It may be a little bit of old news, which has resurfaced since Covid lockdowns. It sure is far from home, but news from Kuwait has recently sent waves of shock through the world of private tuition – and it’s something that’s causing some controversy among private tutors and students.
Believe it or not, the country’s ministry ordered all publicly employed teachers to sign on the dotted line to say that they will not take on private students in 2014. Bizarrely, the reasoning behind this decision somehow makes it seem as though private tuition can have a negative effect on a child’s education and development. As an organisation that’s been providing private tutors for many years, we can tell you categorically that this is not the case in the UK. So what was the reason that Kuwait ministers banned private tutors? Read on to find out.
“Discouraging children from studying hard”
Are you sitting comfortably? Good – because the reason that the Kuwait officials have given for banning private tuition is that it discourages children from studying hard in order to achieve good results. This is the polar opposite to the opinion that many people in other countries hold; i.e. that private tuition is an excellent way to instil a child with a solid work ethic and give them the tools to make their school career a success. Many of our franchisees here at LCF and their teaching staff provide private tuition and have been party to success story after success story – and we have never seen a shred of evidence to suggest that such tuition actively discourages children from learning. In fact, quite the opposite is true.
Private Tutors: a financial burden?
The ministry of Kuwait has also stated that private tuition can be an unnecessary financial burden on children and/or their parents. Again, in all of the private tuition that we organise for children, it’s always recommended that this is only taken on by those who can afford it. In fact, there are also initiatives in the UK to help those who cannot afford it to gain access to private tuition. It’s a vital lifeline for many and sometimes essential to give them the push they need to make the best of their exam results. We’ve talked about the financial side of tuition many times on our blog, and we don’t feel it’s a strong enough argument to negate the entire industry.
The most recent stories coming out of Kuwait claim that tuition has become a black market industry in the country and professors revealed that teachers were earning $500 (KD150) for one hour of private tuition, up to a total of $1,650 (KD500) a day and $50,000 (KD15,000) a month. This certainly isn’t the case here in the UK, but the country has concluded that the pressure to come out on top in exams is fuelling an environment where teachers are taking advantage of poor students and families.
Accessibility for those that need it most
One of the key reasons that private tuition is so popular in the UK – and why it’s such a shame that countries like Kuwait have banned it – is that it can be truly helpful. By removing the option altogether, there will no doubt be children who will now fail their exams (due to not being able to keep up, amongst other reasons) who would otherwise have passed. We see this as a great shame, as private tuition can be the perfect way to level the playing field and ensure that school exams are a fair test of knowledge and ability.
Where do you stand on this contentious issue? We’d love to know. Engage with us in the comments or you can also find us on Facebook and Twitter
If you are looking for private language tutors then don’t hesitate to search our directory of local franchisees and get in touch to enquire with them.