The impact the school closures will have on our pupils is significant. It’s our ambition to continue as many online tutoring programmes as possible during lockdown to support our pupils when they need it most. Online tutoring means that you can tutor from the comfort of your own home.
We aim to deliver in person sessions once schools reopen, so please do complete our application form if you are interested in volunteering with us. Your help will make a difference.
1) Fill out our volunteer online application form
2) Attend a training session and complete a DBS check
3) Select the programme you’d like to attend
Join us as a volunteer and support disadvantaged pupils in Birmingham, Bristol, Liverpool and Wirral, London, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Sussex.
We are now offering online tutoring, which is a great option for anyone on a busy schedule, less able to get to school locations or continuing to keep their distance from groups of people. Online tutoring also allows us to expand and recruit tutors from outside of our regions.
Frequently asked questions
If you can’t find the answer to your question below, do get in touch via our main email.
Action Tutoring partners with primary and secondary schools to deliver tutoring programmes for pupils preparing for their GCSEs and SATs in English and maths. A 'programme' means a term of tutoring at a partner school, with sessions at the same time each week.
As a volunteer, you will be able to choose which programme you are allocated to. For the pupils, all tutoring takes place at school. If you decide to tutor on one of our in person programmes, you will attend these sessions in schools, where you will be working in a team alongside other volunteer tutors. For our online programmes, tutors work remotely and support pupils in English or maths in a virtual classroom.
Take a look at our Volunteer Handbook for more details about tutoring with us.
We ask you to commit to attending the same school at the same time each week for an hour, over the course of a school term (8-10 weeks). You will need to attend one of our central training sessions and be willing to put some time into preparing for your sessions.
Consistency and continuity is really important for the delivery of the tutoring to enable our pupils to achieve; you must be able to commit to attending every session before signing up to a programme.
Please note that tutoring sessions usually take place before, shortly after or during the school day. There are occasional tutoring opportunities on Saturdays, but we do not run tutoring sessions in the evenings. Our programmes run during the school terms so there are no opportunities available over July and August.
Due to school closures we must pause all ‘in person’ programmes during lockdown, however it’s our ambition to continue as many online tutoring programmes as possible to support our pupils when they need it most.
We have been officially approved by the National Tutoring Programme to deliver tutoring to pupils at home. We also piloted our home-based approach, as part of a national evaluation of online tutoring delivery, in 2020. We are currently in contact with our school partners to discuss arrangements for pupils to receive home-based tutoring during the lockdown.
We are therefore still in need of volunteers to deliver online tutoring, as well as tutors to ready to deliver in person sessions when schools reopen.
Yes, you can! We have recently launched our online tutoring platform, meaning you'll be able to join one of our tutoring programmes from anywhere in the country.
Please do apply via our normal online application form - https://www.tfaforms.com/332860 - you can select 'None of the above' under the 'Region' question. This means you'll be able to support as an online only tutor. We'll invite you to some online training and process your DBS for you before you get started in the autumn.
A desktop or laptop computer (not a tablet), a webcam (inbuilt or external) and internet access (e.g Wi-Fi).
Online tutoring will take place in a virtual classroom, using our online delivery platform, Vedamo. Full Vedamo training will be provided to all tutors before their first online session.
Unfortunately, we are unable to accept applications from tutors living outside of England, Scotland and Wales. This is due to being unable to run a DBS check. If you are a tutor based in the UK but are travelling elsewhere, you can only be abroad (and delivering sessions) for up to six weeks whilst tutoring on a programme.
We have carefully refined our tutoring model for nearly a decade. We know what we do works, so we won’t be changing anything about our approach.
The way we deliver our tutoring and the responsibilities of our tutors will not change. However we expect to partner with lots more schools as a result of this programme, which means there will be lots more tutoring opportunities available to choose from.
To ensure no child is left behind, we need more tutors. We know you’re not able to volunteer right now but can you help to spread the word? Please share our opportunities with any individuals or organisations who could support us through volunteering. With online and face-to-face programmes available over a range of days and times, it’s never been easier to take part.
