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Tutor review


Everything you need to know about choosing a tutor for your child.

This section covers tutor agencies that actually know their tutors personally, ie they interview them and keep in close touch. Most do this in person, although some by Skype. We have visited and had extensive consultation with all the agencies in Section A.These are:


Able Tutors

Review snapshot: We’ve been very pleased,’ says a parent. ‘My child needed very specific help, Lynne had the right person, put us together and it made a big difference.’ read more

Athena Tuition

Review snapshot: Nice’ and ‘helpful’ are words that cropped up frequently among parents we spoke to. Nelson, as the front man, got a huge amount of praise. ‘He gives good advice, is efficient and friendly and ultimately provides great tutors.’ ‘He’s very professional, amiable and brilliant at his job.’ etc. read more

Bespoke Tuition

Review snapshot: ‘Because he was a teacher, he knows the schools inside out, as well as the best resources for tutors and he gives us access to them. He’s also excellent at matching families to the right tutors and he’s a great problem solver. He bothers with the fine detail to give an outstanding service.’ read more

Bonas MacFarlane

Review snapshot: ‘This is the seriously upper crust of the tutoring industry, kneaded and done to a crisp according to the precise educational recipe for your privileged progeny." read more

British Home Tutors

Review snapshot: ‘A bunch of committed teachers who have organised themselves into a sort of collegiate collective. They’re in it for the enjoyment of the thing.’ read more

Bruton Lloyd

Review snapshot: Back in the early noughties, friends Ekaterina Ametistova and Anna Kunitsyna (who met at Moscow State University, where Ekaterina did an MSc read more

Capital Tuition Group

Review snapshot: ‘I couldn’t praise Capital Tuition more highly – they listened to me and assigned a tutor who was exceptional in every way and he ended up getting an A.' read more

Carfax College

Review snapshot: "International families send their children here to study on a long-term basis. Principal Rupert Alesbury was a King’s Scholar at Eton, studied French..." read more

Chelsea & Fulham Tutors

Review snapshot: ‘I’ve used tutor agencies before and they were fine, but with Clare, there was a genuine interest in getting us into the right school,’ said one parent, reflecting the view of most we spoke to... read more

De Silva Tutors

Review snapshot: ‘The tutors are his friends and most of his clients seem to be friends – or certain to become friends – and he is on dining and tennis-playing terms with many of them.’ read more

Dulwich Tutors

Review snapshot: ‘DT saved my life!’ gushed one parent. ‘I’m a busy, pressurised, single working parent and our tutors stayed with us for long periods of time providing crucial support and advice to both my children, which went well beyond academic tuition.’ read more

Elite IB Tutors

The company’s flexibility is also a strong point, according to families. ‘Sometimes we only want a tutor before exams or special assignments, not every week, which has never been a problem.’ read more

Enjoy Education

Review snapshot: "Founded in 2006 by Kate Shand who is committed, passionate, energetic and hugely likeable. Clearly on a mission to deliver a top quality service to her clients – and her tutors – Kate is eloquent on the personal nature of the tutor-client-agency relationship and has a positively moral take on what she sees as her job." read more

Exceptional Academics

Rarely do the owners’ names pop up so frequently in our survey responses – testament to the very personal way in which this outfit is run by Dara Hanley and Matthew Chan. ‘Great company, great people – Dara and Matthew are professional, highly skilled and knowledgeable in their disciplines.’ read more

Gabbitas Educational Consultants

Review snapshot: ‘They won’t just tell you what you want to hear and take your money – they are realistic with you, and that includes bringing tutoring to an end if they feel it might become a crux or has run its course.’ read more

Griffin & Bell

Review snapshot: ‘It’s on the more expensive side, particularly for more experienced tutors, but it’s absolutely my favourite. They’re honest, on the ball and have the best quality tutors,’ concluded another parent. read more

Hampstead and Frognal

Review snapshot: ‘Because he was a teacher, he knows the schools inside out, as well as the best resources for tutors and he gives us access to them. He’s also excellent at matching families to the right tutors and he’s a great problem solver. He bothers with the fine detail to give an outstanding service.’ read more

Harrison Allen

Review snapshot: ‘There is a unique sense of enjoyment here…this is an unpretentious but top class organisation which other parts …of the country could well look to and emulate.’ read more

Ivy Education

Review snapshot: 'We're quite small, so we can give our clients the individual attention they deserve, and I happen to think our approach is very methodical. We're always thinking about the best way to help students, and we're proud of our focus on qualified teachers and experienced practitioners.' read more

James Layland Tutors

Review snapshot: 'This is a real family firm: James Layland runs it; his sister Wendy is his PA; when we visited, his mum (also visiting) let us in and made us a cup of tea. Included on the staff are his two luscious, cream, long-haired Burmese cats, who sprawl nonchalantly across much of the table in the conservatory where most of the teaching takes place, and help to break the ice with reluctant or nervous tutees.' read more

JK Educate

Review snapshot: The parents we spoke to couldn’t get enough of these add-on options. ‘It’s a one-stop shop for tutoring, but it’s a la carte, which means you can pick and choose what works for you. What could be better?’ said one parent. read more

Kensington & Chelsea Tutors

Review snapshot: Tutors themselves are described as being ‘outstanding quality,’ ‘fun’ and ‘smiley.’ ‘They were a real pleasure to have around,’ said one. read more

