8 Oct

Student Needs More Work But Parents Say No

One of my students needs more lessons ( 2 in a week ) but her mother says one lesson is sufficient. She is failing before I get an opportunity to teach her and i am hoping to get more than 65percent with more lessons but they don’t agree. How can i assist them?

Here you can probably assist them best by setting the right expectations while utilizing absolutely every resource available to this student to compensate for the inadequate quantity of tuition.

  • More tuition may not be in this family’s budget, or for whatever other reason the client seems unwilling to have more tutoring. We cannot force clients to have more tuition and in such situations must accept the limitation we are presented with, then, try to find creative solutions. Most importantly, don’t limit the student’s ability to succeed by focusing yourself on the limits of the situation. It is up to you to figure out how to best help this student – it is your responsibility.
  • Most certainly the student would benefit from seeing their school teacher for extra help. This is free and should be done regardless of anything else. They can see the teacher after school, before school, during recess or during lunch. This is something you can insist upon much easier since it does not cost anything to the client. A structure for seeing the teacher will help here. Seeing the teacher should support your efforts and you should plan with the student what kind of problems should be left for you and what kind of problems shouldn’t be.
  • Typically, leave the “question answering” for the teacher as much as possible. This way you can focus on strategy, problem solving, organisational skills and other areas where the teacher can only be of limited assistance.
  • This is very important: you must set the right expectations with the client. No client wants to hear “sorry, we need to do more tutoring otherwise your child will not improve.” This is not very inspiring and shows a lack of confidence on the tutor’s part. Rather, you should explain your assessment of the student’s position. Also, explain what you feel is a reasonable expectation for progress – explain what would be an unreasonable expectation.
  • After having the “expectations” conversation you should discuss with the clients what else you can all do to help the student. For example, seeing the teacher for extra help, getting extra resources, studying with peers etc. Ultimately, they need to know you plan for helping their child given the limitations that you just explained. Make sure to leave things on a positive note so that the student isn’t demotivated.

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