Finding a Tutor
Probably the most common source of an Eleven Plus tutor is personal recommendation. If you ask around at the school gates there will probably be several parents who have already gone through the 11+ exams with older children and may be happy to recommend someone to you. However, in some areas the 11+ is so fiercely competitive that a conspiracy of silence surrounds the identities of the best tutors.
The next most common source of tutors is advertisements in local papers. Some of these adverts will be for individual tutors, but others may be for large, established businesses in tutoring for the 11 Plus. They may provide glossy brochures or have a website advertising their services and featuring “parent testimonials”. Ignore these marketing tools and research their offering just as thoroughly as you would an individual tutor.
Some tutors and, more commonly, tutoring companies will hand out leaflets outside grammar school open days. Again, treat them with the same caution that you would use for an advert in the local newspaper.
There are also online tutors and tutoring companies. Check their credentials as carefully as you would a real-life tutor.
One source of tutors that is commonly overlooked by parents is the teachers at their child’s current school, some of whom may tutor for the 11+ out of hours. This can be a particularly happy solution if your child likes the teacher, because you have the security of already knowing how effective they are, and how the chemistry between the teacher and your child works. Be discreet in your enquiries though! Individual teachers, Head teachers and even the entire staff of some schools may be firmly opposed to the Eleven Plus exam and frown upon tutoring for it.
ElevenPlusExams Tutor Directory
Our online Tutor Directory is under review due to the administration of maintaining the Directory and the calls generated to our office when parents are unhappy with a tutor. We are not able to vet the tutors who register on the site, but parents have often assumed the tutor’s listing amounts to an endorsement by Eleven Plus Exams. Some members of the public have also assumed that these tutors are part of our organisation. The tutors are entirely independent and have no connection with Eleven Plus Exams, and their listing does not constitute a recommendation from us. You should exercise exactly the same caution when evaluating them as you would anyone else working with your child.
Lastly, there are tutoring agencies that provide 11 plus tutors. The advantage of an agency is that they should have checked the tutor’s qualifications and CRB clearance so that you don’t have to, but don’t take that for granted. You are most likely to find a specialist 11 plus tutor via an agency in counties where the grammar schools are widespread, such as Kent, Bucks and Essex. Outside of these areas you should check rigorously that the tutor provided knows precisely what is required for the entrance exam for the schools you are applying for (see our advice on Selecting a Tutor ). Inevitably a tutor employed via an agency is likely to be more expensive because the agency will be charging a fee. Check precisely how the agency takes their fee. Does the tutor pay to be listed with them? If so, the agency might not be entirely rigorous in checking each individual because their primary interest will be to maximise the number of tutors on their books, and thus their income.