A Short History
The original concept for MagiKats dates back to a college (16+) in Luton in the early 70s. One of our founders, Jan Lomas, was teaching there and found herself working with students who lacked confidence and basic skills, yet had to try and keep up with their courses. She began working with them outside of their regular classes, helping them not only to build their basics, but also to develop good study skills and habits.
Active development of the MagiKats forerunner (Mathamagic), however, did not start until early 2004. Jan was working with school children and found there was a significant demand locally for her to provide help at the times when they especially needed support – which was before SATs (at ages 6, 10 and 14) and GCSEs (at age 16).
It quickly became apparent that these children were very similar in many ways to the students from Luton, in that they lacked basic skills and also the ability to study effectively and think their way through problems. In fact, they demonstrated that there was a need for a programme that directly supported children in the challenges posed every day at school, not just at test time.
When building programmes to support these specific children, Jan recognised the fact that every child has different needs and so she moved towards devising a programme that would be capable of as much variation as the students that it sought to support.
Very quickly, the quantity of different material required to support even these limited numbers of children became hard to manage, so Jan’s husband, Rick, began work on a computer system that could organise the materials Jan was writing, so they could be easily accessed time and time again – the earliest version of today’s ‘KATS’ computer system that is the backbone of our programme.
Moving forwards, Jan and Rick added English as a second subject and began offering support to children throughout their compulsory education years. They were joined by their daughters, Sarah and Emma and the MagiKats system and programme was formally launched in 2005.
Following their success locally, the family found themselves being approached by colleagues and acquaintances from other parts of the UK and overseas, asking if they could emulate the MagiKats approach in their local area. This led to the decision to franchise the business.
Initially, the family used some of these contacts to run with a small number of “pilots”, who tested materials and checked that the system could be replicated by others. The first fully franchised Tuition Centre opened in September 2007 (and is still running today) and there are currently 15 Principals, operating 21 Tuition Centres in the UK, with operations also in the Middle East and Australia.
Our educational philosophy
Children, especially teenagers, who want help with their school work want that help NOW.
They want topics being covered at school to become more accessible immediately.
At the same time, they are likely to have gaps in core skills that need to be filled.
We provide a two strand system – one to give an immediate boost and one to provide steady consolidation.
Every student is an individual, so has a programme that is built just for them – no two programmes will ever be the same!
Students receive help from Day One with curriculum topics (addressing the student’s need to feel they are receiving support with school work) and practise their core skills independently (addressing the need to fill any gaps in previous learning).
Our business philosophy
Our main priority is to support existing franchisees as they develop their Tuition Centres.
Our second priority is to promote the franchise so it expands into new areas.
To ensure we achieve both priorities, our rate of expansion is strictly limited.
Any existing franchisee with plans for growth is actively supported and priority always given for new territories.
Information about our programme can be found on the MagiKats website.
Our programme is supported by our computer system, 'KATS'. It is a classroom management tool that is used exclusively by our MagiKats Principals and, sometimes, their staff. Students never use a computer! Its functions include classroom management tools and reports that can be used to provide feedback to parents; however its key function is the preparation of the core work programmes for each student.