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Setting up as a private tutor

Discussion in 'Private tutors' started by rachel3010, Feb 12, 2019.

  1. rachel3010

    rachel3010 New commenter

    Hello lovely people, I wonder if I could have the benefit of your experience in this area please?

    I have taught primary for 11 years, across ks2, and am interested in picking up some private tutoring on the side, but I'm not sure how I would go about starting this - do I need to join an agency? What is the deal?

    I'm thinking the bulk of the demand in the primary age range will be based around y6 SATs, which is fine as this is a year group I have taught in, and I have experience of the new (post 2016) style SATs, which I'm hoping will be an advantage to me, but even saying this, is there much call for primary phase tutors outside of London?

    I'd be really grateful for any advice anyone can offer with regards to what my next steps might be and would love to hear your personal experiences! Any recommendations for websites/agencies you have used?

    Thank you in advance!
  2. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Deals involve an exchange, Rachel. What is the advice of experienced professional tutors worth to you?
  3. NQT08

    NQT08 Occasional commenter

    Why do you always have to be so awkward?
    Do you not realise that the whole purpose of this site is so people can support and advise each other?
  4. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    There is nothing awkward about my realism.

    Let us suppose that you had a successful tutoring practice and every other week someone knocks on your door asking for advice from the benefit of your hard won experience as to how they could set up their own successful tutoring practice a few streets over. How would you respond?
  5. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    Why are you a member of this page Vince? What do you use it for?
  6. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    In response to the OP...
    Tutor hunt
    First tutors
    UK tutors
    My own Facebook page
    Word of mouth once you are established

    Best of luck
  7. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    I am not a member of this page.
  8. NQT08

    NQT08 Occasional commenter

    Yes you are. If you weren't you wouldn't be able to comment.
  9. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    No, I am a member of the TES Community, not some random page.
  10. briancant

    briancant Occasional commenter

    The money in the age group you mention is in the eleven-plus. Some tutors are charging a fortune for this.

    I agree with the websites langteacher has listed but would add tutorful. I have found them to be very good. Many teachers take offence at their commission set at 25% initially but I just adjusted my hourly rate to take that into account.
  11. gainly

    gainly Star commenter

    I agree with Brian about the eleven plus but of course it depends if you live in an area where there are grammar schools.

    I think primary tutors in London face a lot of competition from all the tuition centres but have no idea about the demand elsewhere. You might get some pupils by joining an agency although they would charge commission. I think most people now search on line, so register with the websites langteacher suggests.

    I generally try to be helpful when I can. It is unlikely that posters asking for advice will be in competition with me. They would have to be teaching the same subjects and live within a few miles.
  12. SayItLikeItIs

    SayItLikeItIs Occasional commenter

    There are some tutors who advertise their SATs tuition groups on my local FB community group. They usually preface with "Just two spaces left ...". I've no idea how successful they are. Their appeal would be to parents who think SATs results reflect on their child rather than on their child's school. I also seen independent tutors advertise. Sometimes someone asks for a recommendation, and the same few names come up again and again. Once you have kick-started, you should be fine.
  13. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    Hi Rachel

    And good luck. I would add chidcare.co.uk and NetMums to the list. You could also walk around and drop leaflets into people's homes and do an ad in the local newspaper.

    Also as mentioned the 11 plus is a market but in areas where there are grammar schools. The whole tutoring market is dominated by students, many as young as Year 12s and if I remember rightly, I remember reading that the private tutoring market is around half a million tutors. Most private tutors are not qualified teachers and a lot of the students who are tutoring, some of whom are doing A levels and tutoring GCSEs, or doing their degrees and tutoring A levels are charging more than qualified teachers, teaching their subject specialism. And then you have the students charging as little as £8 an hour to tutor A level.

    Most parents do not understand the importance of using a qualified teacher and there is also the hassle of travelling to and from the parental homes which most parents prefer.

    Because students with just their GCSEs are teaching the same GCSEs they passed last summer, you can imagine how saturated the 11 plus and primary market is. So make sure to put into your profile just what being a tutor with QTS means, especially when tutoring students with SEND.

