Choosing the right tutor is vital to maximising a students progress and experience of learning an instrument, a bad choice at this stage can hold back someone's progress for YEARS in some case, what should you be looking for and the questions you should asking?
Q1) How long have you been teaching, not just playing, and how long has the studio been in operation and do you have FULL registration with any of the examination bodies LCME/RGT?
Easy to verify with social media and online comments. Some tutors only state how long they have been PLAYING, if someone is 23 years of age and stating they have 10 years experience, would you go to a 13 Yr old for lessons! There membership and registration should be on display in the studio , we treat ours as a badge of honour!!
Q2) Facilities and introductory lesson?
Our philosophy has always been the same since the inception of the studio FIRST LESSON FREE , if you are not impressed on the first lesson you won't be coming back so we will make it FREE so WE are the ones taking the risk !
This allows us to evaluate YOU and match you exactly with people of the same standard, styles, experience, temperament etc later on and gives YOU the chance to find out what we are like , what we offer and ask questions etc. This is especially important for parents or carers of our younger students so both feel completely comfortable in the studio.
Q3) What are your terms of business, how long are we tied into lessons?
After the first free lesson the fees are paid one month in advance ,you pay on the last lesson of one month for the subsequent month. This means you are only ever tied into one month's tuition AND payment is got out of the way as easily as possible so we can do what we love doing , HELPING A STUDENT BE AS GOOD AS THEY CAN BE IN THE SHORTEST POSSIBLE TIME. Anyone asking for payment for terms or months in advance, there is usually a reason for it ....
Q4) Are you DBS checked?
Q5) Are you accessible to everyone?
Again we have made tuition available to as many people as possible, prices have been kept as low as possible and hav gone up ONCE ( by a pound !!) in 16 years , we would rather be cheap and busy, accessible to as many as possible than expensive and available only to a certain demographic. We also openly encourage people with low self esteem, depression etc to give us a try , we WILL have you playing in the first lesson AND have you leaving with a smile on your face and wanting to come back.
This can be seen as soon as you see a studio walk through (ours in on our YouTube channel). Our studio is a custom designed self contained facility most of which was designed from student input, inside and outside seating areas for students and toilet facilities, avoid "studios" in someone's front room or anywhere where there is likely to be disruption, students need to concentrate without disruption.
In closing we have , over the last 40 years had tutors try and copy what is achieved here , WE INNOVATE, OTHERS IMITATE , while in some cases this is flattering in the vast majority of cases we usually end up trying to rescue students from poor tuition and standards , this is frustrating, not only for the student but also for the tutor where the progress that COULD have been made requires repairing before we can REALLY show what is possible. Hopefully, what has come across in this article is our passion, integrity and drive for what we are, NOT WHAT WE DO !!!
Please take on board the above, this is based on past experience of both students before they came here and the tutors here.