Kings Tutors

Review snapshot: 'We had two tutors via this company and they were both fantastic,’ says one parent. Their enthusiasm was contagious, and they managed to motivate my son to try his best, and he really looked forward to his tutor session.’ read more

Leading Lights Education & Wellbeing

Review snapshot: Tutors told us they had a ‘greater degree of interest in young people and in us tutors’ than other agencies they worked for and their emotional buy-in shone through again and again. A few had suggestions around improving admin, but otherwise we heard about the organisation’s ‘integrity,’ ‘hard work’ and ‘relentless commitment to excellent outcomes for students.’ ‘I’ve never known a tutoring agency quite like this.’ read more

Minerva Tutors

Review snapshot: This is the Innocent Drinks (as in smoothies) of the tutor world – run by bright young things that have come in and shaken up all the industry norms, resulting in a friendly, energetic, highly branded, internet-savvy company with a clear edge. read more

Newman Tuition

Review snapshot: Our current tutor is outstanding’ and ‘The way the tutor taught was quite exhilarating’ were the kind of comments we heard repeatedly, which most attribute to the excellent matching process read more

Osborne Cawkwell Educational Consultants

Review snapshot: I have used them on and off for my three children to prepare for exams, from Common Entrance to GCSEs or Alevels, to give a bit of confidence when needed, to boost effort when there was some lagging. They have been most reliable, professional and courteous, always providing tutors with an amazing fit for the children,’ another one said. read more

Owl Tutors

Review snapshot: There’s no shortage of praise from parents. ‘They’ve been wonderful – we couldn’t have asked for more.’ ‘Excellent tutors and organisation.’ ‘Outstanding.’ And so on. Read more...

Riviera Tutors

Review snapshot: Tutors enthuse about the company too. ‘I am very satisfied that the company responds well to my needs as a tutor and I feel that all my tutees have benefited from my tutoring. This is testament to how well they fit tutors to tutees,’ says one. ‘The company is very responsible, accessible and holds the needs of it pupils in very high regard. I have an extremely positive appreciation of the company,’ read more

Simply Learning Tuition

Review snapshot: ‘SLT are by far the best London agency I have encountered – the team are committed to their vision.’ read more

Strive Tutors

Review snapshot: ‘Confidence’ is the one word that kept cropping up among clients. ‘They’ve helped my son improve his grades, but equally importantly increase his confidence and reduce his anxiety levels.’ ‘Mastering of specific skills and increasing confidence is their forte.’ ‘We wanted improved exam grades and confidence and that’s what we got, with amazing service and wonderful and personable tutors thrown in.’ And so on.

The Basic Skills Centre

Review snapshot: ‘We’re a happy and caring place where pupils come first.  Children enjoy coming here, and we aim to make it as encouraging and supportive a place as possible.' read more

The Fulham Study LLP

Review snapshot: Praised by parents for warmth and empathy and by an employee as ‘motherly, lovely but firm,’ dyslexia specialist Carol Cox started tutoring local children in her basement at home as a favour to parents worried about looming entrance exams. read more

Titanium Tutors

Review snapshot: Re-engagement is a stand-out area, according to parents: ‘My son hadn’t picked up a book in almost a year, but they got him back on track ready for university – I would highly recommend them.’ read more

Trefoil Tutors

Review snapshot: You could grab yourself a (relative) bargain here, with fees starting as low as £33.80 an hour, moving up to £60 an hour for the most experienced tutors, including Vivek himself. This includes travel expenses and tutors get all of it, bar £5 which goes to Trefoil as commission. read more

Most popular Good Schools Guide articles

  • Capital Tuition overview

    Most tutoring is by trained teachers for GCSEs and A levels, with a little (but growing) amount at university level (‘but we hold our hands up if we can’t help, for instance we recently had to turn down a tutoring request from a property development student,’ says Matthew). Specialist subjects currently span biology, chemistry, physics, maths, further maths, English language, English lit, geography, history, RE, philosophy and ethics, psychology, French, Spanish, German, Latin, Ancient Greek, PE, business studies and economics. Small amount of 11+ and 13+ also on offer from non-teacher trained tutors.

  • Dulwich Tutors overview

    Review snapshot: ‘DT saved my life!’ gushed one parent. ‘I’m a busy, pressurised, single working parent and our tutors stayed with us for long periods of time providing crucial support and advice to both my children, which went well beyond academic tuition.’

  • Secondary school: Understanding the 11+

    The 11+ is the entrance exam procedure for getting your brightish little button into a fee-paying or state grammar school. Much of the country abolished the 11+ several decades ago for state schools, but a few local authorities, such as Bucks and Kent, retained a large number of grammar schools and run county-wide entrance tests. In some other areas, such as Barnet and Kingston, a few grammar schools exist in tandem with the comprehensive system found in most of the country. These grammar schools set their own entrance exams.

  • How do I find a tutor for my child?

    Whatever your reason for using tutoring services outside of school, you’ll want to get the best bang for your educational buck. Our quick checklist will make sure you find the most effective tutor for your needs. Why does my child need a tutor? Whether it’s to prepare for an exam, to help after an extended absence from school or to boost a problem area, have clear objectives in mind to ensure you choose the right private tutor for your needs. How do I find the best tutor for my child’s needs? Nothing beats word of mouth so ask around those…

  • Tutor agencies - section B

    Tutor agencies in this section meticulously check references, CRB* records, etc but, partly because of the size of their lists, conduct their personal interviews only over the telephone.

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