“If the CEM 11+ exam is tutor-proof why are parents so anxious to secure a tutor?” Tutors International comments on CEM exam

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

Posted in: Tutors International news

Tutors International, global provider of full-time private tutoring, today commented on the phenomenon of parents seeking CEM-specialists to tutor children in the new tutor-proof exam.

Grammar schools in Birmingham and Buckinghamshire are ditching the controversial 11+ exam in favour of CEM exam that is being hailed – wrongly – as an un-tutorable test.

It’s supposed to do away with the supposedly unfair advantage that being wealthy enough to be able to afford intensive private tutoring holds over those that can’t afford it. The premise is that if the CEM exam can’t be tutored, all pupils that sit it are graded on their true academic ability.

However, as Adam Caller, education consultant and founder of the world’s leading provider of full-time private tuition, Tutors International, has remarked previously, there is no such thing as an ‘tutor-proof exam’, and that even the CEM 11+-replacement exam will be found to be much easier for pupils that have extra subject tutoring, practice papers under simulated exam conditions, and coaching in how to actually sit, and pass, exams.

This is a truth acknowledged by private CEM tutors and parents alike: Mr Caller points out, “If the CEM 11+ exam is tutor-proof why are parents so anxious to secure a tutor?” and The Guardian reports on the panic that continues amongst prospective grammar-school parents as they search for private tutors that a) have direct experience of the CEM and b) are willing to tutor their child.

Due to the demand for good CEM test tutors, the fees are high, they are over-subscribed, and can be selective about which children they take on. That’s all perfectly reasonable, according to Mr Caller: “If a private tutor wants a child to sit a pre-test to ascertain their current academic standard, that’s ok. In fact, it’s necessary. What is not ok is to refuse to tutor a child because they are not academically up to scratch. That’s what they need a tutor for. Private tutors should be willing to assist any child reach their potential, not just the ones who are more likely to pass the exam and make the tutor look good.”

Mr Caller continues: “The quality of a private tutor should be assessed on the improvements they’ve made to a child’s ability, not on the number of exam passes. If this sort of pre-selection continues with regards to the already flawed CEM test, the issues of wealth, privilege and social mobility that already plague the 11+ will not be resolved.”

Please visit www.tutors-international.com for more information about Tutors International.


• Tutors International provides an unparalleled tutoring service that matches the right tutor with the right child, in order for the student to fully reach their personal potential and academic excellence. Providing a service for children of all ages at different points in their educational journeys, Tutors International is a reputable tutoring company founded on a commitment to finding the perfect tutor to realise the specific goals and aspirations of each student. Private Tutors are available for residential full-time positions, after-school assistance, and homeschooling.

• Founded in 1999 by Adam Caller, Tutors International is a private company based in Oxford, a city renowned for academic excellence. Our select clientele receives a personally tailored service, with discretion and confidentiality guaranteed.