In today's modern society, there is a wealth of online educational resources for children of all ages. These online tutoring agencies can significantly benefit your child's education and future career prospects. Therefore it is important that you choose a site that has been verified as secure by a certified governing board.
Before signing up with a specific online tutoring agency, you should extensively research their organisation in order to ensure they are a professional and responsible agency. Factors, which you should investigate, include:
Whether your child's online tutoring sessions are recorded:
When choosing an online tutoring agency for your child, investigate whether they digitally record their sessions. Reputable agencies will utilise a security camera to record their online sessions so that parents can observe all interactions between their child and their child's tutor.
Research the background of the agency's tutors:
If you were searching for a tutor who would be teaching your child face-to-face, you would naturally carry out a check into the background of the tutor. Therefore, you should perform the same checks for an online tutor. Visit parental discussion forums and review sites such as Mumsnet in order to receive personal recommendations and advice on which agencies are most appropriate for your child's educational needs. These sites will also guide you towards reputable sites, which are safe for your child to use.
Unless an online tutoring agency is willing to list the credentials and references for their tutors, you should not utilise their services. As well as their educational credentials, you should investigate the tutor's personal history, employment record and customer testimonials. Tutoring sites such as Maths Doctor will list the location, background and credentials of their tutors; information which you should scrutinise before purchasing their services. In particular, you should ascertain whether their tutors have CRB/DBS checks. Consequently, it is advisable that you investigate larger tutoring agencies such as Maths Doctor as opposed to independent tutors. This is due to the fact that larger tutoring organisations will have screened all of their employees in order to ensure they possess the sufficient qualifications and government checks to competently and responsibly educate your children.
A CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) Disclosure Certificate is a document, which may include information from local police records, such as acquittals or other non-conviction information. Subsequently, you can remain confident that the tutor who is interacting with your child has no criminal record and has been deemed capable of working with children. In 2012, the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) was created to help employers make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, such as children. It replaced the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). A DBS check will reveal information from the tutor’s criminal history including:
- Whether the applicant is on the barred list for children or adults
- Information disclosed from the applicant’s local police station
The Disclosure and Barring Service work in collaboration with the Department for Education in order to safeguarding the welfare of children and to provide them with verified and competent tutors. Unless an online tutoring agency can present these DBS checks for their tutors, you should not share your personal information with them. By selecting a tutor who has received a DBS check, you can remain confident that your children are being taught by a professionally qualified and responsible educator. It also certifies that your child's tutor does not have a serious criminal record or any other past history which would make them unsuitable to be in the company of your child. Moreover, as with social networking sites, you should maintain an active involvement with your child's online tutoring activities and report any issues or inappropriate content, which you encounter.
Protect your personal information:
During your child's online tutoring sessions, it is highly likely that personal information will be shared such as; your child's grades, report cards, educational progress as well as your contact details. Before providing your child's online tutor with this information, you should ensure that they have sufficient online security and privacy measures in place that will comprehensively safeguard your child's personal information.
By maintaining an active involvement in your child's online tutoring sessions, you can ensure they are being taught by a professional and responsible tutor. Moreover, if any issues occur, you will be able to rapidly report and resolve any problems. For more information on online tutoring agencies, as well as additional online learning resources, listed below are several online learning resources, educational websites and discussion forums for parents: