childminder who used to be a teacher teaches a class outside in the forest

Should you leave teaching to become a childminder (Early Educator)?

According to a 2021 National Education Union survey involving 10,000 teachers, 36% intend to leave teaching within 5 years.

66% of teachers feel that their workload is only just manageable, or unmanageable most/all of the time. A staggering 95% of teachers are worried about the impact of increased workload on their own wellbeing.

The survey also asked what would help reduce this stress. Smaller workloads and less pressure from performance tables and inspections were amongst the top priorities. The government showing greater trust and listening more to teachers were also high on the list.

50% of teachers want less focus on performance and inspections

Are you the 1 in 3 that knows they have to leave teaching behind before they burn out? But you still want to make a difference in education? When you think about your future career, has ‘become a childminder’ ever been on the table? At Koru Kids, we call our childminders Early Educators—and for former teachers, it can be a really rewarding career move.

Why would I leave teaching to become a Koru Kids Early Educator?

childminder reads book to children in the park
Many teachers find the move into childminding a positive one


Incompatibility with home life 

Working parents can find it difficult to get part-time teaching positions to spend more time with their children and save on childcare costs. Job shares are hard to come by, while supply teaching isn’t always a reliable source of steady income. 


More time with your own kids

As a childminder, you can look after your own children under 5 alongside the other children in your care, while doing the daily school run for older children (if within walking distance). The ability to choose term-time hours means you still have the option to spend holidays with your family.

Admin overload

The huge amount of work ‘behind the scenes’—planning, marking, assessments, meetings, displays—can feel impossible to balance, and many would love to simply focus on teaching children. Admin overload is a major factor for professionals who decide to leave teaching for another career.

Focus on play, not paperwork

We put paperwork in its place—and that place is small. There is still some to do, but a breeze compared to the mountain teachers face. 

Career stalemate

Many teachers are reluctant to move away from the classroom into middle/senior management, but are still eager to develop and learn new skills. A desire to stay in the classroom can also be viewed negatively as a lack of ambition.

Manage your own time

A move into childminding can be a way to enhance your existing skills and add more to your repertoire. You will learn how to run your own business, or take on an assistant. Our training allows teachers to focus on all the parts of the job they love most—child development, outdoor learning, emotional literacy—and leave behind the relentless focus on phonics and times tables.

Lack of autonomy

Teachers are burdened by substantial oversight at all times, from management and from Ofsted. Frequent drop-ins, learning walks, book scrutinies, lesson observations, mock Ofsted inspections, and real ones. A teacher may have less freedom to pursue their interests and be creative.

Freedom and creativity

You need to ensure that you are meeting the EYFS framework and supporting children to develop according to early learning goals, but childminders have complete control over the activities they set. Learning through play and allowing children to lead the way allows you to plan with your little humans rather than for them.

A stable salary?

A teaching salary can be hard to match in other industries, especially when changing careers. Financial commitments, particularly when you have children of your own, can make turning your back on the classroom feel risky. But for many that nagging feeling remains—you crave a new chapter doing something fulfilling and brave. 

Ability to earn up to £70,000

It is often a surprise to discover that childminding is not only hugely fulfilling—you can also earn well. Your earnings depend on whether you have small children of your own, and how many days per week you work. In inner London, you could earn on average £37,000 per year, and up to £70,000 if you expand with an assistant. Many teachers moving into childminding could actually earn more than through teaching, saving on childcare costs as well. 

No alternative

It is easy to feel trapped in teaching. You have worked so hard to qualify, and then climb the ladder. It feels daunting to start again in an entry-level position and have all of those years of training and effort amount to nothing. Many don’t want their valuable experience to go to ‘waste’ if they leave teaching behind.

Transferable skills

The time you’ve spent in the classroom will be an asset to childminding. You have a secure knowledge of child development, the early years curriculum, safeguarding, promoting positive behaviour, building relationships with parents—the list goes on. Your prior experience will be hugely attractive to families.

Lack of support

Teachers are expected to educate and get to know 30 children. They are made to follow strict schedules and curriculums, handle parent evenings, answer to school management, and catch up on paperwork over weekends.

Koru Kids in your corner

A self-employed childminder working with Koru Kids gets a supportive community behind them. Your responsible for 3 tiny humans, time-management is more flexible, and a friendly advisor is always at the other end of the phone. We provide ongoing support from ‘hello’.

We know you will have lots of questions before you decide to embark on a new career journey, so you can email us on, or read more before you apply and then ask us any questions during a brief intro call.

Interested in becoming a childminder?

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