News & Insights 30 September 2021

Spotlight on Chester: Going from strength to strength in one of Action Tutoring’s newer cities

We want to reach as many pupils as possible to progress academically and so we were thrilled to expand into Chester earlier this year.

Chester is a vibrant city with important history (the best surviving Roman wall in Northern Europe), entertainment (Chester Zoo is the most visited wildlife attraction in the UK) and the oldest racecourse in the country and Britain’s oldest sporting venue in continual use.

As one of our newer regions, we started supporting young people in the area in early 2021 during the midst of the second Covid lockdown. It wasn’t an easy start as all the programmes had to begin online and with pupils logging in from home, while schools were such. However, delivery has gone from strength to strength since then.

Free school meals are available to children who have parents receiving benefits or are on incomes of less than £7,400 – so an increase in the number of children on free school meals can be an indicator of declining living standards. Evidence shows that pupils from low income families are less likely to perform well in school, since there are more obstacles in the way of their academic progress (such as lack of access to technology or extra resources).
Accessible tuition in areas like Chester is more important than ever. Our volunteer tutors are committed to making a difference and helping young people reach their full potential. With the help of our Programme Coordinators and the workbooks we provide, they are equipped to make tutoring sessions interesting and engaging.
We pride ourselves on our evidence-based approach to supporting pupils, using baseline assessments and progress checks to monitor the impact our tutoring is having and capturing the final exam results of our pupils and comparing against the national average for disadvantaged pupils.

The first schools we supported were in Helsby and Leftwich rather than in Chester city centre and because the programmes were online, it allowed pupils in these slightly more remote locations to experience the benefits of tutoring.

Fun fact: James Bond was born in Chester, well the current one was, Daniel Craig was born on 2nd March 1968.

Working with multiple schools across England has helped us recognise the needs of schools and better understand the demands and pressures that schools are under, especially after the pandemic. We are excited to continue building stronger relationships with schools and help them provide sustainable academic support to those who need it.

We do more than just tutor. Our volunteers also serve as role models, motivating pills to overcome learning barriers and achieve their potential in life.

‘’The flexibility and desire to accommodate and work with our staff and pupils prior to and throughout the pandemic has been first rate. Communication and clarity of intent have always been clear and acted on swiftly, ensuring staff and pupils have been brilliantly supported. The commitment and desire to develop and advance our pupils has been superb.’’

Bohunt Worthing, Assistant Headteacher 

We’re committed to ensuring more and more pupils can receive the education they deserve. Here you can find more information about schools partnering with us.

As one of our newer regions, we are working hard to grow our volunteer tutor community in the area and are keen to engage more volunteers locally to support on our face-to-face programmes.

Are you interested in finding out more about volunteering with Action Tutoring? Read Nichola’s experience here!

Working closely with teachers, our Programme Coordinators are on hand to oversee delivery, manage any issues that may occur during our online or in-person tutoring sessions. They are all passionate about educational equality and work hard to ensure pupils gain the most from their tutoring sessions with our volunteers.

We are well represented in the region by our programme coordinators in Chester, the excellent Cathy, who has been with Action Tutoring since August 2020 and the awesome Anna, who also joined us in 2020. Cathy grew up in the North West and is a fully qualified teacher whilst Anna was previously a trainer in safeguarding.

Always welcoming, Cathy and Anna need your support. So, if you live in Chester, are passionate about supporting young people and looking for a new and rewarding volunteering opportunity, sign up to tutor in our schools today.