This paper outlines a tutoring initiative intended to re-engage students who have become alienated from mathematics class at school. The initiative is focused on priming students for their subsequent mathematics lessons, and is referred to as “Getting Ready in Numeracy” (G.R.I.N.). Following a discussion outlining the principles of G.R.I.N., data from interviews with G.R.I.N. tutors and classroom teachers are presented. Findings suggest that participating in G.R.I.N. enhanced student engagement in mathematics and helped foster a growth mindset. Analysis of interviews also revealed some of the challenges associated with the initiative, in particular, issues relating to communication and coordination, such as: understanding the purpose of G.R.I.N., timetabling, planning and having sufficient students in the target group. In addition, in some instances, tensions between the professional and pedagogical expertise of the G.R.I.N. tutor and classroom teacher required navigation. Recommendations for mitigating these challenges and tensions are put forward, all of which are reliant on strong leadership and support for the program at the school level.
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