If you are a maths tutor you will be covering the basic skills of maths including percentages, fractions, algebra and probability, among others. We have a range of workbooks which are tailored to the ability level of your pupil(s) and include all the answers and workings to support you.
If you are an English tutor, we primarily look to focus on supporting pupils with their reading and writing skills. This could mean helping with spelling, punctuation and grammar, essay writing skills, reading comprehension, and more. We have a range of workbooks to support you with this.
You can apply to become a volunteer tutor all year-round! The first step is to complete our online application form - make sure you include all relevant experience and qualifications. We might then contact you to arrange a telephone interview with you, to chat through your answers and ask a question relating to the subject you've offered to tutor. Following this process our volunteers are required to complete a DBS check, which Action Tutoring will process, and attend a two hour training session. After the training session we will share with you a list of our current tutoring opportunities, so that you can select one that suits your schedule.
An enhanced DBS check is a criminal record check, which Action Tutoring are required to carry out for all volunteers. DBS checks enable us to make safe recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with children and young people.
Action Tutoring complies with the relevant DBS Code of Practice and undertakes to treat all applicants for positions fairly.
You can read more about the DBS process and what's required here.
You will be given training, resources and will have the support of the Action Tutoring staff, including a Programme Coordinator, who will attend tutoring sessions. If you would like to talk to one of our existing tutors to find out what's involved, please email [email protected].
We look for volunteers who have or are studying for a degree (in any subject) and have a B grade (or above) at A Level (or equivalent qualifications) in the subject they wish to tutor. English or maths-related A Level subjects are also considered, such as: history, politics or sociology (for English tutors) and physics, chemistry and economics (for maths tutors).
This is to ensure that you are confident and comfortable with the topics you will be tutoring.
If your qualifications do not match these requirements, we would still encourage you to apply. Once we review your answers we may then arrange a call with you to find out more.
We take all previous experience into consideration, so please do include anything you think might be relevant.
Unfortunately we are unable to accept applications from students who haven’t yet completed their A Levels or equivalent. This is due to safeguarding issues, as well as level of subject knowledge.
We would would therefore encourage you to only apply once you have completed your studies.
As a tutor, you need to have good communication skills and be a fluent English speaker. You’ll need to be willing to make your sessions engaging and interactive. Working with young people requires patience, commitment and resilience – experience working with young people is preferable but not essential.
In addition to helping a young person, we believe there are many benefits for our volunteers. These include: gaining valuable experience in a school (particularly useful for aspiring teachers), a boost to your CV, giving back to your community, a chance to improve your communications and problem solving skills and the opportunity to meet like-minded people.
Hear from Simrat (New York University student) about her experience volunteering with Action Tutoring in London last year:
Our model has always been to use volunteers. We believe in harnessing the potential of social power to 'do good' and 'give back', without financial reward. It is central to our mission. We have an inspiring and diverse pool of tutors including corporate employees, retired individuals and university students who bring huge benefits to their pupils. They support us because they believe in our mission and share our values.
We are a charity and a not-for-profit organisation. Funding we receive from the Government as part of the National Tutoring Programme (NTP) covers our central costs, for example, recruiting and training our tutors and employing Programme Coordinators to manage school relationships. We believe passionately in empowering volunteers to make a difference, at a time when support is needed most, and are continuing with our volunteer-based model.
We want to continue doing what we do for years to come, so it is essential to maintain a sustainable model that can continue with or without government funding.
Within certain guidelines, we are happy to provide a reference once you have completed a programme. You can view our references policy in our policies and procedures booklet here.
Yes we can cover reasonable travel expenses, up to £5 per session. Travel expenses are reimbursed once you have completed a programme, rather than on a week by week basis. Please see our travel expenses policy in our policies and procedures booklet here, for more information. Some volunteers chose not to claim to further support us in our work as a small charity, and this is always appreciated but not expected.