Indian tutors teach Mathematics to students in UK school

Ashmount Primary in north London has become the first school to avail this service called BrightSpark Education, started by set up by UK-based entrepreneur Tom Hooper.

The 6 standard pupils of the school, are provided with a headset log while they log on to a website to have an on screen interaction with the teacher. It costs the school £12 per hour per pupil compared with about £40 for private tutors in the capital.

The tutors, all maths graduates with teaching experience are employed on a full time basis and each one undergoes security checks.

"I was a tutor myself to make a bit of extra money when I was at university and after I graduated... But paying for additional tuition can be very expensive, in London you can be spending up to £40 an hour," Hooper said.

"It just seemed to make sense when I thought of providing live learning online, which could be flexible and engaging."All tutors are trained in English maths curriculum and the service can be tailored to each child as the teacher sees fit. The teacher are paid £7 an hour.

Ashmount assistant headteacher Rebecca Stacey told the Times Educational supplement that the pupils' understanding of the subject has improved significantly after using the service.

"We try to keep every pupil with the same tutor. The kids really enjoy it. It is a different way of approaching the subject with children who might find it harder to engage with maths," Stacey told the newspaper.

She added that the school was approached by the agency to use this service on a pilot-project basis but after receiving the positive response from the students the school is likely to roll it out to the 4th and 5the standard students.

Although outsourcing office work in the subcontinent by private sector is not new but this experimentation in teaching field is believed to have been carried out for first time.
However, director of London University's Institute of Education Dylan Wiliam cautioned that such a system had its own dangers. "It will depend on how good their (tutors) English is... They will also need to understand cultural conventions of this country," he said.

There is a shortage of Maths tutors in UK. Maths graduates are offered 5000 pounds for postgraduate teacher training courses. While UK had some 5,980 maths graduate last year in India their number was around 690,000

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