Kirsty Williams, Cabinet Secretary for Education, Eluned Morgan, Minister for Welsh Language and Lifelong Learning
Today, we are pleased to launch our Welsh in education: Action Plan 2017 - 2021. The purpose of this plan is to set our direction for the development of compulsory Welsh-medium and Welsh language education over the next four years, in line with the vision of Cymraeg 2050: A million Welsh speakers and Education in Wales: Our national mission, Action plan 2017–21.
Quite simply, all our young people, from all backgrounds, should come out of the education system ready and proud to use the language in all contexts. It is a matter of equity, and we as Ministers and as Welsh Government must set the direction and provide leadership. Our Welsh in education plan sets out the direction and specific actions in order for us to realise this vision, emphasising the need to improve support for children and young people learning Welsh.
It is an exciting period for education in Wales, and we have the opportunity to ensure that the Welsh language is central to our ambitious and essential reforms.
From the preparation of the new curriculum to the professional development of the education workforce and the reform of how we support our learners with additional learning needs, ensuring that the Welsh language is considered at the heart of these developments will be a key priority.
September this year saw the launch of Prosperity for all: the national strategy, which places the key commitments of the Programme for Government in a longer term context. Ensuring that all learners will be able to use the Welsh language when they leave school, and that we have a sufficient supply of teachers to work through the medium of Welsh are included as commitments. We must acknowledge that this is a long-term agenda which requires careful planning and several phases of implementation to build sustainable provision for our future generations.
We will provide the overall leadership for developments, but we will also require all our partners to work collaboratively with us as we move forward. Therefore, we will continue to work with experts from the sector, consult with our key stakeholders, and continually monitor and evaluate taking account of international best practice as we move forward to implement.
This statement is being issued during recess in order to keep members informed. Should members wish me to make a further statement or to answer questions on this when the Assembly returns I would be happy to do so