FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
For Sennies (SEN Nannies/Teacher's/Specialist's/ Carers)
How do I apply to become a Sennie?
Follow our Step by step guide for full details!
All 'Sennie(s)' are subject to a comprehensive background check including but not limited to:
An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring service (DBS)check (Must be on the update service or willing to purchase a new certificate an join if offered employment through a SENNIES introduction.
A minimum of 2 professional references (related to SEN and/or Childcare)
Proof of identity
Right to work in the UK
We collect and share all necessary identification documents with your Employer (Family/Client), but it is important that the 'Sennie' provide the 'Family/Client' with physical documents so they can collects their own copies.
How much does it cost to join SENNIES?
It is FREE to register as a Sennie. All we ask is that you abide by our Code of Conduct when introduced to a Family through SENNIES. By completing our application form you hereby agree to abide by our T&C's and Code of Conduct.
We also offer Free online training to all registered Sennies from understanding Autism, Manual handling, Peadiatric First Aid and much more.
How much will I get paid as a Sennie?
All roles through SENNIES are advertised in gross pay. Click here for more information regarding 'Gross VS Net' Pay.
Permanent Full-Time Positions:
Part-Time (up to 20 hours per week): £17 - £25 gross per hour
Full-Time (30 hours or more): £15 - £20 gross per hour
Live-In Positions: £15 or more gross per hour
SEN Specialist: Rates vary
For all permanent full-time roles, you will be directly employed by a family who assumes employer responsibilities, allowing you to retain 100% of your wage!
The family determines the rate for these positions.
We will enroll you with our employment partner and place you directly into part-time roles. You will complete a monthly timesheet and be fully employed by our employment partner.
SENNIES determines your rate for these positions based on your experience, with rates starting at £17 per hour.
Every job description will clearly state the pay for the role, as well as essential and desirable qualities.
Does SENNIES become my Employer
and who pays my wages?
At present SENNIES does not employ anyone as we are an introduction agency. You will be paid by your employer directly which will either be the family or our employment partner
In most cases (99%), the payment for full-time roles is handled by the Family/Client. However, please note that for certain positions, the payment may be arranged directly through the Family's/Client's local council. We will inform you if this is the case when you apply for a specific role.
For part-time positions, you will be employed and compensated by our employment partner. They will also offer additional benefits such as free accredited training, SSP (Statutory Sick Pay), holiday pay, maternity pay, and other perks that come with full-employment status.
Why should I register with SENNIES
to find my next SEN Childcare role?
SENNIES opened in to the public in January 2020 and is already the leading Special Educational Needs childcare introduction service in the UK.
At SENNIES, our primary goal is to assist families and clients in finding exceptional specialist childcare services at affordable rates. Unlike many other agencies, we do not charge commission fees to our Sennies. Instead, we offer transparent pricing by either charging a placement fee or including our fee and employment costs in the hourly rate. This approach ensures that our Sennies are fairly compensated for their expertise and dedication. Additionally, we provide free training opportunities to all of our registered Sennies, allowing them to continually enhance their skills. We strive to make quality childcare accessible and affordable, while maintaining the highest standards of service.
SENNIES is run by a dedicated team of neurodivergent ‘Super Sennies’ who have decades of professional and personal experience within Special Educational Needs in both the private care and educational sectors.
We understand how frustrating it can be to lose money due to agency fees/commission, so decided to change that as well as the price families/clients pay!
Once a Sennie is placed, we offer training and support for our Sennies as well as our family's/client's. We care about the success of every single placement! Don't just take our word for it, check out our incredible Trustpilot Reviews here!
How long is each contract?
All permanent roles require a minimum commitment of 1 year, however consistency is key so we hope that all of our Sennies are able to stay long term.
Full-Time: All full-time positions require a minimum commitment of 1 year (52 weeks).
Part-Time: Ideally, we prefer a minimum commitment of 1 academic year for part-time roles, working on a term-time only contract (39 weeks per year). Holiday pay is included in your hourly rate, or alternatively, you have the option to accumulate it and receive payment during non-working weeks. However, there may be opportunities for overtime during holidays if necessary.
In the rare event that a temporary SENNIES placement arises (as we only consider temporary roles on a case-by-case basis), the contract duration will be clearly stated in the job description.
What level of experience do I need to have
to register with SENNIES?
We are a small but dedicated team and therefore require a registration fee before we begin any search. This is to ensure we can dedicate our time to those serious about finding quality SEN Childcare.
As an introduction agency we are looking for Sennies with a wide variety of experience which includes but is not limited to:
Teaching assistants / SEN 1:1's
Graduates and Students (Studies relating to SEN and/or childcare)
We ask that all Sennies have at least 2 years of experience in SEN childcare including a sole charge childcare role.
How long until I know if I have been invited
for an interview?
To ensure we can submit all suitable Sennies to all roles, we are unable to get in touch with those who are unsuccessful in gaining an interview.
Families do not always let us know who they do not want to meet with and sometimes want to meet with or see other candidates first before moving forward with the interview, so we are unable to provide feedback or a result unless invited for an interview.
Once you have been introduced to a family, we will keep in touch for prep calls and to let you know the result of each interview/trial along the way.
