Oftentimes, parents don’t know what tutoring should really look like or know what classes their kids need to take, let alone how to help with homework. I often hear parents discuss with friends that the “new math” is killing them and their kids don’t understand. Students spend all night working on homework that doesn’t get completed or turned in at all. This can lead to stress, drain confidence, and add to the current achievement gap we have as African American people. So, how do we address this problem for black parents? By establishing an interactive relationship with tutors.
Three Tips on Working with Tutors for Black Students
1. Relationship Building
Relationships control the success of not only personal and business success, but also academic success. If the parents or the student doesn’t like the tutor, the tutor has lost from the very beginning. Students will be very real and transparent when it comes to who they like and want to work with. They can also tell if you are coming to tutor them for the money or if you genuinely care about success and growth. Parents should be watching to see if the vibe is well with the tutor and their child. This sets the tone. Building a close relationship ensures trust that the tutor will get the job done in the best interest of the child and the parent. Oftentimes, it’s best to have your student tutored by someone who looks like them, talks like them, and can relate to them.
2. Teacher Interaction
Once the tutor is selected and a relationship is built, make sure to engage with the child’s teachers and bring in the tutor to meet with them. Teacher interaction makes all the difference in working effectively with a tutor.
3. A Good Tutor is Engaged with the Child
Tutoring for the black student means being present for them. If students have questions on problems outside of tutoring, a good tutor should be open to assisting them. If students need to call them with a concern about bullying or something personal, they are open and present as a listening ear.
Tutoring for the black student is very high touch in process and requires a lot of care, education, patience, and love for students. Black tutors can often help black students due to their own life experiences.