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Summit held to discuss availability of Welsh-language textbooks

27/04/2017 Joanna

The Welsh government has held a seminar to discuss the best way of ensuring that all students have access to a sufficient supply of Welsh-language textbooks in the coming years.

Government representatives met with counterparts from the Welsh Joint Education Committee (WJEC), Qualifications Wales, Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol, educational consortia, CYDAG and other organisations to tackle this issue, which is set to become more pertinent as the country prepares to introduce new qualifications and a revamped curriculum.

During the event, attendees discussed the current situation for Welsh-medium resources and worked to identify the challenges involved in ensuring that both Welsh and English textbooks can be used in the context of the reformed curriculum and qualifications, with several ideas proposed by those present.

Welsh education secretary Kirsty Williams said: "I have been concerned when told of the lack of availability of Welsh textbooks; I do not expect children who do their exams through the medium of Welsh to be disadvantaged in any way.

"We have worked with WJEC to look at this issue, and there are now new practices which have helped to reduce the difference in timescales between the availability of textbooks in English and Welsh."

Ms Williams added, however, that these current provisions are only intended to be temporary solutions, and that longer-term answers are now needed.

The new curriculum is being developed for settings and schools across Wales, with the aim of making it available by September 2018 and putting it into use throughout Wales by 2021. The aim will be to deliver a new approach to teaching that reflects the significant changes on social structure brought about by digitisation since the last curriculum was implemented in 1993.

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