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Child Education Welfare and Employment Advice

Private Tutors

Thinking of employing a private tutor?

There are lots of reason why a parent or carer may employ a tutor for their child:

  • to help with school work
  • to improve their grades
  • to learn a musical instrument
  • for extracurricular activity, like sports coaching, singing or drama
  • to pass entry exams into schools

This information is designed to help a parent or carer to safely select an appropriately trained and verified tutor for their child.

Download this advice in a leaflet (pdf)

Does Achieving for Children hold a list of approved tutors?

No, they don’t hold a list. Parents or carers are solely responsible for selecting and funding private tuition.

Can the school help me find a tutor?

The school can’t help find a tutor for your child, but they may be able to offer additional support for your child on-site as part of the support they already provide. The school will already have a good understanding and knowledge of your child and their learning needs and abilities. The school may be able to tell you about clubs available like sports, drama and music. The school may know of good local tutors being used by other parents and can advise you.

How do I find a private tutor? Many private tutors advertise online, and using social media, like Facebook and local pages. You’ll need to carefully consider lots of factors when hiring a tutor.

  • Always interview candidates and check their professional experience and qualifications.
  • Check the tutor is competent in the area that you are looking for that is GCSE or 11+.
  • Do they hold a valid and up-to-date Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Check (DBS) (opens a new window), issued within the last two years? Always ask to see a copy. A good tutor will be able to email you this or show you this quickly.
  • Get a reference from another parent: check they are trustworthy, get a feel for their character and attitude.
  • Ask to see certificates and qualifications that have been mentioned in the advert or information from the tutor.
  • It is advisable that your child meets the tutor to see if they get on, or at east has a trial session.
Tutor sessions
  • If tuition takes place in your home, a quiet place is best, but never in a bedroom. It is important that you monitor your child and the tutor and you can have access to the room at all times.
  • When your child goes to another premises for one-to-one tuition, you should always stay with your child, in sight. When your child goes for group tuition, seek assurances that your child will always remain within the group.
  • Don’t allow your tutor to collect or drop off your child for sessions.
Tuition centres
  • Always visit the tuition centre and ask to see their safeguarding policy.
  • Check staff are trained in safeguarding, and ask what training they have undertaken.
  • Seek clarification of how they recruit staff, how they make checks and get fully enhanced DBS certificates.
  • See if they provide a waiting area for parents and ask if you can observe a session.
  • If your child is having a one-to-one session, stay on-site.
What to do if you are worried about the appropriateness of a tutor, or if your child tells you something inappropriate has happened
  • Report concerns to the Single Point of Access (SPA) or MASH. The relevant professionals will then make further enquiries, and where necessary instigate an investigation and involve the Local Authority Designated Officer (opens a new window) and the police.
  • If your child tells you about inappropriate behaviour by their tutor, or that they feel uncomfortable, listen to your child, reassure them and make sure they know it’s not their fault.
  • If you have concerns or want to discuss a tutor whose conduct concerns you, please call the police or
  • Kingston and Richmond SPA: 020 8547 5008
Private tutor checklist
  • Ask advice about tutors from your child’s school.
  • Remember you are the employer, so get references and interview the tutor.
  • Ask to see evidence of qualifications and a recent DBS check.
  • Observe the tutor and your child during sessions.
  • Never allow tutor sessions to take place in a bedroom.
  • Always check adequate safeguarding is in place and you can observe sessions if using a tuition centre.
  • Report any concerns you have about a tutor.