Islington pupils taught maths from India

A PRIMARY school has become the first in the country to outsource maths teaching to India. Year Six pupils at Ashmount Primary School, in Ashmount Road, Archway, were given one-to-one lessons over the internet last term by teachers in the Punjab who have

A PRIMARY school has become the first in the country to outsource maths teaching to India. Year Six pupils at Ashmount Primary School, in Ashmount Road, Archway, were given one-to-one lessons over the internet last term by teachers in the Punjab who have been coached in the curriculum. The service costs just �12 per lesson - against a fee of about �25 to �40 for an hour's maths tuition in London.

Pana McGee, headteacher at the school, said: "It's been very successful. This is an additional resource that we have for the children - it doesn't replace any teachers. It's once a week for children who could benefit from one-to-one lessons. It's tailored to them and it's worked very well with addressing certain issues." She added: "Even if we could get an additional teacher here we could not afford to offer the children one-to-one."

The Skype-like system sees children use a headset to interact with maths tutors over 4,000 miles away. Ms McGee said they would continue to use the service and added: "I would like to see it done in other schools if they think one-to-one tuition would help."

The service is provided by BrightSpark Education, which has hired 100 tutors in India and is paying them �7 an hour.

Parents of Ashmount pupils have also been chipping in to give their children a boost.

Ms McGee said: "You have to be creative in looking for ways to help children. We have parents coming in to help with literacy five times a week, giving their time for free, and that works really well too.