ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeff Smith has been a successful teacher, tutor and school executive for the past twenty three years, during which time he has helped numerous students to overcome difficulties with their studies, gain self confidence and achieve their academic goals.
His own education was a successful one. He had this to say about it:
“I greatly value the fact that, at the start of my education, I was taught by primary school teachers who really knew their business and cared about their students. They placed a lot of emphasis on reading and numerical skills. For me or any other student, being unable to read well was NOT an option that was allowed. No labels were assigned. Competence was the order of the day.”
He mentioned this because the vast majority of students he has tutored over the years have had difficulty with their specialist subjects because their vocabulary and English basics were poor. Almost none of them have known the basics of grammar and how to use a dictionary!
For his secondary education Jeff attended St. Joseph’s College in Blackpool, where he received a very thorough grounding in English and its grammar and went on to gain ten GCE O-Levels and three A-Levels before embarking on a four year Engineering Degree. During his degree, he spent a year working in the aerospace industry where he gained first-hand experience of the monumental span of the ability of the personnel to be found in a large company and really started to take an interest in education. He said:
“I always knew that I would be responsible for groups of people and that, as a group, success would be dependent on how well educated we were and how well we worked together.”
After graduating, Jeff spent three years as a Project Engineer and Manager in a multinational food manufacturing company. It was during that time that he had the good fortune to come across the educational works of Mr. Hubbard. This gave him the answers he needed to effectively educate people he was working with in such a way that they could APPLY what they had studied. He then said this:
“Having found the tools that I needed to become an effective educator, I said goodbye to my engineering career and went fulltime into teaching. For the past twenty years I have been teaching the sciences and other technical subjects to students at Greenfields School in Forest Row.
“I have also been tutoring students (on a one on one basis) who attend other schools in the area. I charge for tuition by the hour. It is also by result. Once I am sure that a student is ‘back in the driver’s seat’ as a student and can study without my help, then we have an end product. After all, any payment is just an exchange for a service that is of value!
“The first session I do with a student is usually a two-hour ‘stint’, during which I find out what difficulties he or she is running into with study. I then promptly provide them with the ‘hot data’ on how to study properly! This always includes how to use a dictionary, enabling them to correctly look up the meanings of words that are getting in the way of them being able to APPLY what they are studying. That is the REAL test! The question to be asked is can the student actually APPLY and DO the things he or she has been learning about? If they can, we have an end product. If they can’t we don’t! Yes – it really is that simple!”