Of course it would be ideal if your special needs child got all the teaching they needed at school, but it’s not always the case.


Even if your child gets plenty of support and can manage to stay afloat in mainstream school, they might need a little extra help. On the face of things, it may even look as if the goal of ‘inclusion’ has been achieved. But, because they have so much more on their plates than their classmates, extra tuition can really help them.

However, it’s entirely possible that they could benefit from some teaching assistance to make sure they reach their full potential.

A good tutor will deal with your child as an individual and assess their strengths and weaknesses accordingly. They can tailor teaching to provide exactly what your child needs.

Children with behavioural or social difficulties (such as autism) can often get huge benefits from working with a tutor who is attuned to exactly what they need. Pupils with reading or writing issues (such as dyslexia) thrive when a trained professional helps them find a way round their particular difficulties. Teaching in a different environment can be of great benefit to children with disabilities, impairments or physical needs.

If your son or daughter didn’t get a diagnosis – and all the crucial support that comes along with that – until they had been in school for a while, it may be they need to cover some of the basics anew. A tutor can help to make sure your child has a rock-solid grounding, perhaps in literacy and numeracy areas, in order that they can continue to make progress.

A pupil with difficulties can, on occasion, suffer from a lack of confidence. However, much they understand their special needs are not their fault, the fact that they are different from their peers can leave them feeling bad. Sessions with a tutor where they are set attainable goals and where they can monitor achievements can be an enormous confidence boost. Time with a tutor can let them see that learning can be an enjoyable and satisfying experience.

Sometimes all a child needs is extra time on a subject or topic. However, hard-pressed schools have not got the resources for this. A tutor – perhaps covering the same ground – provides a pupil with the luxury of extra time.

The flexibility of tutoring can be the key to success. Employing a tutor for a special needs child gives a level of adaptability that can make all the difference. A tutor that can respond to needs that can change on a daily basis means the teaching can be adapted accordingly. However good a school’s support, it is inevitably going to be bound by limiting parameters, such as the school building or school hours.

There are instances when a local authority might be persuaded to fund a tutor for a special needs child, particularly if the tutor provides something proscribed in the child’s Statement of Needs.

Finding the right tutor could mean the difference between success and failure in your child’s education.

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Joseph is a French and Spanish to English translator, language enthusiast, and blogger.