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Starting a Tutoring Company

Discussion in 'Private tutors' started by Yasin22, Jun 26, 2014.

  1. Yasin22

    Yasin22 New commenter

    Hi all,

    I am a primary school teacher and have been teaching for 6 years. I want to start my own tuition company and have started the process already by tutoring a few small groups of kids in my spare time and applying for a trademark for my company name etc...

    Eventually (if all goes well) I will leave full time teaching and probably rent a premises or buy a house and convert it into a few classrooms.

    My plan is to hire tutors to teach KS3, GCSE and A'Level subjects eventually.

    Here are my dilemmas:

    1) What happens if a tutor I hire calls in sick? Do I cancel the session or is there another option?

    2) What is stopping tutors that I hire from taking the kids they have found from my company and begin tutoring them privately, consequently taking them away from my company?

    3) Do I simply let tutors create their own plans and resources or should I have some sort of set structure in place for them to follow?

    I feel confident doing it on my own, but when it comes to hiring others I need to be sure I am fully prepared.

    Any advice would be really appreciated.

  2. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    To try to address your questions

    1) If the tutor is sick as a one off am sure it could be rearranged or just missed once. Who do you envisage they are going to call if they are sick? I would call the student directly and would expect them to do the same. I don't see the need to involve a third party.

    2) Nothing. As a tutor I would not even register with a company that charges me for me doing the work. A finders' fee is fair enough but no way am I parting with a portion of my earnings each lesson. I advertise through first tutors, uk tutors and tutor hunt and these work on a finders' fee basis

    3) How would you create a structure? People use tutors for no end of reasons and I would imagine that most tutors tailor their lessons to the needs of the individual student. Unless you are going to meet regularly with every student I don't see how you could do this

    I hope this helps and it may not be what you want to hear but I do not see this as a viable business if you are looking to charge a regular fee from tutors. I hope I have understood that correctly
  3. Yasin22

    Yasin22 New commenter

    Thanks for the reply.

    To be more specific, what I am planning on doing is renting a commercial premises and running tutorial sessions with groups of up to 6 children at a time. I would then employ tutors to tutor these groups in the business premises. I would find the students through advertising etc. So a similar set up to Kumon but my own brand. Does this make more sense?
  4. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    ah, you mean a tuition centre. there are several posts on here about these. I don't work in one so not sure about the set up but if you do a search you should find what you are looking for
  5. maurice-r

    maurice-r Established commenter

    Yasin. Why would tutors want you to be their boss and take a cut of their earnings? I get more business than I can handle through two websites. You're not experienced enough, anyway. You want to be a businessman and exploit other teachers' talents. Try to make an honest living instead. Stay in school and get better at your profession.
  6. Georginalouise

    Georginalouise New commenter

    Good tutors do not generally work in tuition centres. They don't need to.
  7. decj

    decj New commenter

    I agree with naurice and Georginelouise, As a private tutor I have more than enough work, but I'm sure that's because I have 20 years of teaching experience behind me.
  8. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    From personal experience, I would have to agree with the last few posters. Why on earth would I work for less at a tuition centre, along with the inconvenience of travelling. Students, that I teach on a one-to-one basis, come to me.
  9. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    Wow. Harsh. I also had plenty of business as a home tutor, but then started a tuition centre. I don't take a cut of any tutor's earnings, I pay them above what they would get going out to houses. Why do they work with me? Because they are absolutely guaranteed work, they don't have to source it themselves, they don't have to plan or provide resources, they like the atmosphere, they can get as many additional sessions as they like all in the one place, they get paid even if a pupil doesn't turn up.... there are many advantages and disadvantages, and tutors decide what works for them. Also, I'm not their boss in that I don't need to tell them what to do, they are self employed and subcontracting with me.

    Yasin, don't be put off by negative comments - it is a business model that works, and it's not exploiting others. But be prepared for a tough learning curve. Maurice is right that you are actually intending to be a business person, rather than a teacher, and that can be a tough haul. You will have to make a lot of mistakes along the way - but I totally love what I'm doing now.
  10. maurice-r

    maurice-r Established commenter

    So what's in it for you, Persiankat? Do you do it for "love"? Pull the other one.
  11. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    Maurice, are you kiddin on?

