Dyfodol i’r Iaith has issued a cautious response to the Welsh Government’s Strategy to develop Welsh language education over the next four years, as part of its aim to create a million Welsh speakers by the year 2050.
The organisation appreciates the background work that went into the Plan, and warmly welcomes its commitment to the growth of Welsh language education. The recognition of the need to recruit teachers is also a positive and necessary step.
The announcement comes at a key stage for the growth of the language, and Heini Gruffudd, Dyfodol’s Chair said, “This Plan has to work, given the Welsh Government’s failure to reach its goals in the past.”
He went on to explain:
“It worries us greatly that the percentage in Welsh-medium education has fallen in 9 counties over the past 5 years. Unlike the Government, we are very doubtful that the English-medium schools can deliver the dramatic and necessary change. These schools simply cannot deliver full language skills in both languages, as Welsh-medium schools are able to.
We therefore call upon the Government to create an emergency programme to ensure the growth of Welsh-medium schools.”
Dyfodol i’r Iaith has welcomed the the Welsh Government’s decision to extend the remit of the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol to include further education.
The organization has long argued the importance of this sector in relation to promoting Welsh as a community language. Heini Gruffydd, Dyfodol’s Chair said:
“ We believe that this is an important decision, particularly as Welsh-language provision and promotion within this sector has been very disappointing in the past. We look forward to seeing new develpments under the Coleg’s lead, and that the sector can now contribute to the necessary promotion of the Welsh language in the workplace and beyond.”
Dyfodol i’r Iaith has welcomed the Welsh Language Commissioner’s recent briefing note on Welsh Medium Childcare and Early Years Education as a revealing document, which raises challenging questions.
The document outlines the challenges and opportunities for the provision of childcare and pre-school education in the context of the Welsh Government’s aim to create a million Welsh speakers by 2050. Heini Gruffudd, Dyfodol’s Chair said:
“The Government needs to face the workforce training needs to establish a strong foundation for Welsh medium pre-school care and education, and this document clearly shows how much needs to be done. It paints a perilous picture for some areas, and we would hope that this will raise discussion on a local and national level.”