Schools Plus is a volunteering programme which aims to tackle educational disadvantage through placing university students in schools as tutors to provide extra support to pupils. We work specifically with schools in areas of Oxford with high-levels of socio-economic deprivation, or in schools where pupils are at risk of not reaching their educational potential due to indicators of disadvantage.
We work closely with schools to create projects which meet their needs, and have projects across a wide range of subjects : English, Maths, Science, Languages, reading support and the creative arts. Tutors volunteer 1-2 hours a week on one of these projects. Tutors support pupils learning by sharing their knowledge of and enthusiasm for their subject, and can raise pupils' aspirations by being positive role models.
Why do we run Schools Plus?
The overall goal is to tackle educational disadvantage in Oxford by raising the academic confidence, interest and attainment of disadvantaged pupils. Education in the UK is not fair- the amount that your family earns has a huge impact on the grades you achieve. Together we can change this!
Educational disadvantage most affects children from low socio-economic backgrounds, and has significant implications for their future prospects and serves to reinforce inequality in society. For instance, only 16% of children in receipt of Free School Meals progress to university, compared to 96% of children from independent schools. Children in underperforming schools and experiencing social disadvantage typically demonstrate literacy or numeracy rates below the national average, and are less aware of Higher Education and future career opportunities.
We partner with schools in Oxford where there are a high proportion of pupils on Free School Meals, who have English as a another language, and have special educational needs. For example, in one school we work with, 40% of pupils have English as an additional language.
Volunteering with Schools Plus
Volunteering through Schools Plus is a rewarding and challenging experience. You may be looking to gain experience in teaching or working with young people, or you may just want to find a way to make a difference in the local community.
Becoming a tutor
You must be a student at the University of Oxford or Brookes.
You must complete an online application form and attend a selection workshop.
You must send off for a DBS check and will need to complete online safeguarding training.
We run tutoring projects across a whole range of subjects and for both Primary and Secondary schools- from Music to Maths, KS1 to A-Level.
Choose your project based on your subject preference and availability. All projects take place Monday- Friday between 8:30am- 4:30pm
You don't need any previous experience! Just plenty of enthusiasm and an interest in making a difference to the lives of young people in Oxford.
Bring your passion, enthusiasm, and commitment!
To make a real difference, we ask that you commit to volunteer weekly during term time
Schools Plus tutors are supported by the Oxford Hub Programme Manager, Alice, and the Schools Plus student committee - we'll be on hand to answers your questions whilst you're volunteering! We provide training opportunities and events for you to learn more about teaching and working with young people.
Your travel expenses to and from the school will be reimbursed. We make sure that volunteering will not cost you a thing!
Schools Plus is committed to being an inclusive programme, and encourages all students to get involved, and welcome BME, LGBT+ and Disabled applicants.
We can make reasonable adjustments to application processes, selection workshops, training sessions, and other activities on a case-by-case basis. We also provide ongoing support for the students we work with, so if you have particular accessibility needs, including special educational needs, please do get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how we can make the activity more accessible.