August 9, 2016
The following has been written by one of our top tutors Adam Muckle. Adam is also President of The Tutors’ Association and he is commenting on both his experiences as a tutor as well as his important role in the tutoring industry. Read on to find out about his thoughts…
I have been tutoring for seven years and tutored hundreds of students and had thousands of tutorials. From the beginning I was determined to make a go of it and make it a success. I had finished my law qualifications and a legal friend had first told me about tutoring while I was looking for work. I started a legal research position soon after and tutored at weekends. I then channelled the tuition money earned towards a Justice Mission in East Africa. It wasn’t really until 2012, when another legal friend, who also tutored, told me about a tutoring company. I signed up and within months I was tutoring up to thirty students, sent to Shanghai to tutor over the summer and then given a tutoring award by the end of the year. Since then I have tutored in London and a variety of locations in Europe and Asia, both face-to face and online. It’s full of great experiences.
In terms of my own tutoring technique, I draw on my own educational experiences when I was 10 to 12 years old, a pivotal time for me. I channel the negativity of that period of my life to create something positive for my tutees. My motivation for tutoring is that I don’t want them to go through the same educational difficulties I had at that age. It’s about building rapport and building confidence. Then, by fostering independence in learning, they can flourish for themselves at upper school. As a teenager I was privately tutored in Classical Greek and I understood just how dynamic tuition could be in shaping someone’s future. However, I never thought then that I would be a tutor myself, let alone be President of The Tutors’ Association.
The Tutors’ Association was founded in October 2013 as an industry-led initiative with four basic aims: First, to give much needed professional recognition to tutors; secondly to provide reassurance for parents on the first steps in selecting a tutor; thirdly to be a respected and responsible voice for the profession, and finally, and importantly, to give tutors a support network and community to share insights, challenges and exchange ideas.
Over the past decade or so tutoring has grown, both in the UK and abroad, into a multi- billion pound industry. There are hundreds of thousands of tutors all over the UK individually contributing to the educational lives and futures of others. Such an industry needs a coherent voice and we are establishing dialogues with schools, parents, the media and government. As I see it, The Tutors’ Association is both a standard-bearer forgood tutoring and a support network and community for tutors. I hope that through this the ethics of tutoring are established so that it can be as good as it can possibly be; that tutors are more knowledgeable about their profession and others in it and they are recognised for all the good work they do.
My role as President is to represent the membership, which currently stands at over 360, including over 150 corporate members who represent thousands of tutors. There is a growing list of professional membership benefits: recognised firstly with designatory letters and a membership certificate, we have a DBS application and renewal service, insurance schemes, legal helpline and financial advice services, among other benefits.
We have hosted five professional development events since last summer, with the participation and collaboration of our members. There have been two workshops on Dyscalculia training, a lunchtime talk on child psychology, and a seminar on fostering happiness and heroism in children. We also hosted an event on Tuition Business Growth in July and have also been developing a podcast on the benefits of tutoring. I have also created a few more panels to further develop membership engagement and participation. As ever, if any member has questions about the Association, if they would like to get more involved, or potential members are looking to join, I would be delighted to talk to them. We are open and inclusive. There is widespread agreement that individual tutors themselves can shape the Association that meets their needs and wants.
As President since March, I have represented the Association so far at the Education Show in Birmingham, at the Athena Tuition Conference in Edinburgh, at other tuition company events and at the Educational Festival at Wellington College in June. In July I gave the Presidential Address at the Association’s AGM which gives more detail about the Association’s progress this past year: http://thetutorsassociation.org.uk/AGM2016
We are currently finalising details of our first ever Tutoring Conference at Stowe School, to be held on Monday 24th October. Alongside a series of seminars presented by educational experts, one of our keynote speakers will be the most-capped former All-Blacks International rugby captain Sean Fitzpatrick. We would be delighted to welcome you on the day, now taking bookings: http://thetutorsassociation.org.uk/TutoringConference2016
So there has both been much progress and much to look forward to. With further growth and participation, together we can all support each other and make the profession stronger within the educational landscape in the UK.
For more information, see www.thetutorsassociation.org.uk
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