Early Education and Childcare

Doncaster Families Information Service (FIS) is the best place to get information about registered childcare providers in the area. We hold up to date lists of Ofsted registered childminders, nurseries, out-of-school and holiday clubs. We can also provide information about unregistered childcare, such as nannies or parent-and-toddler groups.

Childcare Finder

Finding childcare couldn't be simpler with the our Childcare Finder. Check it out below.

Childcare Finder

What are my childcare options?


Childminders are self-employed childcare providers who will look after your child in their own home. Childminders are registered with Ofsted, and are inspected by Ofsted at least once in every four year inspection cycle. They may offer full day care or childcare before or after school or during school holidays.

Day Nurseries

Day nurseries look after and educate children from birth to age 5. There are different types of nurseries, including private, community, local authority and workplace nurseries. All nurseries should be registered and inspected by Ofsted. All nurseries have a designated Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) to co-ordinate provision for children with special needs.

View a full list of nurseries in Doncaster.

Sessional Care

Sessional care provision provides play and education sessions lasting about three hours for children aged 2–5.

Breakfast Clubs and After School Clubs

Breakfast clubs and after school clubs, also called out-of-school clubs, generally provide care for children aged between 4 and 14-years old, but you should check with each individual setting to see if they have their own age limits. Clubs normally run during term time and can offer care around the school day. 

Holiday Clubs

Holiday clubs offer similar services to out-of-school clubs, but run during the school holidays. Some can offer a full-day place, but some only operate on a part-time basis and will only be able to offer children care for the morning or afternoon.

School Based Childcare

Such as breakfast clubs, after school clubs and holiday activities offered by schools to their pupils. These facilities can also be searched for by using the FIS Childcare Finder.

Choosing a childcare provider

Finding the right childcare provider for your family can sometimes be a difficult task and there are lots of options to choose from. Families Information Service have written a short guide to help you choose a childcare provider which best suits the needs of you and your family.

To help you in your decision, you can also take a look at a childcare providers most recent Ofsted inspection report. You can find further helpful information on the Family and Childcare Trust website.

Help finding a childcare provider

If you’re struggling to find a suitable childcare provider to meet the needs of your family, you can use the childcare brokerage service provided Families Information Service.

The childcare brokerage service provides advice, guidance and practical one-to-one support for families with children and young people aged 0-19 years (up to 24 years if the young person has a disability).

To make a referral to the childcare brokerage service, contact Families Information Service on:

  • Freephone: 0800 138 4568
  • Email: fis@doncaster.gov.uk - all queries will be responded to within three working days

Help paying for childcare

Whether you have toddlers or teens, there are schemes available to help you pay towards the cost of childcare.

Funded Childcare

Other Help with Childcare Costs

Support While You Study

You may be able to get help with childcare while you study. Schemes include:

  • Care to Learn - for learners under 20 who are in school or sixth form.
  • Learner Support - for learners over 20 who are accessing further education
  • Childcare Grant - for learners who are in full-time higher education

Find out more about help paying for childcare while you study on the Gov.uk website.

You may be able to use your funded childcare hours with another scheme mentioned above, find out more about how the offers interact. If you're unsure which scheme would be right for you, you can use the Gov.uk childcare calculator.

Transition in Early Years

Transition is a space in time in which new things happen because of change. We all experience transitions in life and young children will go through a number of changes in their early education such as:

  • Home to grandparents
  • Home to nursery/childminder
  • Home to school
  • Nursery/childminder to nursery/childminder
  • Nursery/childminder to school

Your role as a parent/carer is important to support children to get ready for these transitions. Some children take transitions in their stride and some children need support. There are many things you can do to help to ensure it is a positive experience.

The documents below contain lots of useful information regarding transition in early years.

Transition in Early Years
Download (331KB - PDF)
Starting Primary School
Download (2.45MB - PDF)

Becoming a Childminder

Have you ever thought about becoming a childminder? Would you like some more information about what the job entails and how to become registered? Visit our webpage to find out more about becoming a childminder.

FIS Homepage


Last updated: 17 June 2022 10:15:14