Welsh in Education Strategic Plan
In this section
- Welsh in Education Strategic Plan (WESP)
- Our ten year vision for increasing and improving the planning of Welsh-medium education provision in our area
- Outcome 1 - More nursery age / three-year olds receive their education through the medium of Welsh
- Outcome 2 - More reception class children/ five-year-olds receive their education through the medium of Welsh
- Outcome 3 - More children continue to improve their Welsh language skills when transferring from one stage of their statutory education to another
- Outcome 4 - More learners study for assessed qualifications in Welsh (as a subject) and subjects through the medium of Welsh
- Outcome 5 - More opportunities for learners to use Welsh in different contexts in school
- Outcome 6 - An increase in the provision of Welsh-medium education for pupils with additional needs (ALN) in accordance with the duties imposed by the Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018
- Outcome 7 - Increase the number of teaching staff able to teach Welsh (as a subject) and teach through the medium of Welsh
- How we will work with others to achieve our vision
- Appendix 1 - The Welsh Language in Carmarthenshire Report
Outcome 3 - More children continue to improve their Welsh language skills when transferring from one stage of their statutory education to another
Where we are now?
It is the vision of Carmarthenshire’s Education Authority that all pupils continue to improve their language skills when transferring from one stage of their statutory education to another.
In 2019/20, 93.1% of our learners transferred from Cylchoedd Meithrin to Welsh-medium schools.
|School Year||Number of settings||Number of Cylchoedd Meithrin||Number attending Cylchoedd Meithrin||Number who transferred from cylch to school||
*First year of COVID - Cylchoedd Meithrin closed for over a whole school term (March 2020 to September 2020) during the first lockdown, data of children who would have started in the Cylchoedd Meithrin during this time was lost.
Transition figures from one key stage to the next stage in previous years are as follows:
|Key Stage Transition||2016-2017 (Number and %)||2017 -2018 (Number and %)||2018-2019 (Number and %)|
|Foundation Phase to KS2||1022 (93.1%)||1103 (94.2%)||1133 (95.2%)|
|KS2 to KS3||798 (92.9%)||825 (85.9%)||827 (87.5%)|
|KS3 to KS4||805 (98.6%)||725 (91.2%)||747 (96.3%)|
For pupils transferring from KS2 (PLASC 2019) to KS3 (PLASC 2020) 931 of the cohort or 81.5% transferred to Welsh-medium secondary education. The figures show that the numbers transferring to Welsh-medium education between primary and secondary need particular attention. This and the table therefore show the need to focus specifically on primary to secondary transition.
Our expectation is that learners who have followed the Welsh first language programme in primary school will continue this programme on transition to the secondary phase. This message needs to be reinforced with pupils and parents, and by increasing the number of schools offering Welsh streams and a range of Welsh subjects at Key Stage 3.
Our expectation is that all learners who have attended primary schools defined as bilingual will study at least 3 (initially) curricular areas through the medium of Welsh at Key Stage 3, to embed and further develop their linguistic competency.
We will work with our schools to place them in an appropriately challenging linguistic designation, as guided by the new national arrangements. This will be operative from 2022. From 2026, intra-phase transition from currently defined key stages will begin to take fuller effect i.e.:
- Transition between Cylchoedd Meithrin and the primary schools; this transfer is essential to ensure that progression from one to the other is 100%.
- Primary: Pre-school to Foundation Phase; Foundation Phase to KS2
- Secondary: KS3 to KS4; KS4 to KS5 (11-16 schools; 11-18 schools and the FE sector)
Transition matters will be guided by a combination of:
- the local WESP guideline as described herein in Outcome 3
- an appropriate placement consistent with the learner’s aptitude and ability, which will be:
- Suitably challenging for the purposes of linguistic progression
- Applied on a linguistic no detriment basis.
Working with the new linguistic designations, parents will be advised of a broad
framework of transition. This will be conditioned by suitable transfer of pupils between schools in the new transition framework, so that statutory linguistic transition is achieved.
