Retired teacher, 60, explains how he earns up to £2,500 a month 'Enjoyed it so much'

MARK Hemmings, a retired teacher, 60, took up tutoring to help children of parents he knew, but says: “I enjoyed it so much I developed it into my main business” and earns a healthy living in the process.

First Class Learning: A look at the tuition centres

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He told his private tutoring business earns him up to £2,500 a month and the hours he puts into it a week varies from 10 to 35 depending on whether exams are on the horizon or the exam season is over.

Mark spent 15 years as a classroom teacher before retiring and becoming a maths tutor.

He said taking up tutoring was “something of a snowball effect, originally helping children of my friends and co-workers, then feeling good when they share their exam results, which makes you want to help more students.”

Naturally, however, running this business hasn’t been easy sailing over the last 18 months due to the pandemic, lockdowns and school disruptions.

“Only now are things starting to get back to a sort of normality with parents wanting to use tuition again”, Mark said.

Mark, who lives in Stoke-on-Trent said: “Financially, it should be possible to do tuition as a job.

Business owner

Mark earns between £2,000 and £2,500 a month as a tutor (Image: Getty)

“However, the reality is that starting up a tuition business in January 2020, things started to get busy in the run-up to exams, then, everything stopped.

“The Government cancelled exams and schools close. This leads a small business to debt, high overdraft, credit card debt, lost savings needing to find alternative employment.

“The Covid situation has made it almost impossible to maintain tuition without the necessity of going into debt, losing earning potential and trying to tick over until things improve.”

New research from Tutorful, an online tutoring platform, has revealed that 78 percent of parents of secondary school children think the pandemic has had a negative effect on their child’s education.


The children themselves are just as worried about it, with 82 percent saying they are stressed about their education.

Nearly half of them worry that their child will miss out on future job opportunities because of this.

Parents of children at this age (11-16) think their child is behind around 14 schooling hours a week due to the pandemic.

All of these factors mean that six in 10 parents are now considering hiring a tutor for their child; they are willing to spend £41 an hour on average if it will improve their child’s chances.

Staggeringly, British parents have lost around 61 hours of sleep a month on average due to worries around their child’s education.

So the research shows that parents are no clambering for private tutors to give their children the help they need, so there is light at the end of the tunnel for Mark after plunging himself into debt to see his business through lockdown.

People traditionally looked forward to retirement years spent in comfort and ease, but this is less and less the case as the years roll on.

Increasingly, people are using their retirement years to work for a variety of reasons, many out of necessity rather than choice and more than one in 10 are choosing to do so in the shadow of the pandemic.

The most common reason for this was financial necessity, but many have also had ample time to reflect over lockdowns and want to go back to work for a sense of fulfilment.

William Murphy

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