Once again, the government has changed the way GCSE exams are administered and graded. Those taking their English GCSEs in 2016 will be the last to have controlled assessments included in their final marks, and those now in year 10 or below are facing the new standards.
Despite these changes, one thing remains: the need for good English is important – not just for the GCSE, but for everyday life.
Teachers will be working harder than ever to ensure your children reach their target grades, but teachers do not have time to focus as much as they would like on individuals. Perhaps your son or daughter is working just short of their target, or perhaps they are capable of achieving a much higher grade than the target set by their school.
Classroom teachers are constrained by school data and this affects the way they teach your children. Even though most teachers do not agree with this, they have no choice if they want to keep their jobs. They have to reach certain targets and make sure their students achieve specific grades. So, if your son or daughter's target grade is a B, their teacher will work hard to make sure your son or daughter gets that B. If your son or daughter is already working at a B level, the teacher might concentrate on those students who are not meeting their targets, therefore not pushing your son or daughter any further.
Many good teachers will put in the extra time to help their students achieve this, but unfortunately even good teachers run out of time and energy - especially with the pressures of meeting the targets of so many students in the school.
This is where The Cambridge Tutor can help. Since leaving the teaching profession, I am no longer bound by government targets, statistics and school league tables. I can work with individual students or small groups to ensure that they reach their full potential - not just their target grades.
As a parent paying for private tuition, you will want to know that you are getting value for money.
As well as being a fully-qualified teacher who has been in the profession since 2003, I have a BA and MA from Cambridge University (2001 and 2004 respectively).
I have worked with a range of pupils who have varying degrees of ability, helping many reach their potential. For some, this means exceeding the targets set for them by their schools.
I believe that every young person is unique and that the way they learn reflects this. It is difficult for classroom teachers to meet the needs of all the pupils they teach: large classes and surrounding behaviour problems are often barriers for hard-working pupils, preventing the achievements of which they are truly capable.
One-to-one or small-group tutoring can make a significant difference to pupils' self-confidence and potential to improve their grades. As a tutor, I will ensure that every lesson is tailored to the individual student's needs and that subsequent lessons are planned to ensure consistent progression and understanding. My years as a classroom teacher have honed my organisation skills and the degree to which I can differentiate lessons to suit pupils with a range of abilities; using these skills with fewer pupils will mean that each lesson will be planned with the precision every student deserves.
There are many excellent teaching resources available for every subject at every level: however, these are not always tailored exactly to meet the needs of all pupils. Once I have had the opportunity to meet your child and gauge where they are and what they need to do to progress, I will create the necessary resources to ensure that their lessons meet their needs and your expectations. This means that, unlike pre-prepared resources, mine will have been planned and prepared with your son or daughter in mind, without having to take the needs of other pupils into account.
I am happy to work with small groups of pupils (no more than four) at a slightly lower rate per student. This could be a cost-effective way of obtaining extra help for your son or daughter whilst sharing the cost with like-minded parents.
An hour’s lesson each week, which includes the time I spend preparing, sending tasks to complete independently, assessing completed tasks, and giving parental feedback, either written or face-to-face at the end of each lesson.
£45 for each lesson.
£40 for each lesson when you pay for half a term in advance. (Number of weeks will vary each half term.)
An hour’s lesson each week, which includes the time I spend preparing, sending tasks to complete independently, assessing completed tasks, and giving written parental feedback.
Ticket prices vary, usually from around £6 per session – see Events page for details of planned sessions.