Can I Afford To Use A Tutorial College?
All tutorial colleges are private and therefore charge a fee, which tends to be about the same as the average private school. Private schools generally cost anywhere between £10,000 and £33,000 for a one-year, full-time course. At Barts College, a full-time student can expect to pay approximately £21,500 for one year, taking four A levels and receiving entirely individual, one-to-one tuition.
Most people would conclude that this puts tutorial colleges in the same bracket as any other private school: firmly beyond the financial reach of most families.
Something to bear in mind is that most privately educated youngsters spend five to ten years or even more at private schools which, indeed, only the very wealthiest can afford – for even one child, let alone several. However, most people only require the services of a tutorial college for one academic year, that usually being either the final year of their GCSEs, the final year of A levels, or for a re-take year.
In some instances, shorter or part-time courses may be appropriate, and this can be expected to cost much less. A student may need only to improve their grades in three GCSE subjects to get into their college of choice, or attain a higher grade in just one A level subject to secure their favoured university place. Where private schools don’t allow for that type of flexibility, tutorial colleges usually do.
At Bartholomews Tutorial College, for example, it is possible to complete one A level retake, with intensive tuition, in just a single term; this would cost around £11,500. Three GCSE’s spread across one academic year could be expected to cost about the same. In all cases tuition is delivered entirely on a one to one basis, providing the student with a level of academic and personal support unavailable elsewhere.
Students can expect to learn a lot more in a year at a tutorial college than at a regular school, as the tuition is more intensive and the courses more tailored. And during exam terms, students at tutorial colleges tend to continue beavering away at tutorials whilst students at other schools and colleges are on study leave.
At Barts College, parents of prospective students have the opportunity to meet with our Director of Studies to identify the most cost-beneficial option for their son or daughter. Once the course has commenced, the Director of Studies can guide parents and students in deciding whether any increase or decrease in hours is appropriate according to their progress, which at Barts is very closely monitored.
In the end, whether a family can afford tutorial college or not will always come down to the financial means of each family, weighed against the academic needs of their child. If your child is really struggling at their current school, or falling far short of their true potential, and if your economic circumstances allow it, you may eventually conclude that you can’t afford not to use a tutorial college. And in the long term, it could turn out to be the best investment in your child that you ever make.