Thank you to everyone who came along to our public meeting at Arad Goch in Aberystwyth recently. We hope that you enjoyed the session, and that it provided food for thought.
Siôn Aled Owen gave a fascinating presentation on the theme of; The Welsh Language;Beyond the School Gates. This presentation was based upon his important research into the use of Welsh by pupils in Welsh medium education outside the classroom.
Although the children and young people’s attitude towards the language was overwhelmingly positive, Dr Owen said that urgent action needs to be taken to ensure that this goodwill becomes concrete reality. More has to be done in order to create opportunities to speak Welsh informally and to encourage confidence in its day to day usage. His research shows that enforcement is not the answer, but rather, that behavioural patterns need to be changed, while recognising the key roles played by the family (including the extended family) and the media.
We were pleased to hear that this research confirms one of Dyfodol’s key messages; that language policy has to concentrate on creating opportunities to use the language as a natural choice, and to promote confidence and pride in its everyday use. Siôn Aled Owen’s research shows that the foundation, in terms of goodwill is firmly in place, and that Government now has to build upon this.