So, You Want to Start a Tutoring Organization? Part 3: Safety, Expectations, Accessibility, and Evaluation

In this National Student Support Accelerator video, we’ll cover some more of the logistics of starting a tutoring organization, focusing on your program’s evaluation, accessibility, safety, and expectations. 

This video will first take into account the expectations that your program will have for your tutors, focusing specifically on the legal obligations of your program, and the responsibility of your program to set clear parameters with your tutors. It will next discuss the importance and types of background checks necessary for tutors, how to evaluate your program on both a strategic and data-driven level, and how to ensure that your program is accessible to all students in need. Lastly, this video will discuss how to move forward with your program once these aforementioned details are worked out. 

The expectations that you set for your tutors are crucial to ensuring the safety of your program’s students, and to establishing your program as a legitimate and committed provider of academic instruction. It is important to follow state and federal laws like the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, and Protection of Pupil’s Rights Amendment. Additionally, hosting a tutor orientation that outlines these expectations can help to hold tutors accountable. 

Inclusive in your program’s commitment to safety should be the requirement of background and reference checks, program confidentiality, and having a policy written by an attorney on these policies and expectations. Note that background checks provided by private parties may be less reliable than the organizations listed here. It is also important to be cognizant of your program’s physical security, which includes physical device security, password security, and digital systems security. Doing things like making sure that login information is stored safely, and that student data documents are not left out for others to see, are key ways to ensuring that the privacy and confidentiality systems that your program has in place are actively maintained. 

When considering your program’s overall strategies for evaluation, make sure that you are constantly evaluating what is and isn’t working and taking into account the difference that students’ demographics can make on evaluation results. Non-academic measures of impact can include what students’ experiences with their tutor are like or how students’ enthusiasm for their schoolwork has changed. When tutors reflect on their sessions, asking questions like “How will I plan future sessions differently based on my results” and “How will I provide targeted reteaching and practice to address specific learning barriers” can help tutors to provide the best instruction possible. 

To evaluate your program, collecting Personally Identifiable Information like students’ names, demographics, and educational records through tools like interviews, assessments, and rubrics can provide greater insight into your program’s successes and challenges. 

When considering your program’s accessibility, survey and conversational data can provide crucial information. Tutors should question how well their students can perceive, interpret, and comprehend their materials in order to identify things like the importance of visual versus spoken descriptions of visuals, what vocabulary may need to be taught beforehand, and how to utilize multiple teaching mediums for certain concepts. Tutor matches should take into account accessibility issues, and for long-lasting programs, matches may need to be re-evaluated over time. 

After taking into account these logistics and developing the recruitment, training, and matching systems that work for your program, it is important to maintain a culture that values communication, flexibility, feedback, and constant evaluation. It is also important to note that tutor oversight may vary according to what your program model is. 

Thank you for watching this National Student Support Accelerator Video. To find the complete collection of Accelerator tutoring tools, including those utilized in this video, please visit the link here. Thank you! 

Link To Tools:

Links to Slide-Specific Tools: