How to select a tutor for your child
Choose a communicator
"The tutor must possess a mastery of the subject material and be able to present it in a simple way," says Adrian Serna, associate director of Cardinal Education in Palo Alto, Calif. "Look for a tutor who will not only help one's child academically, but also inspire him or her, leaving a positive, lasting impression. A tutor is there to teach life lessons in addition to helping academically, so they must also be an excellent role model."
Build on basics
"If you focus on the basics [of a subject], it's much easier to help a student understand and build off that foundation," says Ken Sponagle, owner of Academic Learning Center in Clearwater, Fla. "Once they understand the basics, their confidence is built up so they know they can do it on their own."
Weigh your options
Carefully evaluate your needs to decide whether you want to hire a freelance tutor or an affiliated tutoring company.
"Freelance tutors often charge less than tutoring companies," says Nathan Vigil, director of Atlanta Tutors in Atlanta. "But they can come with greater risks. If the tutor is not a good match for the student or the quality isn't satisfactory, you have little recourse. If you decide to use a company, ask about how long they've been in business, what reviews they've received and what guarantees they provide."
Find the right price
Don't be afraid to shop around. Tutoring can range from $25 to $45 per hour. "The price can also vary depending on the type of tutoring and the level," Sponagle says. "Some places may even want you to sign a contract."