The proportion of young people saying that they have received private tuition has remained high over the last year, with Londoners most likely to have had extra teaching, according to a new Sutton Trust survey.

Nearly one in four 11-16 year olds at state schools in England and Wales indicated that their parents had paid for them to have extra help with their lessons. Polling by Ipsos MORI for the Sutton Trust shows that 24% of all young people in 2013 said they had received private or home tuition at some stage in their school career, compared with 18% in 2005 and 23% in 2012.

Those numbers are much higher for young people in London. 40% of Londoners had received some extra tuition over their school careers, with 24% saying they had benefited from extra coaching in the last year alone. By contrast, only 9% of Welsh pupils had ever receivedany private or home tuition, including 5% over the last year.

Analysis by the private tutoring website, First Tutors,earlier this year suggested that the typical cost of a private tutor is now £22 an hour, with the national average hourly rate ranging from £20 for primary and secondary school tuition, to over £26 for university level tuition. In thissurvey, 31% of students from better off families had received some private tuition, compared to just 15% from less well-off families, based on a family affluence scale.

The Sutton Trust’s sister charity, the Education Endowment Foundation, is currently testing the impact of offering youngsters from low income backgrounds private tuition through its £263,000 funding of an evaluation of the work of the Manchester-based charity, the Tutor Trust.

The Tutor Trust business model aims to make tuition affordable to schools in challenging circumstances, as well as make the Trust financially self-sufficient in the long run. The Tutor Trust selects and trains able university students and recent graduates to deliver tuition in challenging schools. Tutors are paid for their work, but deliver one in every seven lessons free of charge.

Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the Education Endowment Foundation, said today: “Private tuition is booming, particularly in London, despite the fact that many families have been forced to tighten their belts over recent years.

“Parents naturally want to do the best for their children. Providing private tuition for them puts those children whose parents can’t afford it at a disadvantage. That’s why it is so crucial that we find a successful way to ensure that the learning gap is narrowed for less advantaged children. We intend that our work at the Education Endowment Foundation with the Tutor Trust will provide a way of bringing one-to-one and small group tuition to
pupils from low and lower middle income backgrounds.”


1. The Sutton Trust is a foundation set up in 1997, dedicated to improving social mobility through education. It has published over 135 research studies and funded and evaluated programmes that have helped hundreds of thousands of young people of all ages, from early years through to Access to the Professions.

2. The Education Endowment Foundation is a charity set up in 2011 by the Sutton Trust as lead foundation in partnership with Impetus Trust, with a Department for Education grant of £125m. It is dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement. Since its launch the EEF has awarded £28.7 million to 56 projects working with over 300,000 pupils in over 1,800 schools across England. More details of EEF’s work with the Tutor Trust can be found at

3. The Sutton Trust added questions to Ipsos MORI’s 2013 Young People Omnibus.  The findings are based on data from a representative sample of 2,595 11-16 year olds attending maintained schools in England and Wales. The research was conducted in a sample of schools, with pupils filling out paper, self-completion questionnaires under supervision by Ipsos MORI’s interviewers. Fieldwork was conducted between 1 February and 19 April 2013. Data has been weighted by school year, gender and region to match the profile of school children across England and Wales. On private tuition, pupils were asked “When, if at all, have you received private or home tuition?” The same question was asked in the 2005 omnibus and in each year from 2009 onwards:

Year Received private tuition at some point
2013 24%
2012 23%
2011 23%
2010 20%
2009 20%
2005 18%

4.The First Tutors survey was published in March 2013 and can be accessed at

5. The family affluence scale consists of simple, non-intrusive questions about economic circumstances rather than directly asking about parents’ occupation, education and income, as these have been shown to have a better response rate with young people.  The FAS is compiled by asking pupils how many family holidays were taken during the past year, the number of family cars, vans or trucks owned, the number of family computers and whether they had their own bedrooms.

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