 per year.Business insurance is not enough

At present they do not know how enforce this as they do not know where to begin!!

she also thought that if you had a crash with a child on board your insurance would not pay out because you have a paying passenger on board??

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i have spoken to a license enforcment officer today who informed me that it became law on Jan 1st , that all childminders and afterschool clubs must have a special license to use their own transport.

this requires a CRB - a medical and your car has to be less than 5 years old. a cost of approx £300 per year.Business insurance is not enough

At present they do not know how enforce this as they do not know where to begin!!

she also thought that if you had a crash with a child on board your insurance would not pay out because you have a paying passenger on board??

 

 

Is that also true for Day Nurseries? If it is we'll all be walking tomorrow!

 

pw x

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she told me childminders, children's centres, day nurseries and after school clubs. it gets frightening we can't do our jobs

 

 

Do you know who she worked for? - if what she says is right it makes a big difference to lots of us!!! which agency did she represent? They must have some official details that we can look up?

 

thanks

pw

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I have just spoken to the DVLA and had a very clear answer that nothing has changed. You are allowed to carry up to eight none fee paying passengers in your own car without any special license. If you carry more than eight you will need a minibus license which entails the fee and the medical etc.

 

My insurers said a similar thing and just made it clear that I needed occasional business cover and I must not ask for any payment or contribution towards fuel from parents.

 

If someone else would like to confirm this with the DVLA as well and post it on here we might all be able to breathe a sigh of relief.

Edited by AlisonP
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The Lady i spoke to works for our local borough council licensing enforcement deptartment. parents are paying us to collect children from school within their fees so does this mean that they are classed as fee paying passengers !!!!

i'm still not sure ?

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I clarified with my insurers that I could include the costs of journeys in my general hourly rate and that was totally fine. They just don't allow you to make any charge or ask for a contribution per journey.

 

The lady at DVLA was also completely happy about my carrying childminded children in my car on a normal license. I think she thought I was a bit thick because I kept asking her again in different ways just to be sure!

 

It might be a good idea for everyone to check with their own insurers as they may not all have the same guidelines as mine.

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Now for my next part of this question! Where did you all get your vehicles from? Are you using your own? Is there some kind of finance plan you can get if you wanted to lease a 7 seater or something? I have spoken to a finance advisor at a garage, but I reckon this is the best place for advice!

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  • 5 months later...

For those of you who have the occasional business use added on to your personal car insurance.. Was it much of an increase to pay? My Early Years Advisor told me it wouldn't cost anything, but when renewing our insurance it was a different story. I have now got a 7 seater ready for my passengers but still need to work out the best thing to do about the insurance (especially when I can't charge for any trips). Thanks again for previous replies!

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I have not had to pay a great deal more for occasional business use - I think last year they added it for free after they forgot to put it on the renewal.

 

I now tell parents that I cannot charge for journeys but that they could feel free to add a voluntary contribution to the bill to cover fuel costs I incur when taking their child to toddlers etc.

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