Many parents and guardians of teenagers sitting their Leaving Certificate in June this year will be delighted to see the end of this major event in all of their lives. Yes, they will look back on it and reminisce on it and ask how they got through it and how great it was. But, during it’s actual execution, it can be very stressful indeed. They pay the teachers of their young people to educate and prepare them for the exam and third level education and employment. The difficult thing about this is, that as well as being a mentor or coach to their loved ones outside of the classroom, for most they have to ‘fork out’ more finances in the form of grinds, because some schools and teachers are simply not good enough to cater for every educational need of their students.

Parents and guardians who work Monday to Friday during the curriculum year are usually very busy. Juggling work, shopping, cooking, lunches, extra-curricular activities and taking them to and from grinds makes for very little time for one’s self.

If you are one of the people needing grinds for your teenager(s), do;

make inquiries with people you know as to the best, most reliable, most knowledgeable Grinds Teachers in your locality 
– ask if they can come to your home instead of going to their home or place of work
– inquire their start time and finish time (are they punctual)
– get their best price (most of them are working in full-time teaching posts)
– agree time period per week and an overall time period  i.e. start period and end period
– gauge during the first sessions that your teenager likes them and is learning a lot from them
– know that the whole purpose of giving your teenager grinds is to help them look forward to the exam(s), do their best at the exam and get the highest result possible to secure their most ideal third level course.

If you are one of the people receiving grinds, do;

– give the Grinds Teacher a chance to prove themselves and help you
– gauge are you learning more from them compared to your teacher
– do they give you tasks to do between each grind
– do they arrive on time
– do they leave before the agreed time period
– are they giving you their full attention
– do you like them

– are they and the whole intervention worthwhile
Sometimes an investment is required for grinds in more than one subject, making the education of your teenager very expensive indeed. Grinds are good to do if you can afford them. They are beneficial, but they are not always the only solution. More effort from your teenager, more effort from their teacher(s) and 1: 1 tuition on study skills and exam techniques are other options so as to eliminate or reduce the need for grinds.

The person actually paying for the grinds needs to make sure they are getting value for money or are there other ways to help your teenager get through these final few months, the most important of their lives so as to attain what they want to do afterwards…?