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You are welcome to use Welsh at the meeting, a minimum notice period of 3 working days is required should you wish to do so. A simultaneous translation will be provided if requested.
It was noted that no requests had been received for the simultaneous translation service.
No apologies for absence were received.
Declarations of Interest and Dispensations
No declarations of interests or dispensations were reported.
Decision Items - Education Matters
To consider the report of the Corporate
Consideration was given to the report of the Corporate Director Education.
The Corporate Director Education advised that the report sought the Executive’s approval to consult upon the creation of a new 210 places Welsh-medium primary school in the Tredegar/Sirhowy valley. The Corporate Director gave a background of the vision of Welsh Government and the National Strategy.
The Corporate Director Education explained that the report had been considered by the Education and Learning Scrutiny Committee along with the Blaenau Gwent Welsh in Education Strategic Plan (WESP) 2017-20. The WESP was directly aligned to both the Welsh Government’s and the Council’s Welsh Language strategic frameworks and the Corporate Director outlined the strategic priorities in the WESP as detailed in the report.
It was added that Blaenau Gwent was the only Authority in Wales with one Welsh-medium primary school and if the Council decided not to increase Welsh education there was limited scope for growth and development of the Welsh language in line with Welsh Government aspirations. The Corporate Director also noted that all neighbouring authorities had already undertaken or have intentions to consult on increasing Welsh medium primary provision in their respective areas.
Corporate Director Education further spoke to the report and
referred Members to the four key components of the proposal. The
consultation timeline, if approved would commence on
The Corporate Director Education reported that there were no capital financial implications associated with this proposal as 100% funding had been awarded. Further capital funding had also been awarded from Welsh Government from the Childcare Capital Grant. The Corporate Director advised that there would be revenue budget implications associated with the proposal in the medium to long term and Individual School Budgets would need to be increased from financial year 2023/2024. The funding required would grow annually as the school grew to capacity. There would be a positive financial impact on home to school transport as pupils from Ebbw Fawr and Tredegar areas would not need to be transported to Bro Helyg.
The financial impact, if the proposal was agreed would be included within the Medium Term Financial Strategy. The Corporate Director added that the revenue funding and expenditure has been modelled over 7 years and was detailed in the appendices attached to the report.
At the invitation of the Leader, the Corporate Director Education outlined Appendices 3 and 4, which detailed the revenue implications against the preferred proposal.
The Executive Member for Education thanked the Corporate Director Education for the detailed overview of the report and appendices. The Executive Member pointed out that the report sought approval from the Executive to proceed to consultation to seek stakeholders views and ascertain if there was a demand for a new Welsh medium school.
It was reported that the Education and Learning Scrutiny Committee had supported ... view the full minutes text for item 4.