National Tutoring Programme

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‘Primary Progress: Puppies and Pirates’ – NTP-funded tutoring programme for Years 5 and 6


  • You’ll know that tutoring has huge benefits for disadvantaged pupils[1]
  • The schools we work with know it does – we’re currently partnered with more than 100 schools across the North, providing tutoring support to help them close the attainment gap so pupils aren’t left behind.
  • We know it does – we’re the only tutoring provider in the UK with excellent outcomes from a Randomised Control Trial (commissioned by EEF).
  • Our charity’s staff team includes 12 former teachers and school leaders.
  • As part of the National Tutoring Programme, we’re offering two programmes of 15 one-hour tutoring sessions in Upper Key Stage 2 English and Maths. Sessions are easy to set up and most of the costs are met by NTP funding – meaning they can be as low as £4 per pupil per hour’s tutoring.
  • We offer flexible delivery of the tutoring blocks – one hour per week over 15 weeks or a seven-and-a-half week intensive intervention, offering two one-hour sessions per week.  Tutoring can be face-to-face in school or online.
  • This is targeted support, with measured progress, aiming to address the significant knowledge gaps due to lockdown.
  • The tutoring helps build fluency strategies to apply to problem solving.
  • To find out more contact Nick Bent:



The Tutor Trust: Who we are

We’re a Northern charity with a mission to ‘transform lives through tutoring’ and we’re passionate about fairness in education. Our ambition is to provide tutoring support to every child who needs it. This year is our 10th anniversary as a charity.

We know tutoring makes a difference. The Tutor Trust is the only tutoring organisation in the UK that has been through a large-scale Randomised Control Trial (RCT) and achieved positive results – pupils who received our tuition made an additional three months of progress in Maths compared with those in the control group, plus an additional two months of progress in Reading. 

Our partners the Education Endowment Foundation have awarded us ‘Promising Project’ status.

Our tutors include former teachers as well as students and graduates from local universities. We work in close partnership with school teams to understand and support delivery of their strategies around improved academic outcomes for disadvantaged pupils and vulnerable learners. 

We work flexibly, structuring high-quality tutoring programmes that are bespoke for each particular cohort of pupils and their needs.  Since lockdown we have delivered both face-to-face tutoring (in schools for the most vulnerable young people) and online, via the Vedamo learning platform. Online tutoring can be in school or at home.

And we’re based in the North. Our tutors live and work in the Greater Manchester, Merseyside and Leeds/Bradford city regions, so we understand the unique challenges schools here are facing.


The National Tutoring Programme offer

Since November 2nd 2020, we have been an official Tuition Partner of the National Tutoring Programme.  We are already working with more than 800 pupils at more than 50 Primary schools across the North to help close the attainment gap.

We know that the effect of lockdown is being keenly felt in schools, especially amongst those pupils moving from Year 5 to 6, or those transitioning from Year 6 to 7.  We have therefore created two special programmes of tutoring, one for Upper KS2 Maths and one for Upper KS2 English.  These programmes each comprise 15 hours of tutoring that are aimed at delivering the key skills that pupils in Y5 and Y6 most need.

We collaborate with you to tailor the sessions, differentiating for each individual pupil and delivering tutoring face-to-face in school or online to pupils in school or at home. Sessions are typically run one-to-one or in small groups of three.

Each hour-long session includes an outline of either learning focuses or learning objectives, plus pre-prepared resources for our tutors to plan targeted, differentiated learning for individual pupil’s needs.  


The cost of the NTP sessions

The NTP is heavily subsidising these blocks of tutoring, meaning the cost per pupil for each 15-hour programme can be as low as £60 – or £4 an hour. This cost can be met by the school through Pupil Premium or catch-up funding.

Alongside that, our partnership with the Hg Foundation means that, in some instances, we are also able to provide free laptops to pupils for home study.


How we work with schools

Each school is partnered with one of our experienced School Coordinators in your city, who will help make all the arrangements.  In addition, the same tutor will deliver all 15 hours of each block of tutoring to each pupil group, to ensure consistency and to allow pupils to build trust with the tutors.

We are flexible in terms of delivery to suit your school and your pupils’ needs. We can deliver the sessions either one or two hours a week, ideally at the same time each week, either over seven-and-a-half weeks or 15 weeks.


