Friday 11 May 2012

Not too late to change course

The report of the Assembly Committee on Children and Young People is a welcome one.  They are challenging the Welsh Government on a number of aspects of their education policy.
Two which strike a particular chord for me are the requirement to offer 30 subjects to sixth formers, and the impact of the measure on Welsh language secondary education, particularly at sixth form level.  They are both issues on which I posted a number of times previously during the term of the One Wales Government; and they are both issues which I argued at the time that Government had got badly wrong.
The unpopular proposals for secondary education reorganisation in Carmarthenshire (and elsewhere) were a direct result of the requirement to offer 30 subjects; a number which has always seemed to me to have been arbitrarily plucked from the air.  And that in turn – or rather the reorganisation which it provoked – had a direct negative impact on the availability of Welsh medium education (as opposed to Welsh-medium teaching). 
The result was that a government which seemed in principle, through the historic Welsh language measure, to be promoting the language was in practice, through its education policy, undermining it in its heartland.
There is, though, still time.  It the Government accepts the report of the committee and reverses some of the advice it has been giving to education authorities in Wales, then some of the damage can be prevented, even now.  Will it have the courage to do so?

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Courage, now that's a rare commodity John ...

... as is humility amongst Carwyn's chums.