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Tuition has been quietly growing in the background of the education system. Recent studies have suggested that there are as many tutors as there are teachers. Others have highlighted the fact that many parents are choosing between private schooling and private tuition. Each has their place, their merits and their disadvantages, but they have very different price tags.

What is Tutoring?

In the most basic sense a tutor is a teacher who gives private lessons. However, this simplified explanation gives little credence to the often multi-dimensional approach taken by passionate and well-trained tutors.

A tutor can be described as many things including someone who helps students learn to improve their own strategies of learning to help them grow their independence. Tutoring is also thought of as the ability to help students help themselves by giving them skills and strategies to become independent learners.

Tutoring is:

Assessing a student’s abilities to determine their strengths and weaknesses

Liaising with parents, teachers and the student themselves to create an individual program

Developing a child’s identified weaknesses

Instilling self-confidence by giving a child opportunity to succeed

Giving them strategies to cope under examination conditions

Using their strengths to improve their independence as learners

A Tutor’s Aim

Tuition is synonymous with the concepts of coaching, guidance and training. A tutor must tailor their practice to suit the individual needs of the student. For some students it needs to be a multi-faceted approach. Any tutor worth their salt will take the time to evaluate, assess and appraise a student’s needs. There is never a one size fits all solution and a tutor will aim to administer a program that not only develops understanding, but grows a child’s sense of independence and self-confidence.

Tutoring, like teaching, should be aimed at the best interest of the child. Tuition must complement the teaching practices a child receives at their school and in this vein work together to bring about change and improvement.

When Should I Invest in a Tutor?

In general terms tuition is ideally sought when one or more of three issues present themselves in a child’s schooling life:

  1. The child has been identified as having special educational needs such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, ESL etc
  2. A student has missed stages of their education due to illness, stints abroad with their families or general misunderstanding
  3. New subject areas, topics or skills require reinforcement by a student to clarify and cement

There is no right or wrong age to begin seeking tuition for your child. Tutors, like teachers, have a speciality and you will be able to find one who has the experience and knowledge to give assistance for whatever stage your child is at.

Tuition does take co-operation between all concerned parties; child, parents, teachers, so if you are considering hiring a tutor for your child make sure you get everyone on board first. The more support everyone can give to the choice the better outcomes you will see as a result.