Handle the Summer Drop-Off

How Can Tutors Deal with the Summer Drop-off of Tuition Work


Anybody that has dipped their toes into the world of tutoring for at least a year may well have learnt the hard way that the work that is available during the summer holidays drops off, the Summer drop-off is real.

In fact, ‘drops off’ is a massive understatement to be honest… it falls off a gigantic cliff!

You can go from having literally no free time to fit in any more students to having none at all in virtually an instant – and that means your income takes a serious hit.

Planning For a Summer Drop-Off Is the Key

The key to dealing with the Summer drop-off is planning for it in advance. After all, you do know it’s coming. And the Summer holiday’s are important – we talk about exactly why that is here.

In many ways, tutoring is no different from several other sectors and industries – it is seasonal.

The retail sector is largely reliant on Christmas sales; pubs depend on ‘beer garden weather’ in the summer – and the tourism industry largely shuts down between November and March.

Tutoring is the same. You have to get it while you can because July and particularly August are likely to be barren periods.

One way to deal with this is to do what these other sectors do – try to make a much as you can when you can so that you have enough saved to cover the quieter months. Make sure you also take the time to learn how to budget across the year!

Take On Other Work

Another option is to take on other work and look for different income streams during the summer months.

For tutors, the most obvious thing that springs to mind has to be exam marking.

Of course, the timing of exam marking fits in quite nicely with the drop off in tutoring. In fact, it’s almost perfect.

As exams run from May to June, the marking period essentially runs from May to July (and maybe just into August).

There will be a bit of a crossover with your ‘normal’ tutoring commitments at the start of exam marking, but – depending on the subject – you’ll probably find that the busiest marking period begins around the same time as the tutoring begins to drop off.

The other great thing about exam marking is the experience you gain from doing it.

Make no mistake, nothing puts you in a better position to be able to help and support the students you tutor than having the inside track on what examiners want to see.

Not only that, as there are exams in every subject, it doesn’t matter what your specialism is – there is work out there for you!

The Element of Risk Brings Rewards Too

Finally, it’s important that we end on a positive note.

Moving from a comfortable salaried job to the world of self-employment can be a daunting prospect.

Unless your self-employment is largely made up of long-term contract positions – which, of course, as a tutor it almost certainly isn’t – you need to be mindful that your monthly income is likely to be variable.

You need to be prepared for it to go up and down. And as a tutor – seriously down in the summer.

There is always an element of risk but if are comfortable with this, it gives you the freedom to try different things and take on new challenges.

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