This story first appeared in the June edition Children and Young People Now magazine
We first heard about the catch-up tutoring through the news and thought it would be something worth investigating. When we approached Action Tutoring, we found out another local school had been working with them as well. They trusted the schools’ opinion and they gave a positive account so we decided to go for it. It seemed really good value for money – well worth the punt.
We made sure Action Tutoring was aligned with how they did things in school. The maths curriculum fitted closely and the charity’s aspirational approach also aligned.
Relationships are important and every interaction with Action Tutoring has been really positive. It’s the people within the organisation that make it what it is. Action Tutoring supports 20 Year 6 pupils and 20 Year 5 pupils. The tutoring was delivered in school initially, with the Year 6 group, but switched to online during lockdown and has continued with that format. Take-up from the pupils has been great for the duration of the programme.
We made sure to communicate the benefits of the tutoring to parents to show its value and show that the school was invested in their children. This really helped to get their buy-in and they have been really happy with it. Pupils seem to really like it too. School staff have also been positive about the provision.
It’s a bit too early to see the impact the tutoring has had on attainment and progress, however pupils have really enjoyed the sessions. They like having one dedicated person to work with, which they don’t get in the classroom. Action Tutoring will make a difference to their self-esteem as well and iron out any particular difficulties they have. There is real benefit in them having a chance to talk to an adult outside of their family and outside of the school. The tutors are very diverse, in backgrounds and ages, which is a positive too.
To make the tutoring work you have to commit. Build a relationship with the people who are delivering and do your bit from your end. Make sure you address any problems quickly so that everyone feels supported and have a view to overcome and remove any barriers.
We will continue to invest in tutoring and would like to see it integrated into school provision going forward.