Every year, over 200,000 children at school miss out on passing grades in GCSE English and/or maths. Without these gateway English and maths qualifications, young people are much more likely to drop out of further education and are locked out of many university courses, apprenticeships and key professions.
Having a tutor has been shown to be one of the most effective ways to help young people close gaps in education. But too often, this is out of reach for the poorest young people in further education.
Get Further exists to change this story, and to ensure more students can access the extra help they need to get back on track. The charity works by matching students in further education in need of extra help in English or maths to top tutors. Tutors are trained by expert teachers, and supported by a bespoke curriculum and resources that build confidence and address gaps in fundamental literacy and numeracy skills. Tutors develop mentoring relationships with students, increasing their motivation and supporting them to secure the grade they need.
With the fallout from Covid-19, now, more than ever, young people need extra support to help them progress to their next steps in education and work. This year, many young people enrolled in college or sixth form after a significant disruption to their education. With the support of its partners, including the Ark Ventures team, Get Further has scaled its work ten-fold to meet the increased need this year. By the end of the academic year, the charity will have matched over 1,000 students to top tutors across five regions and will have delivered 8,000 tuition sessions. Approximately 8 in 10 of the young people are from a disadvantaged background.
The Get Further tuition has had a tangible, positive impact on their education. Results for students with a Get Further tutor who sat exams in November were 12% higher than the national average. Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive: students report that they feel they are making progress towards the grade they need to unlock their future education or career goals.
Get further works with students like Maan, who is 17 and studying English at a college in the South East. At the start of his Get Further tuition, Maan was unsure whether he would be able to learn remotely and that he would struggle with the texts as he didn’t read a lot of books. However, after the first month of tuition, he felt it was helping him to understand everything in his normal college lessons, and as he grew in confidence, he was able to read longer extracts out loud. He ended the programme by saying:
“I recommend anyone to have tuition. I’ve enjoyed it so much and it has hugely increased my confidence in English. My grammar, punctuation and reading skills have improved, and I’m now confident that I will have great results and am hoping to progress further in my education. I want a career in Cyber Security, and I know that passing my GCSE English Language exam is an important part in making this happen.”
“This is honestly one of the best experiences – my tutor is amazing. I have high hopes this year.”
Iqra, 17, Maths
Get Further has worked closely with colleges and sixth forms, helping to source technology during lockdowns and sharing results from online assessments and feedback from tutors, to support teachers with awarding grades this summer. The charity plans to continue to expand to help even more students get further in the next academic year.
To find out more about Get Further, or if you are interested in running a tutoring programme or working as a tutor in 2021/22, visit www.getfurther.org.uk