In Britain 24%, of students are getting tutoring, rising to 40% in London according to The Sutton Trust. In Germany 15% of children are getting help with tutors. According to a 2011 report by the European Commission, in Eastern European Member States, the decline in teachers’ salaries was a great influence on the rise of private tutoring during the 1990s.
The tutoring landscape is expansive yet across Europe the tutoring rates vary greatly. In Southern Europe it is particularly high. In Central and Eastern Europe tutoring has been popular and widespread since the fall of the iron curtain with many students doubling up as tutoring themselves. While in Western Europe the scale of tutoring greatly increased during the last decade, the Nordic Member States appear to be the least affected by the phenomenon so far.
The global tutoring market will surpass the $152 billion mark in 2015, according to market research firm Global Industry Analysts Inc. The surge is mainly due to the rise of educational enrichment businesses in Asia particularly Asia-Pacific Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and China. In South Korea alone it was projected to reach $13.9 billion in 2012 that is roughly 15% of the entire market Growth in the U.S. is nowhere near that level. But last year the federal government invested $134 million into these businesses under the No Child Left Behind Act, Tutoring services vary from offering in-house trained tutors, to a commission-based and finally subscription-based platforms.
One platform that is based on the latter model and is disrupting the tutoring landscape is Meetnlearn. By providing direct access to tutors that are often difficult to find in classifieds, the platform supports connections between students and tutors in a range of subjects and discipline.
It cuts costs for both parents and tutors. Meetnlearn provides a central meeting place in a fragmented landscape. This provides greater support, on the one hand for busy parents who are often overstretched, over-worked and underpaid-- the service is free for parents—furthermore it can be very time consuming for parents to find reliable teacher. On the other hand tutors struggle to find the time to manage all their students. Tutoring platforms such as Meetnlearn offer ease and accessibility, consolidating and managing their students in one central platform.
More Tutoring Time = More Valuable Lessons
Oliver Korbas, a university student, was one of the first teachers on the Meetnlearn platform. He had some experience but he had to manage all the work himself, until he started using Meetnlearn. Thanks to this service he was able to scale up by gaining 21 students and monetize by running his tutoring service more efficiently, earning €800 per month charging about €12 an hour. Meetnlearn platform kept him more efficient and organized and he was able focus more closely on bringing value into his lessons for his students
Finding the Right Fit
A student in UK who was struggling to be the best in her class in mathematics, was in the top set, but near the bottom of the class. Her mathematics tutor is taking her steadily through difficult concepts. Suddenly the Maths teacher gets M.E right before her final exams. The supply teacher begins with Russian mathematics, ignoring the syllabus, assuming everyone in the class needs a challenge. The girl falls behind and cannot grasp the remaining syllabus on her own. She does not achieve the expected grade. Deciding to retake the exam she asks her former Maths teacher to tutor her. Within four weeks they go through the whole syllabus together and her grades improve from a D to a B, giving her the entry she needed back into the system. With online tutoring platforms like Meetnlearn the whole process of meeting and reconnecting becomes easier.
With feedback from the student, she described how, through tutoring, she was not only able to have a better and more personal learning experience leading to better learning outcomes, but also it gave her motivation to develop her own learning strategy and to understand the concepts more comprehensively.
Peer and Intergenerational Learning
Another student in Germany, was failing in Physics and after hiring a 22 year old as a physics teacher over the Meetnlearn platform, she increased her grade from a 6 to a 3 and remarked at how much easier Physics had become once she was able to grasp the concepts with him in her own time.
Despite the 2011 report from the EU Commission discussing that it is much more about maintaining the competitive advantages of the already successful and privileged, cases such as those above reveal how there is a growing need to meet with tutors in order to get back into the system that is, on a global scale in need of reform in a variety of areas. Instead of children falling through the gaps in the cover all public education systems, free platforms that are free for parents like Meetnlearn are increasingly giving easier access to engaging and energetic tutors that are often only a few years older or one generation above the students themselves. This kind of peer and intergenerational learning gives young people the chance not only to pass on their knowledge, often deepening their understanding of their subjects, but also gives encouragement to students who often look up to their older peers, spurring their motivation further to develop their own learning strategies and often giving tutors the chance to improve their teaching strategies, giving way to an mutual benefit.
How Tutoring Platforms can make the whole process easier
Perhaps if we can understand the tutoring landscape more comprehensively from feedback of students and teachers who are using platforms such as Meetnlearn then we can feed this back into the public education system to improve and support what is already in place instead of just disregarding the whole system and instead as seeing this shadow industry as a buttress to improvement.