    I do love it! I can support myself - still teaching a couple of days a week, and I'm still not making as much as I did full time, but I can pay mortgage. I have 3 days at home with my wee girl. I can commit to days away during the week doing fun stuff and I'm involved with my wee girl's nursery - all of which would be impossible as a full time teacher. When I do planning, development and marking for my business, it feels so much more meaningful to me because it's my own work - I always worked hard for my pupils but did 10 years in a school where my hard work was entirely unappreciated (and so was everyone else's - it wasn't personal, just poor management)! Since running the business I've developed a new confidence that has transferred into my school life as well - I'm now on supply and actually enjoy that far more because I just feel so much better about my life. There is a huge benefit to being captain of your own ship! And, like any business, the longer you hang in the more you build up customers - so I always hope to get to the point where I'm able to take the same sort of wage I had when teaching.
  12. maurice-r

    maurice-r Established commenter


    How much do you charge the parents and how much do your tutors get, the difference being your cut, of course?
  13. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    I am sure it may suit some but I would not like to teach from a ready made plan, I prefer to do my own. How many are in the groups on average and what do you pay the tutors?
  14. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    Never mind whether it's beneficial for tutors, tutoring centres are a really bad deal for kids. Sometimes they may seem cheaper, but when you pro-rata the time each kid gets one-on-one tuition wins every time. Tuition centres are parasitic. They reduce the work available for tutors, but give the kids less.
  15. Georginalouise

    Georginalouise New commenter

    1. I love being a private tutor and I love being my own boss - but I'm not a charity and I don't do it for free.

    2. As a private tutor, I work to the needs of an individual student. Even though I start the session with a lesson plan, I am always prepared to throw that plan out of the window and push the lesson up or down a couple of notches according to ability and subject knowledge. I've a bank of resources to hand and I can easily access more suitable tasks etc if a session isn't particularly working out.

    3. I am completely independent and I always ask how new clients have found me. It is usually by recommendation, but sometimes they've found me on the internet via my website, and their reason for contacting me is that I am not a tuition centre - and often they have already had a bad experience with one.
  16. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    Well, Maurice,I can see what you're getting at here, you are suggesting I'm somehow ripping tutors off, or otherwise causing some sort of a problem for good, honest, hardworking tutors like yourself.

    All I will say is that the tutors that work with me know what I'm getting out of it and are happy, also they choose to work with me. The parents that pay me are very happy with the service I provide. Also I have never yet taken more than any of the other tutors. As for what I charge and pay out - surely you can figure that out for yourself through looking at the pricing structure of any tuition centre.

    I totally get why some tutors are pretty much against tuition centres, and I don't need to defend myself on that score - I've put in enough hard work, time and money into my own profession to feel comfortable with what I'm doing. Sorry if you feel it somehow denigrates what you do - but you're attacking the wrong person. The grass is not always greener on the other side, and my business experience has been gained through hard work and effort - in the same way yours has, I'm sure.
  17. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    You are absolutely right Georgina, I have had enquiries in the past where as soon as I explain it's a centre they tell me they DON'T want that! And where I can, I refer these folk on to tutors I know who will go out to the house. I never try to pull the wool over anyone's eyes - what's the point? But there are some parents that prefer centres, and like you, I work very hard to make sure my customers get the service they pay for. [​IMG]
  18. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    We never teach to a ready made plan. We prefer to have the pupil direct us according to what they are doing in school. I have groups of 3 in each session. And what I pay my tutors is private! [​IMG]
  19. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    Yeah, most of us like to keep what we are not that proud of private.
  20. persiankat

    persiankat New commenter

    Like the offensive cover of your book?

    Actually, it's private because it's an agreement between myself and other people. And it's part of my business strategy. And I make no apologies for running a good business where everyone involved is happy with the agreement. And I'm very proud of my centre - I just don't feel like I should be goaded into saying things on here that is nobody else's business. [​IMG]

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