Joint school a step closer
A final hurdle to creating an all-through school has been jumped.
Only one objection to amalgamating Llanfyllin’s secondary and primary schools was received within the statutory notice period between March 20 and April 17.
It follows the decision being taken by cabinet earlier this year to amalgamating the schools. Education portfolio holder Councillor Myfanwy Alexander, said: "We are confident that we can move forward with the all-through school having listened to the points that were raised. It’s an issue that’s been raised in this forum many times.”
The objection centred on the school’s categorisation that 50 to 79 per cent of subjects excluding English and Welsh were taught in both English and Welsh saying that it should be 80 per cent of subjects.
The anonymous complain claimed that the council intended to downgrade the Welsh language within the education system and hoped that the council’s plans to merge the two schools would strengthen the position of the Welsh language.
In response to the objection, the education department said: “The council does not intend to downgrade the Welsh language. The proposals provide an opportunity to strengthen the Welsh medium provision in Llanfyllin in the secondary sector in particular.”
"We would fully support the governing body continuing to develop the Welsh Medium provision at the school.”
The statutory process will see both schools close from August 31, 2020. The next day, September 1, a fully bilingual all-through school from the age of four to 18 will be opened.
The consultation took place from the end of November 2018 to the end of January 2019.
The proposal of establishing the new all through school was supported by 63 per cent with 29 per cent against and eight per cent “don’t knows”.
Combining the schools would, the council says,address falling numbers at both sites, which are predicted to drop from 844 pupils in January next year to 702 by January 2023.