Family Offices Address Inadequate Financial Literacy in Schools by Partnering With Private Tutors

Family Offices Address Inadequate Financial Literacy in Schools by Partnering With Private Tutors

A growing number of Family Offices are taking their clients’ financial education into their own hands, partnering with private tutoring firms to provide a more comprehensive level of financial literacy than the children in UHNW families are receiving in school.

As Family Offices are increasingly becoming more involved in advising and supporting their clients in all aspects of their lives - not just financial matters, Tutors International has been asked to support various Family Offices in their role as managers of family wealth and educators around the management of that wealth. 

Adam Caller, CEO of Tutors International:

“Whether it’s additional support in a particular subject, or live-in tutors that take the place of school, we’re in the unique position of already recruiting exceptional educators for wealthy families. Most of our clients have a Family Office, so it’s not surprising that as we become known to wealth managers they recognise the benefit of incorporating more in-depth financial literacy into their clients’ children’s education.”

The financial literacy problem

There is evidence of a problem around financial literacy in private school education. The standard of financial literacy taught in private schools in the UK varies from school to school. There is no national curriculum for financial literacy in the UK, so private schools are not required to teach any specific financial topics.

A 2023 survey by the Money and Pensions Service found that less than half of UK children have been taught about money at home or in school. This suggests that there is a need for more financial literacy education in all schools, including private schools.

To address the problem, some private schools in the UK now offer more comprehensive financial literacy programs, for example:

  • The King's School, Canterbury offers a comprehensive financial literacy program that covers topics such as budgeting, saving, investing, and debt management.
  • Haberdashers' Aske's Knights' Academy, Lewisham offers a financial literacy program that is taught by qualified financial advisors
  • St Paul's Girls' School, Hammersmith offers a financial literacy program that is taught by teachers who have received specialist training in financial education, covering topics such as budgeting, saving, and investing.

School financial literacy programs are not tailored to the needs of UHNW families 

UHNW families often feel that the financial literacy curriculum in schools is too limited and does not cover all of the topics that their children need to know. They may want their children to learn about complex financial concepts such as estate planning, philanthropy, and managing wealth across generations.

They may need to learn about topics such as dealing with the complexities of trusts and foundations, managing wealth across generations, and navigating the unique tax implications of their wealth.

UHNW families are addressing financial literacy shortcomings

To address these perceived shortcomings, UHNW families are taking proactive measures to supplement their children's financial education. 

Hiring private tutors can provide more in-depth instruction on complex financial topics and tailor their teaching to the specific needs of the child, addressing the limitations of the standard curriculum. 

Adam Caller, CEO of Tutors International, comments:

“Family Offices and their clients want to prepare the next generation for the complexities of managing their personal and family wealth. Incorporating a deeper level of financial literacy into students’ education is therefore of vital importance. Sadly, private schools are not providing the breadth or depth many of these families need for their children, so our tutors work with their Family Office to incorporate greater financial education into their curriculum.”

Private Tutors are implementing a variety of initiatives to enhance financial literacy among students:

  • Tutors are incorporating financial literacy concepts into existing subjects, such as maths, social studies, and language arts, which helps cement the relevance of financial literacy to students’ everyday lives.
  • Partnering with financial institutions and the Family Office to provide students with access to custom financial education resources, including workshops and financial simulations.
  • Private tutors are using a variety of technology tools to deliver financial education to students. This includes online courses, interactive games, and mobile apps.

Joanna Dunckley Phillips has been a private tutor with Tutors International for more than 10 years, and she explains how incorporating real-life examples of financial concepts into day-to-day teaching, and having the time and freedom to explore them further is one of the great advantages of private tutoring: 

“One of the most rewarding things about our one-to-one, personally tailored educational model is that it allows us to apply the skills and theory learned in the classroom to real life examples and projects.

“When teaching compound interest, it is always fascinating to give my students an imaginary salary and budget, then have them work out how much they could reasonably save over the course of their working life. This always leads to discussions about salaries, taxes, cost of living, investment etc. Add to this a simple demonstration of how credit card APR works and they are often surprised - but hopefully wiser! Having the time and freedom to complete these projects and answer all the many questions that arise, is one of the great benefits of the tutoring model.”

Private Tutor, Mark Cleaver, agrees:

“It is a shocking anomaly that it has been so neglected in schools until now. Working as a private tutor opens up thrilling new possibilities for financial education; students can engage with creative and enriching experiences through project-based learning. By creating a business plan for an entrepreneurial idea of theirs, or by managing a budget (either real or hypothetical) for a trip they are planning, students can learn by doing and see that financial literacy is not something of which to be scared; instead, it is lively, vital and exciting.”


[1] UK Children and Young People’s Financial Wellbeing Survey: Financial Foundations, 2023, Money and Pensions Service,

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