Is Private Tuition Widening The Gap In Attainment?
Every young person has subjects they thrive in, and other subjects that are not so easy for them to get to understand. We all know that high-quality private tutoring can be of great assistance when trying to improve their grades in these subjects.
With this being known, over the past few years, private tuition has exponentially grown in popularity as a way of improving grades. However, this has also had a negative effect on young people from the lowest income homes as they continue to find themselves attaining grades much lower than to their peers from the highest income homes.
And unfortunately, we also live in a world where private schools thrive with state-of-the-art facilities while state schools continue to struggle with budget cuts, a teacher retention crisis and large classroom sizes, which makes it nearly impossible for young people from lower income homes to compete with their peers from higher-income homes.
The numerous programmes to improve performance
What makes the gap in attainment between state school students and independent schools even wider, is the ease at which a typical student from a wealthier home can access high-quality private tuition and coaching programmes to help boost their grades, build study skills, improve their mindset and prepare for interviews to get into top universities.
All you need to do is a simple search in google for “Oxbridge preparation courses” and you’ll find hundreds of organisations that cater to the needs of wealthier pupils that are gunning for Oxbridge. They have the advantage of providing skilled professionals to support students preparing for Oxbridge & Russell Group universities in the UK.
You don’t have to attend these courses to get into the universities, but from what can be seen by their success rate, it would be safe to say that the courses have an effect on each pupil’s confidence and motivation, ultimately giving these students an advantage over their peers. It is also clear that the students who attend these programmes tend to be wealthier than your average state school student which reveals why the top universities are filled with students from wealthier backgrounds.
What’s available to students from lower income homes?
For your typical student from a lower-income home, these types of services are not locally available, not available in their school or simply not affordable. Moreover, most parents are not even aware of the additional support that these students need.
Having said this, there are still quite a few charitable organisations and top universities that run programmes to encourage children from lower-income homes to apply to their universities. The programmes will support and coach students from lower income homes, but the reality is that these courses are highly competitive and you’ll need to show evidence of having a very low income, going to one of their priority schools and students will need to have achieved very high grades in order to get in.
There is a strong case for affordable high-quality tuition
Tutoring programmes are very important for students who need help with a difficult subject, but also for those that need extra general support and help with exams and study skills. A private tutor can also make the difference between gaining the grades necessary for the future or falling short and missing out on future opportunities.
Private tutoring can benefit any young person, including those:
- Who are not achieving the grades they expect or have been predicted due to struggles at school or at home
- Who are not receiving the level of support necessary in school, whether in specific subjects or in general
- Who, for any reason, have had to take an extended period of time away from their studies
- Who want to focus further on a specific subject that they may not necessarily be struggling with, but desire to study at university and need to secure high grades to ensure this is possible.
How can we narrow the attainment gap
There are many ways to narrow the attainment gap, but one sure way is to help young people from low-income homes to receive the same support provided to those from wealthier homes.
For your child, there are many new and innovative programmes that are seeking to narrow this gap by providing high-quality tutoring and other educational programmes at an affordable rate.
The GT Scholars Programme one such programme that offers high-quality one-to-one tutoring at an affordable rate. We also offer a number of free places every term. Our programmes provide more than just private tuition – it also includes mentoring sessions, enrichment days, and skill-building workshops to help your child not only with their studies but also with developing life skills and confidence. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.
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