The tutoring programmes – ‘Puppies and Pirates’

  • Each tutoring programme offers 15 one-hour sessions of high-quality, structured, deep-dive sessions in either Upper Key Stage 2 English or UKS2 Maths lessons.
  • The Maths programme is ‘pirate’ themed and the English programme is ‘puppy’ themed, to make the learning engaging and fun for pupils.
  • Each of the sessions has been written by our experienced, time-served, qualified teachers / senior school leaders.
  • The subject materials are the key building blocks in English and Maths that address missed learning (reading, sentence level, number work). 
  • Lessons build sequentially and consolidate learning / strategies that focus on helping pupils to become independent learners (metacognitive approaches).
  • Emphasis is on teaching key vocabulary.
  • Use of models and worked examples.
  • Broken down into small steps with engaging theme throughout.

You can read more about the content of each programme on pages 5 and 6.


Measuring impact

Our partner schools – and Tutor Trust itself – always track the impact and effectiveness of our tutoring programmes, and ‘puppies and pirates’ is no exception.

To effectively measure the impact of the tuition packages, we will start the sessions with a baseline assessment via the online tool Learning by Questions (LbQ), which is supported by Sir Kevan Collins, the Education Recovery Commissioner. We would then use pre- and post-session question sets to match the English and Maths objectives covered.

This data enables our tutors to understand each pupil’s progress, plan lessons effectively and differentiate for pupils individually as they get to know them.  The data will also be shared with classroom teachers and school leaders.


CPD for Tutors

Our team of teachers on staff are providing specialist additional training for tutors on how best to prepare and deliver the ‘puppies and pirates’ programmes. 

This training will cover Learning by Questions (LbQ) and the Tutor Trust’s extensive resources bank for tutors, plus tips and techniques on how to motivate pupils throughout the 15 hours of tuition and how to tailor each hour to individual pupil’s needs.


Safeguarding at Tutor Trust

We take Safeguarding very seriously, both for face-to-face tutoring and online.  Our policies and practices on Safeguarding are fully compliant with the KCSIE Guidance and NSPCC advice.  Our Safeguarding protocols have been independently reviewed and approved by the National Tutoring Programme.

All Tutor Trust tutors must complete updated Safeguarding training at the start of each academic year before they can take on any tutoring assignments. This is compulsory for every tutor who works for the Tutor Trust.  Similarly, any tutors who we recruit during the academic year must complete this Safeguarding training before they can begin any assignments.  All tutors and staff at Tutor Trust have an enhanced DBS certificate.

For online tutoring, we have additional procedures and resources in place for Safeguarding, to support teaching staff, tutors, parents/carers and pupils themselves. 




‘Puppies!’ – supporting your pupils’ attainment in English

The 15 hour-long UKS2 English tutoring sessions have a puppy theme and can be delivered online or face-to-face.  They cover:

Four grammar sessions based on sentence structure:

  1. Words, phrases, clauses, conjunctions, simple sentences and main clauses
  2. Subordinate clauses and complex sentences
  3. Functions of sentences
  4. Adverbials and fronted adverbials

Eleven reading comprehension sessions:

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Vocabulary
  3. Retrieval
  4. Retrieval
  5. Inference
  6. Inference
  7. Inference
  8. Predicting
  9. Summarising
  10. Comparing/Explaining
  11. Application of strategies


Each session emphasises key vocabulary and teaches strategies that pupils need in order to answer different text types. There are opportunities for tutor modelling and pupils to practise and apply the strategies. 



‘Pirates!’ – supporting your pupils’ attainment in Maths


The 15 hour-long UKS2 Maths tutoring sessions have a pirate theme and can be delivered online or face-to-face. The sessions are broken down into three modules:


Module 1:

Lesson 1 Addition and Subtraction (inc. worded problems)

Lesson 2 Short Multiplication (inc. worded problems) 

Lesson 3 Long Division (inc. worded problems)

Lesson 4 Working with Decimals

Lesson 5 Introduction to Fractions

Lesson 6 Working with Fractions

Module 2:

Lesson 7 Order of Operations

Lesson 8 Factors, Multiples and Primes

Lesson 9 Introduction to Algebra

Lesson 10 Perimeter

Lesson 11 Area of rectangles (inc. compound shapes)

Lesson 12 Angle Properties

Module 3:

Lesson 13 Number (Problem Solving)

Lesson 14 Algebra (Problem Solving)

Lesson 15 Shape and Space (Problem Solving)

The sessions in Module 1 and 2 emphasise using Mastery approaches and developing reasoning and problem-solving skills, alongside fluency. The lessons contained within Module 3 target pupils who have already developed fluency within those individual topic areas. There are opportunities for tutor modelling and pupils to practise and apply the strategies.