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If you use a tutor, please answer this question...

(15 Posts)
Joeyhale Fri 27-Oct-17 22:21:36

My younger brother is getting ready for his GCSEs and we've hired a few private tutors. It seems to be like we are just spending money with no real way of knowing his problem areas or whether he's improving, the real answer will come in the summer at that may be too late. Is this an issue that others have had, if so how are you addressing it?

Cat0115 Sat 28-Oct-17 06:21:42

Ask the tutor or his teachers to contact one another. It is virtually impossible to find weak spots quicklyin an hour a week session. Read his reports and ecercise books from school. Teachers will be commenting (I hope!)on strong and weak points. What is your brother's motivation level? This will have a massive impact. As a tutor (and experienced teacher) I know this to be the most relevant factor in how well he progresses.

Cat0115 Sat 28-Oct-17 06:22:23


BenLui Sat 28-Oct-17 06:30:40

Surely he must be having class tests? He should see is grades improve. Homework scores should also improve.

I’d also expect the tutor to be doing past papers with him at some point. Scores should gradually improve in there.

lljkk Sat 28-Oct-17 06:59:17

Do you ask the tutors to identify his problem areas? If there have been are a few different tutors, how long does each one work with him before you give up on that tutor -- do you give the tutor long enough to get to know him? What do the tutors say when you ask what his problem areas are?

Joeyhale Sat 28-Oct-17 09:58:13

Thanks for this, as parents are you happy to just rely on the tutor saying that your child is improving or are you looking for other ways to see this?

BenLui Sun 29-Oct-17 01:38:17

I expect to see improvements in class graded assignments and class tests.

TeenTimesTwo Sun 29-Oct-17 19:32:54

If I were using a tutor for GCSEs I'd have employed them for specific subjects with specific issues, either to help with understanding and/or with exam technique.
I would expect my child at that age to know whether they were improving or not I think. Certainly if helping with exam technique I would expect to see improvement in class tests or homework.
I effectively tutored my DD1 for a number of her GCSEs and I knew exactly what we were working on improving.

ninaor1 Sun 29-Oct-17 20:02:14

I tutor... and every 8 weeks I test students and give them a grade based on the new levels 9-1. He/she should be doing that, otherwise how does he know what level he is working to. Many students are good in class, but find exams difficult. Do not wait, ask for mini tests and ask for the levels. He should set him targets.

SuperPug Sun 29-Oct-17 20:06:59

Hopefully, you're not using an agency that employ tutors without teaching qualifications. For the reformed GCSEs, you need qualified teachers who really know their stuff and go on courses for the relevant exam boards.

SuperPug Sun 29-Oct-17 20:09:01

The tutor needs to show you written work showing an improvement (most tutors would do this anyway?) and be testing against the current syllabus and limited spec assessment materials. An experienced teacher/tutor will be able to create more questions from these.

SuperPug Sun 29-Oct-17 20:11:24

Btw, I don't want that to come across as knocking parents who help their kids. I was in the same situation and it made a significant difference. I just hear some horror stories about certain agencies who employ friends / people from certain schools who have zero experience and do it for pin money, dropping the student like a hot potato when it suits them.

TheDonald Sun 29-Oct-17 20:13:49

My dd is y11 and is going to a tutor for English because last year she was getting 3/4 in her language mocks.

I have completely left it to her to talk to the tutor about where they should focus and I'm happy to keep paying for it for as long as she feels it is helping.

She's 16 next week and she needs to take some responsibility for her own education. If your db isn't going willingly and seeing the benefit for himself it's probably a waste of time and money.

bunerison Mon 30-Oct-17 10:32:30

It depends on the subject. DS has an english tutor and she goes through the set texts with him and they work on practice questions. He's aiming for a 7-9 so she's very exact as to what information he needs to convey to achieve the levels. She also works with him on building a bank of quotes and explanations for the texts.

HaHaHmm Mon 30-Oct-17 18:49:02

A tutor needs to do a baseline assessment of their tutees and report to you on their progress. As a teacher I don't mind providing information about set texts and syllabus to tutors but it isn't reasonable to expect the class teacher to liaise in detail with numerous tutors.

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