The transition process will be supported by:
- Early immersion (FPh)
- Later immersion (KS2), as deemed necessary
- Gloywi (Yr. 7), as deemed necessary
- Hwyrddyfodiaid / Latecomers – immersion support on entry to Carmarthenshire, as provided by our language centres
To achieve our vision that all pupils continue to improve their language skills when transferring from one stage of their statutory education to another, we will continue to:
- Promote the benefits of bilingualism - Clear communication to all stakeholders about the expectation that learners who have followed the Welsh first language programme in primary school will continue this programme when transferring to the secondary phase. This will be shared with parents as part of the council's arrangements as an integral part of the school admissions process.
- Ensure linguistic progression from early years sector to KS2 and to the secondary sector.
- Increase the subject provision of Welsh medium and bilingual education in the
secondary sector in accordance with the new school designations.
- Adhere to the clear progression protocol to increase the number of pupils who continue to study through the medium of Welsh at each key stage and ensure that this is communicated clearly to all stakeholders.
- Strengthen Welsh-medium secondary provision in specific areas of the county.(see outcome 4).
- We will ensure that all pupils are able to speak, read and write the language fluently by the end of Key Stage 2 to their expected levels.
- It will also promote our expectation that all pupils who have attended primary schools defined as bilingual will study at least 3 (initially) curricular areas through the medium of Welsh at Key Stage 3 to embed and further develop their linguistic competency. This will be achieved by targeting training and support for staff who teach KS3 in the schools in question.
- Schools will need to work in partnership to promote linguistic progression through transition projects and good communication between the primary and secondary sector. This will not be left until years 6 and 7 but will happen further down the primary school to ensure good understanding of Welsh medium education from the onset. Any reservations can then be addressed before the transition stages.
- We will look at the methods of monitoring linguistic progression and ensure that all stakeholders have a good understanding of our protocol. Where there is linguistic choice, we will continue to maintain our vision by ensuring a better understanding of the importance of maintaining a bilingual education throughout.
- We will continue to listen to and react to parental comments such as ‘We cannot help with homework’, especially in KS3 and KS4, by creating guidelines, or in this case a pamphlet, which gives clear answers. Film clips of parents describing their children’s journey through Welsh medium education are very valuable and we will create more film clips to help parents grasp a better understanding of bilingual education. These will not only encompass the merits of bilingualism, but also help address any doubts and misconceptions which arise when addressing difficulties pupils may encounter in certain subject areas. It is important to ensure that Welsh and bilingual medium education does not become an automatic causal default and that the whole background picture is always taken into consideration.
- Regarding progression between nursery and the Foundation Phase, the transition is not so much of a concern as we will be setting challenging targets for all schools in the levels of Welsh/bilingual medium education taught in all schools. With a national mind set change this will be of benefit to us moving forward.
- However, we will ensure that primary and secondary schools can work much more closely in partnership in order to promote linguistic progression to parents and carers. Again, the multifaceted work done on promoting bilingual awareness both locally and national, comes into play here.
The present and future plans under the 21st Century Schools and Education Programme fully reflect the targets set out in the WESP
Carmarthenshire will hope to exceed the 2031/32 target for Year 1 pupils of 10%, reaching the upper end of the 14+ percentage point increase range within the 10-year plan.
This will be achieved through the impact of moving all schools along the language continuum.
Numbers and % of children who continue to improve their Welsh language skills when transferring from one period of their statutory education to another
2022-2023 2023-2024 2024-2025 2025-2026 2026-2027 Nursery-FP 661/94.4% 650/965 FP-KS2 1133/95.2% 1154/97% KS2-KS3 931/81.5% 1005/88% KS3-KS4 747/96.3% 752/97% Total 3441 3561 (+120) 2027-2028 2028-2029 2029-2030 2030-2031 2031-2032 Nursery-FP 670/99% FP-KS2 1178/99% KS2-KS3 1085/95% KS3-KS4 768/99% Total 3701 (+260)