Welsh medium education plans approved

By Chris Betteley   |   Reporter   |
Thursday 24th February 2022 2:54 pm
@ChrisABetteley
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Ysgol Cymraeg Aberystwyth
A new language centre will also be built at Ysgol Gymraeg (Ian Capper )

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BIG changes to early years education in Aberystwyth and New Quay are on the cards after Cabinet members approved a plan to teach all under-7s through the medium of Welsh.

The Welsh in Education Strategic Plan 2022-2032 outlines Ceredigion County Council’s “aspiration” that by September 2032 “all pupils in the authority’s schools will attend Welsh-medium immersion education until the age of seven”.

It was approved by Ceredigion council’s Cabinet on 22 February.

Aberystwyth has been identified in the plan as one of the main areas where uptake and use of Welsh-medium nursery and early years education is lagging behind the rest of the county.

A consultation process “specifically for the Aberystwyth area” will set out plans to launch Welsh-medium nursery classes at St Padarn’s and Comins Coch, with the existing nursery classes at Ysgol Plascrug and Llwyn yr Eos switched from bilingual to fully Welsh.

A new language centre will also be built at Ysgol Gymraeg which will add 30 new places as a ‘latecomers’ immersion centre’.

The plan also calls for an “expansion of Welsh medium provision in all childcare provision in the Aberystwyth area”.

Ysgol Cei Newydd is the only English language primary school in Ceredigion outside the Aberystwyth area, and the scheme will see plans to create a new Welsh-medium nursery class at the school, with a target that all pupils are taught in Welsh up to the age of seven within 10 years.

Cabinet Member Cllr Catrin Miles said the approval of the plan “is an important milestone”.

“It will increase the pupil’s choice to follow a fully bilingual path throughout the rest of his or her educational career and in facing the future world of work and social life,” she said.

“At the same time, the communities that surround our pupils and schools will benefit from this increased effort to strengthen the Welsh language in Ceredigion as a community language.”

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