Objectives and accessibility
Home-based care can be organised by childminders. Childminders are not qualified to carry out the preschool education programme; they provide only care. They have to enter the register of childminders at the ministry responsible for education.
The minister responsible for education specifies further requirements for home-based settings.
The law allows for the home-based provision of the preschool education programme. It can be organised in a home of a preschool teacher and/or preschool teacher assistant who are employed in a kindergarten. A private preschool teacher can also set up home-based provision. In this case, the private preschool teacher has to be on the register of private preschool teachers at the ministry responsible for education.
In addition, home-based provision of the preschool education programme can be organised by a kindergarten or private preschool teacher in the form of the education and care family, as well.
Home-based provision of the preschool education programme is very rare.
Requirements for childminders and child ratios
Childminders have to have upper secondary technical or general education and a relevant supplementary vocational qualification, and/or meet the requirements for education staff.
Childminders caring for preschool-aged children can provide early childhood care for up to six children in their home.
In the 2022/2023 school year, there were 334 childminders registered with the ministry. (Source: Ministry of Education)
The childminders caring for preschool-aged children can provide care in a residential building that has proper building and safety permits. The rooms and equipment used have to comply with the rules on norms and technical requirements for the space and equipment of a kindergarten. In particular, a playroom has to be separate from the rooms occupied by the family members. The equipment in the playroom and other rooms reserved only for children have to comply with the standard on kindergarten equipment. The bathroom facilities for children have to be separate from those used by the family members.
Childminders can receive funds from the municipality for individual children, namely 20% of the price of the programme for which children were waitlisted. The municipality of the parents’ permanent residence or permanent residence of one parent and the child covers the subsidy.
Providers of home-based preschool education:
Education and care family
Kindergartens or private preschool teachers can organise the home-based provision of the preschool education programme in the form of an education and care family, in the teacher's own home. The rooms and equipment in the education and care family setting have to comply with the rules on norms and technical requirements for the space and equipment of a kindergarten.
A kindergarten sets up an education and care family according to the requirements of and interest shown by the local community. It has to receive approval from the municipality. The municipality agrees to this kind of setting if the number of children enrolled in a public kindergarten is greater than the number of available places in that kindergarten.
Kindergartens select the providers following a public call for applications. Kindergartens sign a special agreement with the selected providers. The agreement sets out mutual rights, obligations and requirements for the provision. The payment by parents for children in the education and care family is regulated.
In 2022/2023, records show that there were 22 children in education and care educational families, in four classes. (Ministry of Education)
Private preschool teachers
Private preschool teachers can organise home-based preschool education in cooperation with kindergartens or independently. To do so, they have to have the status of a private preschool teacher and enter the register at the ministry responsible for education. The registered private preschool teachers have to meet the same academic requirements as preschool teachers and/or preschool teacher assistants or counsellors in mainstream settings.
Private preschool teachers pursue the activity of preschool education as independent entrepreneurs.
If need be, kindergartens issue a public call for applications. Kindergartens enter into an agreement with the preschool teachers selected.
The municipality can grant a concession to a private preschool teacher, depending on the demand for free places in their catchment area. If the municipality is not interested in awarding a concession, the private preschool teachers charge parents for services in full or seek donor and sponsor funds. In this case, it is recommended that private preschool teachers sign a special agreement with parents on mutual rights and obligations.
In the 2022/2023 school year, the ministry had one private preschool teacher on the register. (Ministry of Education)