Since moving from classroom teaching to tuition two years ago, one of the main aspects that I have found that is missing from my working life is access to a custom designed working space that suits both me and the students that I work with. After trying out a number of solutions, including hiring co-working office space I realised that in order to have the space that works for us as tutors I’d have to create it myself!
The Worthing TeachAllAboutIt Tuition Centre has been in development for a number of months and it is an enormously wonderful feeling to be able to share with you the results of all the hard work. In designing the centre, we have included the needs of a variety of tutors and students and adapted our plans to include the more recent requirement for social distancing.
Where Are We?
We’re located in 303 Tarring Road, Worthing on the ground floor of a delightful Victorian building that was once a sweet shop! As soon as we visited, we knew that this was the perfect place for us and our students. Being in West Worthing allows us to be away from the bustle of the town centre, but easily accessible by public transport as we’re 180m away from the train station!
Being close to West Worthing has also meant that we’re closer to many other small independent shops and the past few weeks has really opened my eyes to quite how many other small businesses there are locally. We’ve already discovered an absolutely fabulous small coffee shop, which does mean that my cinnamon bun intake may increase exponentially…
Finding suitable space away from the home for private tuition has been increasingly difficult, so we have purposely designed the front area of the centre to be used by local private tutors seeking a quiet & comfortable working space alongside their tutees (whether that is in person, or online).
Co-Working space is a flexible way to work within an office without the pressure (and cost!) of an ongoing contract, but with the benefits of a desk, WiFi, and the office kitchen. Tutors can hire a desk for just a day, or on a more regular basis with everything they need included (WiFi, refreshments, reception area). Co-Working space is available for tutors from 10am – 8pm with an option to reduce the cost through regular bookings.
Our Co-Working spaces are open plan and laid out to allow for social distancing. We have also reduced the number of bookings for each space to one per day to allow each “station” to be fully sanitised – tutors are given a “tutor pack” for the day including stationary (to keep) and a mug (returned & sanitised) to ensure that no equipment is shared.
Student Study Support
Not all tuition is the same, and our homework / study clubs run on Tuesday & Thursdays for 1-3 hours after school providing a quiet working space for a range of subjects with a qualified teacher on hand to provide supervision and support where needed.
Each student is assigned an individual, adjustable desk creating a comfortable environment for them whether they are completing Maths, English, or even Art! At present, the desks are arranged to allow for students to face away from others and we will continue to monitor public health advice on desk positions.
Our study club runs from 3.30pm – 6.30pm each Tuesday & Thursday during term time. The majority of the sessions are supervised by me (Holly), but will occasionally be run by other fully qualified tutors. A second member of staff is always in the building.
Online Tuition & Private Exams
An additional two “office” areas have been created at the back of the centre for online tuition and the ability for students to sit on-screen exams.
The middle room is occupied by me (Holly!) where I run my Computer Science tuition alongside supporting other tutors through the Tutor’s Teaching & Learning Network, and run online CPD for teachers on behalf of NCCE. This room also contains two exam stations for IT exams. This space also allows me to support students who need a little more quiet during in-person tuition, or where lessons need to be less formal – there’s even space to study on the floor! (… think robotics!)
The back room is occupied by Jay Shurey of TeachAllAboutIt – Film & JQS Media where he runs his Film studies tuition and distance learning courses. We’re absolutely delighted to have Jay as a permanent fixture in the centre!
Accessibility is a huge factor for anywhere that I work (especially as a wheelchair user), so even though the centre is in an old Victorian building, we’ve added lots of accessibility features. You can see a full accessibility statement here where details of the centre including physical access are listed in full.
TeachAllAboutIt was founded on the idea that education should be accessible for all, including students and teachers. Where a tutor or student requires additional access, we will always be willing to discuss potential improvements.
A Note on COVID Safety
In order to open safely to the public, we have introduced a number of precautions to increase protection for tutors, students, and their families.
- We are currently unable to provide students with laptops although they are welcome to bring their own pre-charged devices.
- We request that all students over age 11 and parents wear a mask within the tuition centre unless medically exempt.
- Hand sanitizer is provided and we ask that everyone uses this upon entry and exit.
- Each student will be provided with a dedicated study pack including pens, pencils, & paper which will be stored within a plastic folder which is cleaned after use to prevent cross-contamination.
- Students will be provided with refreshments as part of the study club. All refreshments are pre-wrapped to meet hygiene standards.
- We have reduced the capacity and placement of study desks to enable social distancing.
- Desks & chairs are fully disinfected with alcohol-based wipes after each use.