    And good luck!:)
  14. doctoryes

    doctoryes Occasional commenter

    If you have selective independent schools in your area, tutoring for their entrance exams can be quite lucrative.
    As stated above if you have any experience with additional needs e.g. dyslexia or dyspraxia then many parents seek extra help for children with these conditions.
  15. suzette

    suzette Occasional commenter

    I must be the exception to the rule then!!! I'm middle aged, qualified, DBS checked, been tutoring for a number of years, it's now become my full time job/company & love tutoring!!!

    Contrary to popular belief, most tutors aren't just youngsters 'doing their 'A' levels/or just doing it from an inexperienced point of view. I personally do it to try & help make a difference in a student's life. I get really cheesed off when tutors get such a bad press, stereo-typed as some money grabbing, stealing-jobs from teachers type of person. We are just ordinary people who do a job. I'm extremely passionate about being a tutor, so let's cut the tutor bashing. I believe we can all rub along together without fear & judgement.
    fiona1_wilder likes this.
  16. briancant

    briancant Occasional commenter

    I've never heard any of this 'tutor bashing' you talk about or negative stereo-typing. Where are you getting this 'negativity' from?
  17. gainly

    gainly Star commenter

    I think Suzette is referring to the post by cat befriender.
    There are certainly some students claiming to be tutors and I was rather shocked a few years ago to find two students who I was tutoring for A level were giving GCSE tuition. I certainly wouldn't say students dominate the market. I've been tutoring full time for many years and always have as many students as I want, usually more.
  18. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    If you look on some of the websites I mention, you will find a lot of students who are tutoring up to A levels. Most of the tuition centres in my area are staffed by students (usually sixth form and undergraduate students) earning £8 to £10 an hour, cash in hand. Yes, there are graduates, who are not state qualified teachers, tutoring, that is why if you have QTS and are marketing yourself, promote what having QTS means i.e. you have succeeded in gaining the standards the DfE requires, you have strategies for teaching SEND including G&T, you have probably undertaken a Master module in some aspect of Educational research and you are committed to CPD. Also explain that there are tutors who haven't got QTS, but may have a Degree, Masters and/or PhD but they are technically classified as unqualified teachers by the DfE. That is the way the system works.

    Gaining QTS for many of us meant forking out a fee. So if we have it, and we want to promote it, it is our prerogative. It is an additional postgraduate qualification.

    Tutors who are not qualified teachers, can of course do their own independent research and of course have the same or superior subject knowledge, but having QTS means that many other issues have been covered. A lady rang me up recently looking for a tutor and stated all she could find were students and I did a search in my postcode, and yes, that's what was there. There was one sixth former and her profile stated something along the line of, 'I tutor to GCSE in every subject I passed at GCSE,' and she was charging £35 an hour!

    It depends on where you live, and what you have to offer.

    When undertaking CPD a few years ago at a university, I came across a student teacher who was 59. He had a tutoring business and stated that parents were getting savvy and that having QTS would be to his advantage as he wanted to set up a tuition centre. He didn't want to teach in schools and knew that when he hit 75, he wouldn't have to pay back the student loan, so he felt doing it was a good investment in his time and of course he learnt something from it.
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
  19. briancant

    briancant Occasional commenter

    I don't think pointing out that a lot of tutors are students themselves is really bashing tutors or stereo-typing them in any way. What parents or students want varies but on the whole I feel they look for good subject knowledge and up to date knowledge of the exam system. When I taught we often used sixth form prefects to support lower school maths lessons. A lot of my trade comes from parents who feel their children have teachers who aren't qualified to teach maths (QTS yes, maths knowledge no).
  20. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    @briancant I agree you can have QTS and not have the relevant subject knowledge, but the best scenario would be to have both. BTW, if you have the Maths specialism and you haven't got QTS, you could be paid by the DfE to get it. Last time I looked it was up to £32,000 in bursaries to train!

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