How do you encourage attendance in tutoring? 

Since the pandemic, poor attendance has been an issue. Pupil absenteeism in England soared to 22% by 2023. Tutee attendance is essential for learners to keep up with the curriculum, understand key concepts, and catch up with learning. 

Evidence shows that tuition can boost progress by three to five months. Learners need to attend sessions regularly to benefit from tutoring sessions. Regular attendance at tutoring sessions also plays an important role in shaping learners’ social and emotional outcomes. 

Schools that can work tutoring into the school day often see the best attendance rates.

Our statistics show that if a learner attends at least 85% of their tuition sessions, there are much better outcomes.

Getting started 

Some pupils will resent tutoring or feel embarrassed that they need extra support. Many learners seek tutoring due to challenges faced in the classroom. Besides leading by example, educators can help encourage learners to attend by:

  • explaining to learners why attendance is important
  • setting expectations for attendance
  • delivering engaging sessions that are relevant to the learner’s needs and interests

Educators should hold learners accountable for their attendance and performance. Setting expectations and tracking progress can help learners stay committed. 

How to boost attendance

Work with teachers

The more people you can involve in a learner’s tutoring journey, the more likely they are to attend. When teachers understand that educators are there to enhance what they do by giving individual attention to the learners who need it most, they can encourage learners to attend tutoring sessions. 

Build a rapport

Like learning in a classroom depends on the teacher-pupil relationship, strong relationships between tutors and learners increase attendance. Start sessions with check-ins to build rapport. Provide support when learners face challenges, as this can make a difference in their attendance and success. 

Respect and trust are two main factors in establishing rapport with a learner. Have an open dialogue with them throughout the sessions by actively listening and responding thoughtfully. 

Create Individual Learning Plans (ILPs)

Pupils are more likely to attend tutoring sessions if the sessions are engaging and tailored to them. All learners are unique, with different strengths and weaknesses. Begin by assessing their current understanding of the subject matter. Consider the most effective communication methods for your learners. Design a personalised learning plan that targets areas for improvement while reinforcing their strong points.

Embrace tech 

Educators who adapt to technology can better engage with their learners. Educators can use digital tools and online materials to enhance the learning experience.  An online whiteboard can help your learner visualise key concepts and work through problems. 

Prepare for sessions

High-quality tutoring keeps learners engaged. Preparing for each session ensures you can address learners’ needs, making the learning experience more impactful. Another way to ensure your tutoring is to inquire about the ongoing training and support. 

Use positive reinforcement

Recognise and celebrate achievements, as this boosts confidence and motivation. Positive reinforcement techniques can be transformational for pupil behaviours and outcomes. This can also increase attendance, a fundamental factor in determining its success. 

Give constructive feedback 

Regular feedback helps your learner understand their progress and areas that need attention. Building confidence is key, as learners are more likely to be successful if they feel confident in their knowledge and abilities. 

Simple tips to encourage tutoring attendance

  • Remind students about sessions Use personalised timetables, assemblies, and technology alerts to keep pupils informed about upcoming tutoring sessions.
  • Put in place a buddy system in small group tutoring. Group learners into a ‘buddy system’ of pairs or teams. Reward each pupil for their partner’s attendance to foster accountability.
  • Experiment with scheduling. Hold sessions at different times of the day or days of the week, and track changes in attendance to find the most effective schedule for your learner. Be clear to communicate any changes. This might not work well for SEN learners, such as those with autism. 

Strategies to improve attendance

These strategies can help boost attendance and engagement in tutoring sessions.

Remind learners about tutoring sessions 

Use personalised timetables and technology alerts to remind learners of their upcoming tutoring sessions. Use different channels to send reminders, and base this on learner preference. This can be particularly useful for neurodiverse learners and those with special educational needs (SEN). 

Rewards and recognition

It won’t take learners long to see that academic advancement is the greatest incentive to keep up with tutoring sessions, but some learners are motivated by rewards. Reward students with good attendance records with incentives to create excitement about their tutoring. 

Attendance schemes can help educators set attendance expectations.  Rewards can communicate the importance of attendance to pupils, particularly in primary schools. Poor attendance can be addressed positively. They can also help motivate pupils. As a tutor working for Fleet Education, you can access schemes including: 

  • Star in a Jar Scheme for Primary to Lower Key Stage 2 pupils. Educators can print ‘A star in a jar’ and learners can cut out the stars and stick them on the jar each session.
  • The Superstar Award Scheme enables tutors to award stars at the end of each half-term to keep them on track and reward them for attendance. 
  • Bronze, Silver, and Gold Attendance Award Certificates can be used at the end of a tuition programme. 

    By implementing these strategies, educators can improve learner attendance and ensure they get the most out of their educational experience next term. Fleet Education Services is the UK’s largest specialist tuition provider.  If you’re interested in working with us as an educator, please get in touch.