ASCL comment on National Tutoring Programme evaluation findings

Julie McCulloch, Director of Policy at the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the findings from the National Foundation for Educational Research’s evaluation of the National Tutoring Programme.
We welcome this evaluation. As the National Tutoring Programme ended up being pretty much the only way in which the government provided additional funding for education recovery, it’s crucial that it is effective. 

“The evaluation suggests that there were benefits to pupils receiving support under the tuition partners strand of the programme, but the evidence for the academic mentors strand appears less certain. 

“We agree that ongoing evaluation should take place to explore which models of tutoring are most effective for which pupils and in what circumstances. If tutoring is to become an ongoing part of the education landscape, as the government hopes, it is vital we understand as much as possible about how to use it effectively. 

“But the biggest barrier to an effective tutoring system is the fact it is only partially being funded by the government. At a time when schools and colleges already face a funding crisis, more and more leaders are telling us they simply cannot afford to continue to provide tutoring. 

“This report provides even more evidence that a government which was serious about helping children and young people to recover from the pandemic would properly fund a long-term programme of education recovery, with tutoring a key part of this. Instead, they now appear to be planning to cut spending on education even further. Children and young people deserve better