Minister for the Welsh Language Alun Davies has announced the appointment of Aled Roberts to carry out a rapid review of Local Authorities’ Welsh in Education Strategic Plans (WESPs).
This will happen with immediate effect.
Local authorities have a statutory duty to prepare and submit Welsh in Education Strategic Plans to Welsh Ministers for their consideration. Plans must set challenging targets for developing Welsh medium education in their areas.
The plans must also demonstrate clear actions and steps to maximise opportunities for Welsh medium education.
The Minister for the Welsh Language has continually made it clear he expects strong and ambitious plans.
Earlier today, Alun Davies told Assembly Members:
“This rapid review will be the first phase of implementing change. Depending on the outcome of this review, any future work we take forward must involve those who deliver education on the ground –, teachers, governors, head-teachers, and support staff – those who have such a significant part to play in achieving a million Welsh speakers.
“The actions we take now will influence the Welsh speakers of the future. Whoever is standing here in my shoes in 2050, I want him or her to look back on this time as a period of change, the catalyst that really made a difference to the language and its speakers.
“Aled will bring his considerable experience and keen eye for scrutiny to this role. A solicitor, former local authority leader, school governor and of course Welsh Liberal Democrat AM, Aled has the background and experience I need to get at the root cause of why Welsh language planning is not as effective as we need it to be.
“He will provide a set of recommendations to take the Welsh in Education Strategic Plans forward. The recommendations must give me a clear direction of travel for change. A collaborative approach between Welsh Government and Local Authorities during this phase is essential for a successful outcome. I would ask that all Local Authorities across Wales contribute to this review.”