A Letter of Disappointment

12th August, 2018

To Whom It May Concern,

Being employed as a tutor has enabled me to figure out my next move. It is great for new experiences and allows me to explore new teaching techniques. However, I wish to express by dismay for the appalling treatment I have received as a tutor. I have been working as a tutor for four (4) months and a few days now and I’d like to raise the issue of my salary.

Some context, I was employed as a tutor for a little boy who needed help with writing and homework and the like. The agreed upon terms of payment is $40.00 an hour and each session usually consists of two hours a day, five days a week. Thus my pay should be in accordance with these aforementioned variables. When I first started, it was on a trial basis, of course, where the parents gauged whether I was suited to the position and I passed. Like any job, I signed in and signed out to keep track of the payment system.

It is my understanding that I am to be paid an average of $80.00 per session for one student. So you can imagine my surprise when another child was added to my class and my pay has not increased with this new addition. Let me be clear, I knew that I’d eventually be given another student to work with however, my employer did not see fit to pay me for this new student.

So here’s what went down, this week was my pay-day ( I get paid fortnightly by choice) and my employer asked for my help in calculating my payment using the sign-in book, so I obliged. When I presented her with the figure she said nothing and left to bring my payment. Upon her return she says, “Help me to figure out how our numbers are not matching up,” so I promptly showed her using the sign-in book that I have two students and my rate is $40.00 an hour therefore per session would be $120.00 (the little girl only spends an hour in class). My employer, taken aback, (apparently), says, “Remember when we started we said that the $80.00 was for flexibility of your time and will also include Amy*?”

Then I said, “I don’t think that’s correct,” and I followed up with “I’ll reduce my rate for Amy to $20.00.” So she proceeded to write it down as I looked on and then she says, “Okay for now, I’ll pay you based on the usual rate and I’ll discuss this change with my husband.” To which I agreed to with a pleasant smile on my face despite my anger, I took my payment and left for the day.

I have always had good feedback on my performance, I am a very cordial and sincere individual. I don’t see how they think it’s okay to exploit me in this manner. I feel less than respected as a tutor providing a service for which they sought me out for. Maybe they think because we’re neighbours that I won’t be offended by their ridiculous assumption that I’ll tutor two students for the price of one?

My intention in writing this, is to vent my frustration over the whole situation and to address it. Last year, I wrote a letter of complaint about service people and their need to develop better work ethics so they are able to deliver what they promised. In that letter, I wrote that service oriented industries should consider the service they provide and recognise that, “your business is dependent on the trust that clients have in you when they engage your services. Thus your work ethic and pride in what you do is paramount as well as possessing a deeply ingrained sense of good customer service.”

Likewise, I am one such person who has a strong work ethic and I am dedicated to my students and I do teach the children in my care to the best of my ability. But I believe their should be some accountability on the part of people who employ you to do a job. That is I provide you with a service under pre-existing terms therefore if the employer decides to make any changes, adjustments to the payment system is a must!

“Earn your success based on service of others, not at the expense of others.” —H. Jackson Brown Jr.

A wise person once said, “Always render more and better service than is expected of you,” this statement is something I strive for at all times but I believe that there should be a certain standard for everyone. That is, both parties (customer/employer or server/employee) are in the situation to conduct a transaction, one is in need of a service and the other is in the business of providing the service. Therefore both parties must be cordial and respectful. Yes, everyday will not be a good day and not everything runs smoothly at all times but in general the rule needs to be one of kindness and respect among the two parties so that everyone is happy at the end of the transaction.


A very disappointed tutor.


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