Is It Worth Spending Money on a Private Tutor?
The need for extra lessons is unique for each student who contemplates or resolves to make use of private tutoring. Not all students receive and digest information the same way, therefore the need for private tutoring arises as a means to meet all standards of learning areas to progress to the next level.
Although many might argue that the state of the South African schooling system, especially in public schools where the teacher to student ratio is ridiculously high, causes a learning barrier for many pupils. Overcrowded classrooms makes it difficult for teachers to provide students with the extra attention they might need to master a certain learning unit. Some pupils are able to cope without an extended lesson while others find themselves in danger of repeating the grade without it. The schooling environment does play a huge role in the learning abilities of pupils and it sometimes only affects the student at tertiary level.
But the schooling system cannot be entirely to blame for a learner’s hindrance to achieve academic success. Often learners dedicate the majority of their time watching television programs of no educational value or indulge in social media platforms. This is common with a large percentage of learners who hit the preteen mark and older as their social status takes priority over their academic progress. While some adolescents are fairly capable of excelling both socially and academically, others might not be as fortunate.
A lack in early childhood development in a learner can also contribute to the need for private tutoring. Children need structure from a very early age for optimum learning. There are various factors in relation to early childhood development namely physical, emotional, relational and intellectual aspects of a child. The physical development of a child refers to the importance of nutrition and encouraging the child to be active as it assist in stimulating the brain. The emotional aspect refers to the social, economic and domestic circumstances that affect a child and ultimately the child’s ability to learn under those conditions. The relational development of a child makes reference to the child’s interaction in the classroom or a learning environment. And lastly, all the aspects mentioned affects the child’s intellectual development. Parents, peers, educators and basically whoever the child comes into contact with, all play a role in the child’s early development and would ultimately determine whether or not the child would require the assistance of a private tutor during schooling.
Whatever the reason for a child taking additional lessons, the price for private tuition can be costly. Tutoring centres that students can visit on a weekly or daily basis charge approximately R85 per hour, if a child goes for 2 hour lessons for 3 days of the week it amounts to over R2000 per month, which is excluding the enrolment fee and a fee for notes and exercises for the curriculum as well as the cost of taking the child to the tutoring centre.
Another option would be to have a tutor teach the child in the privacy of his/her home. Private home tutors can charge anything between R150 to R350 per hour, it all depends on their expertise and the range of learning areas that they cover. Often the tutors offering lessons for students attending secondary school and higher would charge more than primary school level tutors. Private home tutors may also charge extra if the tutor is required to travel an extra distance to get to the student’s home. However, hiring a private home tutor through an agency may be more affordable as you can expect to pay approximately R200 per hour. If the tutor stays for 2 hours per day and only comes twice a week this would cost R3200 for the month.
The cost for a private tutor is expensive, particularly for parents in the middle to low income bracket. However, some tutoring centres offer group tutoring whereby the bigger the group, the less expensive. Another option would be to arrange for a private home tutor to give lessons for 2 students for the price of 1 and split the cost between the 2 students. The child still benefits from intense one on one lessons and is able to learn at a suitable pace to meet the necessary standards for progression. Tutors are also very patient and provide a relaxing environment for learning.
There are always ways and means to work around paying for private tutoring if it is needed. Private tutoring is beneficial for not only the child who battles to grasp concepts in various learning areas but also for the above average learner to further excel academically. At the end of the day, children are the future and ensuring that they receive the best education possible should be top priority to secure their future. Even if it means forking out a couple of thousands on private tutoring, it is definitely worth witnessing a child reach his/her full potential.