Still have questions? Please find below some answers to commonly asked questions.
Can you register for just Maths or just English?
No. OYA is a holistic programme. Students sign up for the Core programme, the Assembly and Careers programme. Only Culture and Clubs are optional. (Click here for 'What We Do')
Will I be doing the same topics in OYA as in school?
OYA follows the National Curriculum, so if you’re in Year 8, you will be doing the same work as Year 8 in school. However, you may not do a topic at exactly the same time in the year as you will do it in school, as all the schools are different. So you may do a topic first in OYA and later in the year in school, or vice versa.
If you miss a Zoom lesson, can you watch it later?
You are expected to attend all lessons, face to face and Zoom. If you miss two lessons in a term, your suitability for a place in OYA will have to be discussed and you may be asked to withdraw.
Is OYA only for Africans?
OYA is for people who identify with their African heritage. In practical terms, that means Africans born in Africa or the Caribbean, or whose parents or grand-parents were born there. It includes people of mixed race, where one part is African/African-Caribbean. This is not about emphasising ‘Race’ but it is about African people coming together to discuss issues and solve problems common to them and celebrating a culture they share.
Is OYA mainly Nigerians?
No. It might seem like that sometimes, because there are more Nigerians in Africa, London and the world than e.g. Gambians (no offence, Gambians!). But OYA people come from all over Africa and the Caribbean.
Is OYA mainly girls?
No, it’s usually about 50:50.
Does OYA give detention?
No. Nobody ‘stays behind after OYA’ on a Saturday. Failure to respect OYA values (click here) is monitored and warnings given.
Can you get kicked out of OYA?
We would not call it ‘kicked out’, but we may discuss with your family whether, given your repeated inability to engage positively with our activities, you should occupy a space in OYA that another person wants (click here).
Why is OYA not free?
OYA is not a commercial enterprise. It is not a government-funded scheme. It is also not a rich charity that can give scholarships as it pleases. We depend on getting funding from the government, local authorities and private trusts. So certain Year Groups may be funded at certain times while others are not. Or we may have funding for Year 7 this year, but not next year.
What happens if you’re too busy to do OYA homework?
OYA homework is really important because it reinforces what you have learned in a lesson. So OYA homework must be done well and to the deadline. If homework is late or not done twice in a term, your suitability for a place in OYA will have to be discussed and you may be asked to withdraw (click here).
Do you have to attend the Assembly?
Yes. Developing self-confidence and public speaking skills are essential in life (click here).
What if you’re late or don’t attend some Saturdays?
If you miss a week of lessons, you will have difficulty keeping up the following Saturday.
If you miss 2 weeks or are late twice in a term (e.g. September-December), we will call you and your parent to discuss whether OYA is for you.
Will I get help with school homework?
You can drop-in to the Zoom Homework club (Years 5, 6, 7) (click here)
You can also contact your OYA teacher in advance (Years 8, 9,10,11) and they may be able to incorporate your problem into the next lesson.
Do you have to use your African name in OYA?
Why would you not want to? We’re an African organisation, proud of our African roots. So don’t say David/Mary/Precious is your ‘real’ name – that would mean your African name was fake. Moreover, African names have wonderful meanings – ask your parents!
Do you have to pay extra for Culture?
You may be asked to pay a token fee and your family will be asked to supply lunch for the whole group at one rehearsal.