Pupils return to school for the new academic year – 2nd September 2020 This week, pupils across the country will be returning to school for the first time in what has been as much as six months for many. Due to the massive disruption of the 2019/20 academic year, the new academic year will be more crucial than ever for catching pupils up on work and closing the attainment gap. At Tutor Trust, we are excited to get back to work with our partner schools so that our tutors once again have significant impact. We are anticipating a year of dramatic growth and change, affecting all areas of how our charity operates. Here are some of the big changes we’re preparing for... Training In order to adapt to a world that still largely works remotely, we have been taking our tutor training process online. Tutors will now complete training and access resources through Thinqi, an online learning platform. Current tutors will need to complete their annual safeguarding training along with a compulsory refresher assignment, consisting of video tutorials on high quality tuition. Access to Thinqi will be granted when tutors have been given their login details, which will be distributed by Emily Parkes, our Quality and Impact Coordinator. Newly recruited tutors in an online training session. Thinqi will also contain our hugely successful tutorials covering a wide range of topics. We made these at the start of the school closure period to ensure tutors could still develop their knowledge and understanding, having been unable to deliver tuition. Matt Wallis, our Director or Training and Quality Assurance, has made a short tutorial outlining Thinqi and how it will support our tutors to have as much impact on their pupils as possible. Please watch the video below to find out more about how Thinqi will work and improve your experience as a tutor! Connected Tutors will also be introduced to ‘Connect’, our new system for assignment allocation and monitoring. For tutors to be on the ‘Connect’ system they need to have a Thinqi account, which is again to be obtained by contacting Emily Parkes. Staff As the amount of tutoring we deliver increases, we will need to increase capacity, and therefore our office team. We have already welcomed Sharon Sadler, our new Leeds School Partnerships Manager, as well as Sarah Thrussell, a new full-time Alternative Provision tutor who has been working with Tutor Trust since January 2017. Online tuition During lockdown, we supported over 150 pupils through online tutoring. We intend to continue working online, as well as through a hybrid model of online and face-to-face tutoring funded by the Hg Foundation, and almost certainly for some schools we will return to our traditional face-to-face service. Tutor Trust are also hoping to work with the National Tutoring Programme, the government’s catch-up scheme for supporting pupils which is currently accepting applications for funding. Through this scheme, we will hope to reach even more disadvantaged pupils than ever before and help catch them up with the key learning they’ve missed out on over the past year. In our ninth year, our organisation is proud of everything we’ve achieved so far, especially the work completed throughout the lockdown period. This new academic year presents amazing opportunities to expand our work and continue to strengthen our existing partnerships with schools, universities, organisations and funders. Our team can’t wait to get back to work so we can transform more lives through tutoring.