As pupils across the country receive their GCSE results today, we celebrate the work of our tutors with their Year 11 pupils and we congratulate our tutees on their results. We hope all the pupils we supported in Maths, English and Science get the results they need for whatever next step they have chosen in education, training or work.

In what has been a disruptive and challenging academic year for every child and young person in education, the school closures due to the covid-19 pandemic had an immense impact on those pupils who had prepared to take final exams this summer.

Despite this, Tutor Trust have been proud of the tutoring provided to all the Year 11 pupils in every one of our partner schools, before and during the national lockdown. We worked with over a thousand Year 11 pupils in the 2019/20 academic year in 76 Secondary schools across Greater Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool.

We were devastated not to see our assignments through to completion, but are still proud of the impact our fantastic tutors had in the time they worked with their pupils. Over 75% of the tutoring we had planned to deliver this academic year had been completed before lockdown began. We will be capturing the highlights of our tutoring sessions, plus inspiring case studies and feedback from schools, in our 2020 Impact Report.

Two of our Secondary tutors have already shared their experience of working with GCSE pupils earlier this year.

Charley Hembrow, one of our Alternative Provision tutors, worked at Trafford High School tutoring Maths:

“When I first began tutoring J at Trafford High, he was with a relatively disruptive group of lads, but I think J was surprised when this wasn’t met with hostility from a ‘teacher figure’. This combined with the fact I began to teach J on a more 1:1 basis saw our relationship continually improve and the J I taught towards the beginning of lockdown seemed a completely changed man.

“With this much improved behaviour, it became clear that J was competent with his Maths, a truth that had frustrated his Maths teacher in the past with J only showing this in glimpses. I’m sure with an extra month or so, J could begin to unlock his true potential.“

Sarah Thrussell, a Primary and Secondary tutor in Manchester, was working with Year 11 pupils in Maths also:

“I tutored Year 11 students at Reddish Vale High School in Stockport from February until the programme was cut short by school closures in March. This was a really enjoyable tutoring assignment as the students were incredibly enthusiastic about the opportunity for tuition and help in the lead up to their exams.

“After their mock exams, it was great to hear students say that they tried exam questions they would’ve previously skipped over because we had covered the topic in tuition. I think this shows the potential for tutoring to improve a student’s confidence, self-esteem and attitude towards education.”

It’s been a challenging year for all of us, not least the Year 11s across the country who were preparing for GCSE exams. Tutor Trust are proud of all the pupils we’ve worked with and all the tutors that have given them such high-quality support. Through the National Tutoring Programme, we hope to be working with many more disadvantaged pupils currently in Year 10 and lots of new Year 7 pupils, so we can help them catch up suitably in the new school year.