Back to School: What do Tutors Want Parents to Know?

August 29, 2014 by Mark Maclaine
Image What do Tutors Want Parents to Know?

We can assume that parents and tutors both understand the importance of effective communication and support of one another, yet sometimes this can be forgotten. Mark Maclaine, a tutor for over 16 years has interviewed over 300 tutors and answers the question “What do tutors want parents to know?” Here are a few of the best answers.what do tutors want parents to knowCOMMUNICATION

“Our real aim is to make sure your child lives a happy and fulfilled life. Also that they are able to cope with the demands of the modern education system. If your goal is only grades, we’ll do our best to deliver this but please don’t ask us to do this if it will dramatically influence a child’s life for the worst.”

“If we bring up any issues with regards to your child, please understand that we are doing so because it is our job and we care. Listen to what we have to say rather than attacking.”

“Let us know if there are any issues at home. We will do our best to deal with bad behaviour firmly yet with kindness, however it can be very helpful to know if there’s anything else going on so we can take this into account.”

“If you have any issues with a tutor please bring it to the attention of the tutor first. We will listen carefully and try to work out how to best solve the problem. Don’t go right to the agency if it’s something that we can solve between ourselves.”

“We will respect your privacy and will never talk about you to other parents or the press. Please also respect our privacy and don’t gossip about us.”

“If your child has any concerns about their tutor please let us know right away. Children do sometimes make things up, but if true it is always very useful for us to get feedback.”

“If we’ve not brought up any issues with you then you can assume that there aren’t any. We will when and if there are any.”

“If a student tells us anything that is important for you to know, endangers them or risks our work together we will tell you right away. Otherwise please respect the privacy of your child. The safe space created in our lessons is what will allow us to do our job.”

“If you have some time please ask us if there’s anything you can do to help. The more you can take on the less money you spend, and the more a child gets to hang out with their parent.”

“Take the time to praise your child on their hard work rather than focussing on grades. If they can learn to work hard and focus less on the end goal, they’ll not only be happier but perform better too.”

“If we take the time to tell you something about your child please remember that we are just doing our job. In turn we will recognise that this is only our opinion but you’ve hired us to do a job so take the time to see if there’s anything to what we’re saying.”

“If your child feels sad or angry, please take the time to empathise with them and understand what’s going on. It doesn’t mean you have to agree with them, or change anything, simply being empathised with will help alleviate these feelings meaning they don’t have to bring them into their lessons.”

what do tutors want parents to knowSUPPORT

“Please make sure your child is ready and has everything they need by the time the lesson starts. It’s not always possible but in the long run it’ll save you money and allow us to cover a great deal more.”

“Re-enforce the authority of the tutor in front of your child. We have a job to do and can’t do it if the child doesn’t respect us. At the same time we promise to support your authority. Working as a team we are far more likely to succeed in helping your child.”

“If your child is really sick, let them recover. Avoid sending them into lessons with hope that they can catch up with school.”

“If I set a punishment for a child please support me on this, if there are no consequences to their actions they will never learn appropriate boundaries within our lessons.”

“Teach your child to cover their mouth when they cough. If we get sick then we can’t work!”

“Don’t ask me push your child beyond where I feel they should be. Often children suffer later on if they don’t know the basics. Understand that sometimes I need to make sure they understand these before I move on.”

“Remember that children will often choose to lie when the consequence of telling the truth is perceived to be greater than the risk of being caught. Help support them telling the truth by rewarding honesty, either by reducing punishments or praising it, and you’ll make everyone’s life easier.”

“If lessons are happening after school please make sure your child has had some kind of snack before we start. Try to avoid sugar and sugary drinks before the lesson, as with many children these can negatively affect their concentration later on in the lesson.”

“Please make sure they’ve slept well the nights of and before lessons. Don’t just assume they’ve gone to sleep, please take the time to check. It’s pointless hiring a tutor for them if they can’t concentrate.”

what do tutors want parents to knowWe would like to collect parent/client comments for “What Parents want Tutors to Know” if you have some tips for tutors please email

If you are a Tutor, what would you want parents to know? Please write your comment below
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