Should My Sitter Have a Babysitting Certification?

When it comes to leaving our children in the care of others we want the ultimate reassurance that we’re choosing to leave them in good hands. We want to know that our child’s needs will be met with confidence, and that the care they will receive will be similar to that which we provide ourselves. Our natural thoughts can therefore be to consider the qualifications our babysitter has, and consider which qualifications will give us the reassurance and peace of mind we are looking for.

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What Are Babysitting Certifications and Qualifications?

In the UK there is no requirement on babysitters to have set qualifications. As such, no ‘standard’ babysitting course exists. Nonetheless, many training and learning institutions throughout the country offer babysitting certification and qualifications. Typically, these qualifications are equivalent to Level 1 or 2 NVQ/City and Guilds 

Level 1 and 2 qualifications are intended for those yet to work in a particular area, those looking for an insight, and perhaps a stepping stone to their first work placement.

To give some idea, a Level 2 Babysitting Certification will likely give the learner a broad understanding of the skills they need when babysitting. It will include information about their responsibilities towards the child and the parents in theory, as well as some basic theoretical coverage of accident prevention and safety. Typically, these courses are aimed at young people from around age 14+ who themselves are not parents, or working in childcare. For them it may serve as a useful introduction to the concept of childcare as a longer term profession.

Importantly, it is highly unlikely for a babysitting qualification to involve practical assessment. Instead it will consist of theory and coursework, as well as perhaps an interview style test. Typically these courses are short.

Does My Babysitter Need a Babysitting Certification?

So, given the existence of babysitting certifications and qualifications, do you need to make sure your sitter has one?

In reality, babysitting certifications and qualifications are much like a launch pad to further study. If you’re choosing a babysitter who is very young and inexperienced in childcare then a babysitting certification may give you the peace of mind you’re looking for. However, if you choose a more experienced childcare professional, someone who is perhaps a parent themselves, or who has a verifiable track record in childcare roles, then the babysitting certification becomes redundant.

Childcare professionals tend to have a minimum qualification of at least Level 3, many equivalent to Level 5 with experience in a childcare leadership role. For higher level qualifications individuals are assessed not only in theory, but also often expected to gain work placement feedback and assessment. Choosing a Sitter who has experience and qualifications equal to Level 3 or above effectively removes any need for a Babysitting Certification as the depth of their knowledge and experience will far surpass that provided by the babysitting course.

Knowing Your Chosen Sitter is Reliable and Capable

All Sitters babysitters are chosen because of their experience and background in childcare roles. Many may work, or have worked, ‘day jobs’ in nurseries, preschools, as teachers, or nannies. In their day to day work many surpass the average parent for their childcare knowledge. They are confident individuals capable of coming in to any home with children and making them feel safe, secure, and at ease.

We also don’t believe that qualifications alone tell the full story. Other parents and those who’ve witnessed the Sitter at work are far better placed to judge an individual’s suitability for babysitting. That’s why we personally interview and verify the references of each and every Sitter available through Sitters.

When you choose a babysitter through Sitters they may not have a Babysitting Certification, but you can rest assured that they are more than qualified for the job.

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