Could private tutoring be detrimental to your child’s future?

Could private tutoring be detrimental to your child’s future?

In the last ten years, the number of UK students receiving private tuition has increased from 18% to 25% and theories vary on whether this is a result of stretched resources in schools or a reduced trust in the school system.

Studies over the years have shown that private tuition, like that offered on the GT Scholars Programmes, can enhance a student’s performance in class. But ultimately, what works for one child doesn’t always work for another. So before following the trend it’s important to determine whether a private tutor could, in fact, be detrimental to your child’s future. 

Will private or group tuition support or discourage your child?

The biggest worry when considering after-school tuition is how it may affect your child’s relationship with their studies.

According to the Growth Mindset theory, some students have a fixed mindset where they believe that their intelligence is fixed. For a student that has a fixed mindset and is already doing quite well at school, the pressure of private tuition can end up giving the impression that they’re just not good enough.

The theory states that a child who believes intelligence is learned rather than fixed will benefit more from dedication and learning. But if a child has a fixed mindset (i.e. they believe their intelligence is fixed rather than something that can be developed) then hiring a tutor could negatively impact both their academic development and their self-esteem.

Of course, the right private tutor will always work to support a child’s learning in a way that will encourage them in the future. Sometimes it’s less a case of ‘will tutoring be detrimental’ and more a case of ‘which tutor will be more beneficial to my child’s future?’

Will after-school tuition negatively impact on other areas in your child’s life?

Another important factor to consider is research that has shown the positive influence of extra-curricular activities on a student’s grade. Therefore, care should be taken when increasing time spent on studies of core subjects like Maths, Science and English and reducing time spent creatively outside the classroom.

In addition to this is the negative impact of a child using a tutor as a tool for their grades, rather than as a support for their learning. Not only can this leave the child dependant on having a tutor to perform in the classroom, it may also lead to struggles later in life. There is little sense in tutoring a student to achieve entrance to a top University if they will continue to need constant private tuition once there.

Overall, the benefits of private and group tuition for a child with a growth mindset will benefit your child’s future. This is especially true if the tutoring programme you choose has an emphasis on supporting independent learning and understands the need to improve a child’s motivation to learn, as well their grades. The final decision should always rest with the student’s personal goals, not just those of their parents.

The GT Scholars Programme is an after-school programme that focuses on growth mindset. The programme includes tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16.

Our goal is to help young people achieve excellent grades, get into top universities and enter competitive careers. To register your interest in the GT Scholars Programme visit www.gtscholars.org/register-your-interest  

Katie Dawes
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