Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    Zoë Sophie

English Specialist


As you are working with children, do you have a police check?


Yes – this is called a DBS check (formerly known as a CRB check). I have mine through my teaching job, which is annually renewed.

I can provide you with my DBS number if you would like to verify it.


May I verify your degree and teaching qualifications?


Absolutely! I have a folder of all my qualifications available for inspection.

Due to COVID-19 all face to face lessons have been migrated online

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to engage in track and trace I have migrated all tutees online to Zoom to ensure safety. This policy will be reviewed over the course of the academic year.

Face to face tutoring


As you are to work with my child – may I come in and meet you first?


For the first FREE session I ask parents to accompany their child so we may discuss educational requirements.

During this session I also present the ‘tutoring agreement’ which explains how tutoring works and what is required of both tutor, student and parents for success.

Parents are welcome and encouraged to be present for all subsequent sessions (if they wish). I provide refreshments in a comfortable waiting area where tuition may be observed.


How often are tutoring sessions? Must they be weekly?


I recommend weekly sessions as this keeps the learning fresh and enables maximum progress.

Some students see me twice a week for intensive learning, whilst others have fortnightly sessions to balance tutoring with a heavy schedule.


1-2-1 tutoring is expensive. Are there other options for those on a tight budget?


Whilst the weekly costs of tutoring aren’t cheap, it is worth thinking about the alternatives.

You could try to find a cheaper tutor (of course that’s an option) – but do they come with the relevant experience, credentials and testimonials?

What are the costs of weekly tutoring sessions versus the costs of missing the grade on the GCSE? Or, worse still – failing and having to spend much time and money on resits?

Obviously that is a decision you need to weigh up when looking for the right tutor for you or your child.

As well as offering tutoring, I am currently creating a GCSE English Language course. This will be a cost-effective solution for those happy to learn online.

I also have the capacity to teach two students at once for half the price (each) of my 1-2-1 rate. However, this relies on mutual need, abilities, time slot and on parent coordination. Feel free to contact me directly to enquire about this possibility. 


What information ought to be known to aid tutoring?


There are various useful facts I need to know about my tutees. These include but are not limited to the following: 

  • Exam board
  • GCSE subjects (English Language only or both?)
  • Class set
  • Mock grades (if mocks sat)
  • Class set (if classes are streamed by ability)

It is helpful to liaise with the classroom teacher and (sometimes) the Head of English before embarking on tutoring to get an idea of a student’s strengths and weaknesses.

I am happy to stay in touch with classroom teachers to work with them on getting the best outcome for students.


Should I bring anything for the first / subsequent session(s)?


It is advisible to bring English exercise books, copies of set texts and any work to date to help inform current progress and future goals for the first session.

Students do bring current work to subsequent sessions, but we work out of a separate exercise book to that of the classroom teacher.


How may I pay you for tutoring?


If you’re coming to me face to face – many students and parents pay in cash. However, online payments are also an option.

Payment may be made in advance or on the same day as the tutoring session is scheduled to begin.

Online tutoring


How does online tutoring work? Surely it’s not as good as face to face?


You would be surprised. Online tutoring is easy, convenient and secure.

All session are recorded on Zoom where parents may keep a watchful eye.

Unlike face to face tutoring, there’s no reason not to learn – bad weather, car problems, parental double-bookings – nothing stands in the way as long as tutor and student are willing and available.

And if you’re still not sure whether it’ll work – try booking yourself in for the first online session FREE.


There are a lot of ‘online’ tutors out there? What makes you different?


If you wish to find out more about my experience and credentials please feel free to read about me and to see what makes me different to other online tutors.

I’ve spent years in education, perfecting my knowledge and teaching and the results speak for themselves.

As an online tutor – you’re getting the same quality of service as face to face tutoring, except without the need to drive to get to me.


If students are having to write in their GCSE exams, how can online tutoring (where they type) help them?


Just because students need to write in their exams doesn’t mean they cannot benefit from:

  • sharing documents online
  • observing annotations written using the graphics tablet
  • co-editing documents, simultaneously 
  • communicating online
  • sharing educational video content
  • walking ‘talking’ mock preparation
  • teacher marking of exemplar responses
  • SPaG focused exercises

Students are already learning online via YouTube and similar platforms. Whilst this may seem new, online learning has been around for some time with many schools now beginning to embrace the possibilities.

Regardless of whether students have been granted the use of a computer in the exam or not – they must understand their set texts, how to de-code texts and the nature of the exam questions.

This can all be taught online – very easily.

For handwriting queries we may use the scanner to ascertain whether the writing is legible. 



What does a ‘first’ online tutoring session look like?


For the first FREE online session student (and where applicable) parent will converse with me online using Zoom, whilst I make notes on educational need.

I may demonstrate some shared documents, possibly some exemplar answers and discuss how I may help the student.

If everyone is happy to proceed a follow-up will occur once a ‘tutoring agreement’ has been signed. As an experienced tutor, agreements ensure that student, (parents) and tutor may take steps to ensure the best outcomes for learners.



Do students need to bring anything to online tutoring?


For the first session which is a FREE initial assessment it would help if either student or parent could email a copy of the student’s writing, preferably with teacher feedback attached.

This helps to provide a baseline of current attainment and informs future goals.

Still have a question? Ask me.

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