If you have applied for a part-time role, you will only need to interview with SENNIES. We will personally select the candidate and place them directly into a suitable role.
How long will it take to find me a job through SENNIES?
As we are an introduction agency, we cannot guarantee work.
After you have completed the registration process, we will actively submit your profile for all the roles that align with your interests and qualifications. The decision to meet and invite you for a trial will be made by the family/client. For part-time positions, you will only need to interview with SENNIES as we handle the selection process and directly place candidates into suitable roles.
Are trials through SENNIES paid?
Yes, all trials are paid at £10 per hour and you should invoice the family/client directly following a trial.
If you would like SENNIES to collect payment on your behalf there is £10 admin fee.
Can you help me obtain an enhanced DBS?
Yes we can! An enhanced DBS costs £60.40 in total through SENNIES which includes a £10 Admin fee.
If you are registering as a Sennie or if you are already a Sennie and require a new Enhanced DBS check, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, it is important to sign up for the update service as soon as you receive your certificate.
I am not on the DBS update system, can I still accept a role through SENNIES?
Although we can assist you with the registration process for our roles, it is essential that if you accept a position through SENNIES, you are enrolled in the DBS update service. If you are not already a member, you will be required to obtain a new DBS check and join the update service within 14 days of receiving your certificate, prior to your start date.
Being on the DBS update service allows your employer to check your DBS status at any point during your employment. If you are not enrolled in the update service, your DBS clearance is valid only up until the day it was issued. This means that any criminal activities committed after that day would go unnoticed by your employer without the update service.
For more detailed information, please see here.
Do you help with negotiations and contracts
if offered a role?
The short answer is YES!
At SENNIES, we are dedicated to providing comprehensive support to our candidates in securing full-time employment. Our experienced team is available to assist you throughout your journey, offering guidance and advice during contract negotiations with your prospective employer. While we recommend using our draft contract, we understand that you may prefer to use your own. If you have any uncertainties or would like us to review specific sections of your contract on your behalf, simply send them to us, and we will provide the necessary assistance.
For part-time positions, salaries are predetermined based on your experience and qualifications. There is no negotiation on the salary offered. It is important to note that your contract will be directly our employment partner, not with the family you will be providing care for. However, you will be required to sign the SENNIES agreement and code of conduct. The family, on the other hand, will have a separate contract with SENNIES outlining the terms and conditions of the engagement. We facilitate the employment process, ensuring all parties are protected, and the employment relationship runs smoothly.
Unless you choose to be self-employed for personal reasons or you take on one of our holiday roles though our Scott Dunn partnership, standard full and part-time roles are provided as fully employed (PAYE), either through the family as your employer or through our employment partner. This ensures that you are eligible to receive Statutory Sick Pay (SSP), holiday pay, maternity pay, pension contributions, and all other benefits as required by UK law, provided you meet the qualifying criteria.
When should I hand in my notice at my current job, if offered a role through a SENNIES introduction?
The decision is entirely yours, but we strongly advise against submitting your notice until you have received and accepted an offer letter from the family/client. This offer letter will serve as a temporary contract until the formal agreement is finalized.
What is expected from me as a Sennie in terms of my day to day duties?
Duties vary depending on the family and the care required for the child(ren) you are caring for and will be detailed in the job description for each role.
Duties can include but are not limited to:
School pick up / drop off
Booking attending appointments with the children (where appropriate)
Arranging and/or attending playdates
Creating a visual timetable for the family based on the child's needs
Continuing therapies/interventions as set our by the family and/or their specialists
Tidy up after themselves and the children
Light PA or Housekeeping duties related to the children and/or family (if a role requires more than light duties, the role will be titled Sennie/PA or Sennie/Housekeeper so we can be sure to only introduce interested and suitable Sennies
Plan and attend day trips / school holiday activities
Plan/cook healthy meals
Bath time and bed time routine
Prepare visual aids for your child/children
Attend a family holiday
Join a child at an activity camp
Liaising with other professional involved in the child(ren's) health care and education
Do you sponsor Sennies from other countries?
At SENNIES we cannot register someone as a ‘Sennie’ if they are an international applicant who has not been in the U.K for a minimum of 6 months, as this means we cannot complete all necessary background checks.
Calls and emails made outside of our office hours will be picked up the following day. (Opening hours: Monday - Friday: 9am - 5.00pm)
Any urgent communications outside of these times must be made directly with the Sennie you have chosen to interview/trial.
Please be aware that the majority of childcarers are signed up to multiple agencies and not exclusively to SENNIES, therefore we cannot guarantee that a Sennie will not take other roles offered by another agency during your interview process. We only allow our Sennies to trial for 1 role at a time to avoid this type of disappointment.
The ‘SENNIES search’ runs for 8 weeks* and is offered as an ‘introductory service’, therefore we do not employ anyone but make it our priority to only introduce you to suitable Sennies. If you feel a Sennie is not suited to your family’s needs, please give us detailed feedback, so we can be sure to only send you suitable Sennies moving forward. *8 weeks is offered as standard as this is usually a sufficient amount of time to procure and process a suitable ‘Sennie’. We always aim to place within 4 weeks where possible and can extend this time when needed to ensure we meet our mutual goal.