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Need for tuition in the cost of living in the real world

In the article on out-of-school tutors (ScotlandPlus, April 27) I detected a tension between what parents and pupils want and teachers' reluctance to accept the facts of life. Teachers dress up their concerns by adopting a social exclusion strategy: because only some families can afford tutoring, it is discriminatory and should be discouraged.

I can say that when I was a pupil myself (not yesterday but while O grades were lingering into the era of Standard grades ) I had a tutor for a weak subject in fourth year - chemistry -and I got an O grade "pass" that my prelim exam had suggested was out of the question.

Then in sixth year I was helped to an extra "crash" Higher by another tutor and so ensured the university place I was hoping for.

Discriminatory because my parents could afford the fees? I suppose so, but we can't expect parents and pupils to abide by a self-denying ordinance until the Government's social inclusion policy produces a level playing-field. Teachers should also live in the real world.

Emma Gibson Livingston


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