The YCA has been running a number of activities with the aim of improving access to learning opportunities for adults and supporting children with school work. These have been operated on a short term project basis. All the above projects and activities will be managed through an Education & Training Theme.
Development of Education/Lifelong Learning
A recent feasibility study was commissioned by the YCA into ‘Assessing the Needs of Young People and the Development of an Education Worker’. The feasibility study was conducted by Greg Cox Community Consultancy Limited.
The report concluded that the role of a Education Worker as clearly desirable and necessary if the YCA is to play a role in addressing the needs of the Yemeni community in Sandwell.
A number of options were considered:
The Appointment of an Education Officer solely for the YCA
Working in partnership with other community groups
Working with the local NDC on the development of an ‘Umbrella Group’ through existing and new programmes.
After careful consideration of the feasibility study, the YCA Management Committee has endorsed that the recommendations of the study.
‘Yemeni Community Association to pursue the idea of an umbrella network of the ten Community Access Points to appoint a director of community learning to be funded and managed by the NDC [time limited] to ensure the future sustainability of the Community Access Points and ensure that the learning needs of each community in Greets Green are met’
The YCA concluded in its strategic planning event that the appointment of an Education Officer as one of the key priorities. The YCA will seek to pursue the development of an ‘Education Role’
‘YCA is one of ten Community Access Points within Greets Green NDC. We would like to discuss how those ten centres can work under a community ‘umbrella’ as part of our commitment to the Extended Schools movement. We see this as a long term movement to help ensure sustainability of our venues when NDC finishes’’
Roger Cunningham – NDC Education Theme Leader
(Stakeholder Survey ICD 2005)
The YCA responded to the wishes of the community by setting up an mother tongue school to teach 5 - 16 year olds the Arabic language and cultural studies. It was set up in March 1998 and was funded by the parents of children attending – which serves as an indication of the value parents place on this activity. An Evaluation into the school was conducted with the support of the LEA, using OFSTED guidelines. As a consequence the school has moved to George Salter High School on Saturday 10am-3pm. A new head teacher has also been recently appointed.
After School and Homework Support Clubs
One of the main problems that have been identified is the lack of support given to students with their schoolwork outside school hours; there are many reasons for this lack of support. However, it is this lack of support that is usually the main cause of isolation from mainstream education amongst the Yemeni Youth.
The objective was to create an attractive environment where students can receive the level of support form a qualified person. The club was informal but controlled and support was mainly delivered on a one to one basis.
This project proved to be successful with students and their parents. Recreational activities were also organised for those taking part.
The After School and Homework Clubs will be managed as part of the Youth Development programme until the Education Programme is developed.