Unity Schools Partnership

THE CHOICE FOR GREAT TUTORS

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FAQs
for Schools

We have tried to think of all the questions you might have about the National Tutoring Programme and SP Tutors. If you cannot find the answer you are looking for here, and haven’t read it in our ‘About Us’ and ‘Information for Schools’ page, please get in touch by emailing us at contact-us@sptutors.co.uk or by telephone (01440 333110).

Pupils will be tutored in small groups of  three (one-to-one for SEND pupils). for each block.  Each block consists of 15 hours, typically divided into 15 x 1 hour sessions, or 30 x 30 minute sessions, depending on the subject, and the needs and ages of the pupils.

Schools can use their professional judgement on which pupils they consider to be the most disadvantaged but are encouraged to meet a target of 65% Pupil Premium pupils.   The focus of the NTP is on supporting disadvantaged pupils aged 5-16.  Schools should therefore focus on disadvantaged pupils, including pupils eligible for Pupil Premium funding, Free School Meals, or those identified by schools as having an equivalent need for support.  Please see the NTP’s guide: Best Tutoring Practice: Briefing for Schools, Section 6 for more information.

There is likely to be a natural limit on how many pupils you decide to tutor – dependent on:

  • the budget you have available to fund your share of the cost of tutoring;
  • your school’s capacity to organise tutoring, e.g. scheduling sessions around other lessons, providing space and/or computer time and the availability of your staff to liaise with SP Tutors and our tutors around the content of the sessions.

The objective of the National Tutoring Programme and SP Tutors is to reach as many pupils in as many different schools and areas as possible, therefore, whilst there is no specific limit, if we receive requests for unusually large numbers of pupils, we will need to discuss this with you before we can accept the bookings and we will have to make an exceptional request to the NTP on your behalf.

NB – each pupil is entitled to 1 x block of 15 hours tuition using the NTP subsidy. If you require more, please contact us to discuss tuition outside of the National Tutoring Programme.

No.  The NTP have stated that they wish to reach as many pupils, in as many schools, across as many regions as they can.  Therefore, they have set a limit of one block per pupil.

If you have requirements for additional blocks for the same pupil(s) please discuss this with us and we can arrange blocks outside of the NTP programme to suit your needs.

What if my pupil has multi-disciplinary needs? You can split the content of the 15 hour block for primary school pupils into 8 hours English and 7 hours of Maths, for example.

Tutoring can cost as little as £5.88 per pupil, per hour*

Each block includes a complementary PupilKnowHow 1-year license for each pupil.

*(based on 15 hours, 1:3 ratio, ex-VAT, with NTP subsidy).

We’ve kept pricing simple.  Each block will cost schools £264.38 +VAT, no matter pupil ratio, region, delivery (online/face-to-face), subject, key stage. This represents 30% of £881.25, with the NTP Tuition Partners funding the remaining 70%

PupilKnowHow

To support pupils to build positive relationships to learning, SP Tutors has developed a pupil learning app, designed for online and offline use between tutoring sessions. PupilKnowHow provides learning opportunities for a variety of subjects, and tools for pupils to support them with wellbeing, self-regulation and metacognitive strategies.  Tutors and/or class teachers can monitor pupil wellbeing and self-perceptions and tailor tutoring sessions to address pupil need. This innovative app is included in our tutoring package – each eligible pupil receives one year’s licence which means the benefits continue far beyond tutoring.

Cost of Tuition Outside NTP

If you require tuition outside of the NTP – please contact us with your requirements for a quote.

Other information:

Schools are free to use to use additional catch-up funding to pay for the remaining costs.

NB  In addition to this, as end-users of the service, schools are required to pay VAT on the full cost of the tutor service (£176.25 per block/package).  This can be recovered in the usual way.

Yes.  As the consumer of the service, schools  pay VAT on the full cost of the tutoring service, rather than the subsidised rate.  This is recoverable in the normal way.

 

Worked example:

Unsubsidised block/package cost: £1057.50 inc VAT

Unsubsidised block/package cost: £881.25 ex VAT

Total VAT on block/package: £176.25

Therefore, schools pay:

70% Subsidised block/package: £264.38 (Ex VAT)

Plus £176.25 VAT (on full cost of tutoring service)

Total for schools: £440.63 (incl. VAT)

The difference in what we charge schools and what we pay tutors includes but is not limited to:

  • employment on-costs
  • our extensive and continuing tutor training offer
  • vetting (DBS etc)
  • administration  (incl. reporting and data)
  • school and tutor liaison
  • quality assurance
  • PupilKnowHow licence(s)

SP Tutors was established to ensure the government’s catch-up funding remained in education – we are a not-for-profit organisation.

