Yipiyap is an Altrincham-based company that recruits school leavers who have chosen to take a gap year and arranges paid placements for them supporting pupils as in-school tutors during their year out.
The business was started in 2012 by former maths teacher and AGSB parent, Anne Morris, whose son is now in Year 11 with the first tutors being former AGSB students Joss Serraillier and Areese Ishaque. Yipiyap currently employs 25 tutors who work in local primary and secondary schools gaining invaluable work experience and personal development opportunities during their year out and has employed 15 AGSB leavers over the past three years.
Current tutor, Archie Batra said:
“I had always planned to take a year out before going to university as I wanted to experience the independence and responsibility of adult life before committing to at least three years of being a student. So Yipiyap was exactly what I was looking for. They recruit gap year students to teach Science, Maths and English (in my case Maths) to children in schools all over Manchester. Being able to teach maths to children who did not get all the advantages in life that I got is already an incredibly rewarding and enjoyable experience, and everyone at Yipiyap is so friendly that it barely feels like work at all! It has also given me the opportunity to earn money to go travelling and relax after thirteen years of school whilst all my friends plunge themselves into debt and even more school and even more tests. I feel very lucky!
Taking a gap year and working for Yipiyap has also given me time to think about what I really want to do at university and has therefore enabled me to reapply for a different subject. It has also allowed me to treat the application process more seriously as I was able to make mistakes the first time around and learn from them. I am now applying for History based on my actual grades, not my predictions, with a stronger personal statement and a more positive attitude towards university.
If you’re thinking about taking a gap year then working with Yipiyap is a fantastic way to spend it. It is a nice transition from school to university and the Yipiyap team is immensely helpful – from finding your work experience placements to making sure that you’re settling into your new, independent life. My advice to anyone considering taking a year out would be to just go for it. It’s a great way to earn money, meet new people and prepare yourself for university- what’s not to like?”
Kelvin Chu was a tutor for the year 2014/15 when, having gained the necessary grades, he took a year out to reapply for Medicine. Kelvin said:
“I joined Yipiyap as a maths tutor through a recommendation from Mrs Williamson after receiving no offers for Medicine. This was a great opportunity as I was able to keep my brain active whilst gaining some experience to write on my Personal Statement, and most importantly earn some money whilst doing it!
After a few induction days it took a while to get used to going to school not as a student, but as a member of the department team. I became power mad when all the students and fellow teachers addressed me as “Sir” even though I was only a few years older than the majority of those I taught! My year as a tutor has flown by, but it has been an insightful year. It was a great feeling to have personally helped so many students, and have some claiming that they finally understand a topic after days or weeks of struggle.
There were challenges – every so often there were misbehaving students not willing to work or who were answering back. However I think this all adds to the experience and I feel that the year has helped improve my confidence and prepared me to work in the real world.
I have now received an offer at Imperial College London to study Medicine and will start in October. Yipiyap has been so helpful this year and I would wholeheartedly recommend anybody who is thinking of taking a year off to apply!”
Founder of Yipiyap, Anne Morris, commented:
“When I started Yipiyap I wasn’t certain I would find young people of the right character and temperament to do this work but I felt that if they were anywhere it would be at AGSB. As it turned out I couldn’t have asked for better tutors to help launch the business than Joss and Areese. Even at 18 they were extremely high achieving yet down to earth young men – traits that I have found consistent in all the students who have followed them. At the beginning we were starting something from scratch with no rule book but nothing phased the tutors and all the pupils and staff they worked with thought the world of them. AGSB students have continued to impress ever since and they, along with all our tutors, are incredibly inspirational young people who we are proud to have representing our company. What they do is great for schools and great for them. We love working with them and helping them add value to their year out in all sorts of different ways.”
“One of the highlights of my job is feeding back to the tutors comments we get from their schools. For example, Cathy Downing, Head Teacher of Stamford Park Junior School said of Archie after his first half term:
“Archie has made an excellent start to his work within our school, being very professional and an excellent tutor at all times.”
And Nigel Hooley of Macclesfield Academy made the following comment about Kelvin:
“Kelvin has been a massive hit with our students. They have commented how they really enjoyed the opportunity and how much they like Kelvin. Some of the students have been a little disaffected due to recent set changes and to see them with a smile on their faces after Maths was fantastic.”
If you are considering a year out and are interested in applying for a role with Yipiyap, please see Mrs Williamson or visit www.yipiyap.co.uk for more details.
The Yipiyap Team