In last week’s blog, we discussed how private tuition has become a regular feature in our children’s education, with more than 40% of children in London having been privately tutored at some point. We were then interested to see The Guardian newspaper quoting similar sources and asking for people’s opinion of the impact of private tuition.
You can see the article published by The Guardian here.
Private tuition has been a thorny issue for many years and it may be that the increased profile in the media brings some of the views, opinions and facts to light at last.
The fact is that private tuition works (of course, that is subject to having the right and properly qualified tutor for your child). It’s also one of the most secret of activities. As we’ve reported before, there has been a strange stigma around private tuition for a very long time.
Parents may engage a tutor, but keep quiet about it for several reasons. One is that they may not wish their child to be viewed as lacking and conversely, not want to be seen as having ideas above their station, or being a pushy parent.
Yet another reason is about keeping the best to themselves. And when you stop to think about it, getting into the best schools is a competitive business, so it becomes quite understandable!
Everyone has an opinion on private tuition and of course, the various views will serve a specific purpose.
Public schools will often frown upon private tuition as the parents of their pupils are already paying high fees to ensure a desired outcome.
State schools are often not in favour because they prefer to see a level playing field. This begs the question of whether a level playing field ever truly exists. Pupils have very different experiences and educational inputs outside of the classroom. That single point alone significantly erodes the notion of equality.
In my personal experience as a tutor, the element that gets overlooked is the one to one connection that can and should develop between a top tutor and their students. My students receive a solid hour of one to one focus, development, mentoring and confidence building. This is something that’s both incredibly valuable and difficult to achieve in other circumstances.
At school, the student is one of many needs and simply may not get the attention they need. Equally, many homes are busy places with careers, siblings, schools and extracurricular activities all jockeying for position, time and attention.
None of this is to criticise. As a parent to 3 children myself, I know all too well the challenge of wearing many hats.
It’s simply my view that as a private tutor, I am able to give 100% focus to the student in our time together and this in turn delivers amazing outcomes. More than grades, my students gain a confidence which they carry into other areas of their lives, be it sport, music or some other endeavour.
In my opinion, and in the right hands, the impact of private tuition is priceless.