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Starting up tutoring business

Discussion in 'Private tutors' started by EllieP19, Feb 21, 2016.

  1. EllieP19

    EllieP19 New commenter

    So I posted a while ago that I was seriously thinking of giving up primary teaching after 15 years. I am currently a deputy headteacher and have thoroughly enjoyed teaching but am now in a position where I am not enjoying the endless (and to me pointless!) extra work that is now apparently necessary. I have unfortunately become very disillusioned and have decided to finish in August.

    Although sad it is the right decision for myself and my family. I have started thinking of alternatives and apart from supporting my husband in house renovations, we have been doing this as an extra/hobby for the past couple of years I am thinking of starting my own tutoring business.

    This would be a small business but I plan on tutoring in groups of 3-4 children. There is currently a similar business set up in the town I live which has been going for 12 years and is doing extremely well. They have 120 students on the books at present and are full. I did contemplate going to work at this establishment but on speaking to the owner it started me thinking 'hang on a minute I could do this myself!' Now my husband and I have been contemplating starting a business of our own for many years and I really think it could be a viable venture, however I wonder if I am being a little unrealistic. Now I am quite a grounded, sensible person so understand there is a lot of work in starting up a new business and so on but I feel I would thoroughly enjoy using my experience to support pupils (which is what I love) without all the bureaucracy of schools nowadays.

    I'm also wondering whether it would be better to start off with 1-1 tutoring to build up a client base, however with this would people get used to 1-1 and not want to transfer to small groups afterwards. I would be looking to tutor ages 6-14 in the first instance.

    Are there any current tutors who could give me some advice in starting up please? Thank you for any advice or opinions x
    helen1159 likes this.
  2. Ian1983

    Ian1983 Occasional commenter

    I'm also wondering whether it would be better to start off with 1-1 tutoring to build up a client base

    Yes I would do.

    Why not try dipping your toe in (so to speak) with some 1 to 1...........................a few local adverts, basic website, resources that you'll already have from your day job..............................and just see how it goes.

    After a while, if things are going well and you're building up a good local reputation, you could then think about expanding to the sort of thing the other local company have (office premises, other staff on the books etc etc)

    install likes this.
  3. langteacher

    langteacher Occasional commenter

    My website does not actually bring in much business but my facebook page gets me quite a bit and costs me nothing
    install and Landofla like this.
  4. EllieP19

    EllieP19 New commenter

    Yes I am thinking of setting up a Facebook page for the business. If I advertise for children between 6-14 would this be ok? I understand there is a high proportion of GCSEs and a level pupils but are there enough aged between 6-14?
  5. Ian1983

    Ian1983 Occasional commenter

    Plenty of demand for the younger age groups in my experience. Personally I would advertise 'up to and including Key Stage 3' rather than '6 to 14' as a 14 year old (or even a 13 year old in year 9) may be onto the GCSE syllabus and it doesn't sound as though you want to tutor GCSE.

    As well as Facebook / website, I find that vehicle graphics are a very powerful form of advertising (although I appreciate you may not want your contact details on your car while you're still teaching in a school)
    install and Landofla like this.
  6. Grace100

    Grace100 New commenter

    Hi Ellie,
    Well done for making the decision to leave. I have taught maths secondary for 13 years and the workload just seems to increase. I saved up to cover me for 4 to 6 months and then resigned from my school last December. I really loved the school I was in, but my work life balance was immensely skewed. I started off with 121 tutoring six months before I resigned. I have just started a small group of 4 and hope to increase to 5 or 6. But I kept my initial student who I taught individually, it made sense to sacrifice the extra day. But tutoring is brilliant, I spend only a few hours a week teaching and I have a lot of time to do other things. I do not plan to go back into schools and the most I'll do is a few days of supply.
    If the government refuses to do anything about the level of workload and constant monitoring then they will continue to loose great teachers.
    All the best, I'm sure you'll get some students.
  7. EllieP19

    EllieP19 New commenter

    Thank you for your response Grace100, it's encouraging to know others have done a similar thing. I'm obviously nervous, however I know it is the best thing for myself and my family. It is just so demoralising, I thought teaching was something I would do all my life. However the job is becoming unrecognisable to the one I started out in just 15 years ago. It's very sad and I feel disillusioned and am becoming quite cynical! For me it is time to go as my heart isn't in it any longer and I cannot continue to implement things that are just a waste of time and totally against my education beliefs!
  8. EllieP19

    EllieP19 New commenter

    Can I ask are you tutoring at your own home or somewhere else? Also how are you advertising for new pupils. I understand these things take a while to establish so am trying not to worry too much. Like you, I have saved money to tide me over for a certain period, and am also thinking of doing day to day supply whilst the tutoring builds up.
  9. Grace100

    Grace100 New commenter

    Some of the parents had requested me to tutor their kids whilst I was teaching (so these are people in the community who know that I am a Maths Teacher), so I booked them and told them that I could not start until after i had resigned. Other parents approached me through recommendations. I am just hoping that I'll have more recommendations from my present parents.
    Yes I tutor at home, I don't want to spend money for renting at the moment. But I might do so as the business grows.
    lesleyjuk1 and install like this.
  10. superdupersenco

    superdupersenco New commenter

    Hi EllieP19

    How is your tutoring business growing? Did it take a while? I am thinking of doing the same thing tutoring mainly KS2 - any advice?

    Thanks in hopeful anticipation!
  11. sdm79

    sdm79 New commenter

    Hi. Not saying I am an expert but I started last November advertising my own Facebook page and then weekly posts in all the local Facebook pages for my areas. Started slow but gradually got a couple of students and then it went from there seems to work well I now have 15 students most weekly 1.1 tuition and this is on top of working full time. I generally go to their homes and occasionally they might come to mine. Don't have any need for a space to rent so my outgoings are virtually zero but getting 25-30 £ hour each student plus lots of free tea coffee and cakes. I found offering free intro meetings and every tenth lesson free is a nice way of drawing them in.
    theroom786 likes this.
  12. sjs_g

    sjs_g New commenter

    Hi Ellie, just wondering how your tutoring business is going? When I read you post it was as if it was written by me! Everything you said is exactly why I am leaving the profession this July. I have been building up my 1:1 tuition but also hoping to tutor small groups and get into the home ed community. Any advice aprreciated!

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