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Defining schools according to Welsh medium provision

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This information document sets out definitions and categories of schools in Wales according to the language which is used as the medium of instruction and the normal business of the school.

Although the new definitions have no basis in legislation they have been devised to provide better information for parents and for local and national government on the extent to which pupils are learning through the medium of Welsh. The definitions will be used for statistical purposes and schools will need to use the new definitions and decide to which category they belong when completing statistical returns.

The School Management Information Software which is used for the provision of PLASC returns will facilitate the collection of the information. The categories are designed to be mutually exclusive and capable of consistent application across Wales.

Data will be collected using the new categories in January 2008 and January 2009 and data will continue to be collected on the same basis as previously so that there is continuity and so that any difficulties with either the categories or definitions can be identified. The new definitions and categories will be incorporated into the composite admission documents issued annually by Local Education Authorities in due course and will also be incorporated into the prospectus of each school. Regulations will be needed to make this compulsory, but it would be preferable if schools and local authorities take action prior to the regulations being made.

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