Schools will be able to decide whether to use tuition sessions in addition to their pupils’ normal school day, or during their timetabled day.

Typically, we would expect sessions to occur within the school day, or before or after school, rather than weekends.

We offer face-to-face tutoring and online tutoring, but both will take place in school, unless exceptional circumstances (accepted by the NTP) occur – in which case we can discuss At-Home online tutoring.

More information and advice on deciding when best to schedule tutoring is available in the ​Best Tutoring Practice for Schools’ guide.

Yes!  SP Tutors actively encourages you to recommend someone you have already worked with.  There are so many positives around recommending someone to tutor at your school.

Tutors already familiar with the school, its pupils and its school-specific procedures, policies and curriculum will have an immediate advantage. Communications are fluid, trust and credibility are already established and expectations are already aligned.

This is not to say that tutors you don’t yet know won’t be equally apt at establishing relationships in a short amount of time and we have included lots of aspects in our training modules and have a dedicated tutor/school liaison team to facilitate this.

To recommend a tutor, ask them to apply using our online form and inform us they wish to work with your school.

Your recommended tutors can either elect to work solely at your school, or be available to other schools too.  If you have recommended a tutor, they will appear at the top of your search in our T Reach Tutor-School matching IT system.

Yes, but there are rules around this and it has to be in keeping with ‘the spirit of the National Tutoring Programme’ which is to provide extra capacity and/or expertise to schools, to supplement high-quality teaching.

You need to be sure members of staff have the skills and capacity to do so and have applied to be employed as a tutor by SP Tutors.  They have to be employed by a tuition partner for your school to receive the subsidised tutoring via NTP.

SP Tutors will still need to run the normal, necessary pre-employment checks like DBS and Teacher Prohibition check, plus ensure they have a valid Safeguarding certificate. There are some core training modules that the tutor will have to undertake before being able to tutor in your school.

Our bespoke schools-tutors matching IT system (T-Reach) will allow you to choose a tutor that is best suited to your school and your pupils’ needs.

Tutoring will be most effective when it is closely aligned with the curriculum and guided by the classroom teacher. Once you have chosen a tutor with whom you would like to work, you should liaise with your tutor and provide information about the needs of individual pupils, as well as any important information about the school, for example related to its Covid policies (a school induction pack – as laid out in the MoU).  It is important to agree suitable, achievable aims for the block which can be used to monitor the progress of the pupils, and SP Tutors can use as a measure of the tutor’s effectiveness.

More information on working effectively with Tuition Partners is available in the ​Best Tutoring Practice for Schools’ guide.

SP Tutors, during the application to become an official Tuition Partner of National Tutoring Programme, went through a rigorous assessment and approval process conducted by the Education Endowment Foundation.

The quality criteria set for approval included an assessment of:

– The tutor recruitment and training process;
– The provider’s experience of working with schools;
– The tutor training process;
– The systems and processes for communication with schools
– The provider’s experience of supporting disadvantaged pupils;
– The provider’s monitoring, quality assurance and tracking processes;
– The provider’s prior evidence of impact.

Furthermore:

  • We have systems in place, and a team of people to liaise with the Key Teacher at your school.  At key milestones, we will contact your Key Teacher to establish whether the aims of the block are being met, and if not, we will discuss strategies of how to support the tutor so they can adapt plans/resources/approaches so that the aims are met.
  • We have an internal support mechanism for tutors too, which involves on-demand access to training modules, live workshop support from educational experts, peer support forums and a network of experienced teacher mentors that we can call on for support and advice.
  • Many of our tutors are experienced education practitioners, many of whom hold QTS – those that do not will have undergone extra tutor training in the pedagogy of tutoring.  You can choose whether you opt for a qualified teacher tutor (with QTS) or a tutor (no QTS) and verify their level of educational experience during the matching process.

No – you will not miss out.  The NTP has put measures in place to encourage a fair spread of tutoring across the regions and schools and will be monitoring all activity via Tuition Partners.

However, we would encourage you to register with us using this form, so that once we reach a certain limit, we can advise you to register and book your blocks.