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January 8th, 2021

Nannies exempt from Tier 5

On January 5th 2021 the Government announced a National Lockdown tier 5 structure to reduce the spread of coronavirus which placed further restrictions on socialising and gathering in groups outside of your household.

This tier excluded Nannies, childcare and other domestic employees from the restrictions. Throughout the Coronavirus epidemic the government has recognised the importance of allowing childcare givers to return to work in order to support parents throughout the pandemic.

The Government has announced in their “Guidance National Lockdown: Stay at Home”:

“You can only leave home for education, registered childcare, and supervised activities for children where the child is eligible to attend. Access to education and children’s activities for school-aged pupils is restricted. See further information on education and childcare. You can continue existing arrangements for contact between parents and children where they live apart. If you live in a household with anyone aged under 14, you can also form a childcare bubble….

….Where and when you can meet in larger groups? For work, or providing voluntary or charitable services, where it is unreasonable to do so from home. This can include work in other people’s homes where necessary - for example, for nannies, cleaners, social care workers providing support to children and families, or tradespeople. See guidance on working safely in other people’s homes


There are several ways that parents and carers can continue to access childcare:

  • Early years settings (including nurseries and childminders) remain open
  • Childminders should continue to allow children to attend as normal except for school-aged children. Childminders caring for school-aged children (including reception children) should only admit vulnerable children and children of critical workers.
  • Vulnerable children and children of critical workers can continue to use registered childcare, childminders and other childcare activities (including wraparound care)
  • parents are able to form a childcare bubble with one other household for the purposes of informal childcare, where the child is under 14. This is mainly to enable parents to work, and must not be used to enable social contact between adults
  • some households will also be able to benefit from being in a support bubble
  • nannies will be able to continue to provide services, including in the home.“

What options do I have as a parent for childcare?

As a parent, you will need to think if you need someone in a temporary or a permanent capacity. If you are looking for someone to go through school activities with your children during the lockdown, we advise that you hire a temporary teacher or tutor; if you were thinking of hiring someone to help you during after-school period, but the Covid-19 emergency has stopped your plans, we recommend that you get an after-school nanny who can help you in a full-time capacity while the social distancing rules are in place; if you have toddlers who are still not going to nursery, we recommend that you hire a full-time nanny, or if you are searching for someone to help you to keep your home tidy and watch the children, the best option for you is a nanny-housekeeper.

Little Ones UK offers various nanny and housekeeping positions for which candidates are welcome to apply:

  • After school nanny is typically a part-time live-out position, which ideally helps parents take care of their children after school hours.
  • Au pairs are commonly friendly students providing live-in nanny or housekeeping jobs while they allow them to study in their given time. The au pair is generally treated as a member of the family that usually stays from 6 months to a year.
  • Full-time nanny who works for 40 hours or more to look after the children while doing light housekeeping related to the children duties, like cooking and laundry.
  • Part-time nanny who works for less than 40 hours to look after the children in a given schedule. Part-time nannies typically work for 2 to 3 days a week.
  • COVID-19 Temporary Nanny are on-call nannies who provide emergency and temporary childcare, and who will be happy to stay with your family until the situation returns to normal.
  • Nanny Housekeepers who ideally look after your children whilst maintaining the cleanliness of the household.

The Government, following the line of the previous guidance, has established that if you ‘provide paid-for childcare in a child’s home, you can go to your place of work‘. Many parents have been wondering if they can allow someone external of the family or someone who doesn’t live with them to come into their homes to help them while they are working. With the Coronavirus FAQs, the government has answered what parents have been asking since day 1 of the lockdown. This has given relief to many parents who are currently struggling to keep their everyday routine, juggling between work and schooling their children.

One of the big problems that parents are currently facing while being at home with their children is to be able to keep the balance between work and giving the necessary attention that their children need. It hasn’t been easy to keep children active during the whole day, and most parents feel guilty when they can’t spend quality time with their children during the lockdown, since they are still working from home.

One factor to consider during childcare & lockdown is that most of the schools are giving online classes, so parents are asking themselves how they can keep their children in front of a computer more than 6 hours a day, listening to the teacher and doing the school activities while they are talking with colleagues and having business phone-calls/video-calls. It’s for this that parents have been seeking help with looking after their children; however, they were not sure if they were allowed to bring someone new into the home.

It’s important to keep in mind that families with nannies need to follow the health & safety advice regarding travelling from one place to another, like keeping the necessary distance while travelling, washing their hands as soon as they arrive from the outside to a new home, and maintaining social distance as far as possible with those that are not under their direct care.

If the person who is looking after your children thinks that they might have coronavirus or they've been in close contact with someone who has it, they need to stay at home and avoid close contact with other people. The same applies if the family who is paying for the service thinks that a member of the family might have the virus, they should tell the childcarer not to come to visit the premises in order to prevent them running the risk of becoming infected.

Each family has different childcare needs. Some parents will not need help to look after their children during a normal situation, while other parents will need it, because of the kind of job that they have. It’s then when, as a parent, you need to analyse what kind of childcare will perfectly fit into your agenda while the social distancing rules are still being applied. Some questions that will help you to get the answer are: Do I need someone in a permanent or temporary capacity? Do I need someone Live-in or Live-out? Am I looking for a nanny to help me from morning to night or for a few days per week? Do I need a tutor, teacher or nanny?

Currently, families are looking for nannies with teaching experience, tutors or teachers to help their children while they are studying from home. Choosing someone to help you in a temporary capacity is one of the first options that families are taking while the social distancing measures are still in place. Families could hire someone to help from 9am to 3pm with school, or choose a nanny in full-time capacity to help with everything relating to their children.

It’s here that Little Ones Ltd comes on the scene; we have more than 15 years of experience matching families with the right nanny all around the United Kingdom and Overseas. The safety and comfort of our clients and their families is our priority, therefore, each of our candidates undergoes thorough vetting procedures, just like a person interviewed with our professional consultants, DBS or Police Check, reference checked, and with a Paediatric First Aid Certification.

Parents are always looking for the best for their children, even more so when it concerns who will be looking after them, either all day or after school while the parents are working. You will look for someone who is positive, funny and a pleasure to have around, but at the same time, an authority figure for your children, someone who will help your children to develop their educational and social skills, and much more.

Our consultants will make sure to find the best option for your children and your family while the social distancing rules apply. Our main goal is to help families who need help during the Covid-19 lockdown. At Little Ones, our expert consultants will help you in your search for a Nanny, Au Pair, Governess, Tutor, or any house staff as soon as you need, in a permanent or temporary capacity.

We are providing a letter to each of our candidates that should be accepted as proof of key worker status, which needs to be used in combination with a valid photo ID. If you are interested in obtaining this letter, we will be more than happy to send it over to you by email; you can contact us on

We at Little Ones have compiled a list of FAQs from parents. We understand how overwhelming the situation can be that the country is going through, which is why Little Ones will remain open and working for each of the families & candidates who have contacted us and will contact us. Please find our FAQs here.

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