Agenda and draft minutes

Joint Meeting of the Cabinet / Education Skills and Culture Scrutiny Committees - Wednesday, 20th October, 2021 2.00 pm

Venue: via Microsoft Teams

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson

Minutes:

It was proposed and seconded and resolved that Cllr Sonia Reynolds be appointed Chairperson for the meeting.

 

It was proposed and seconded and resolved that Cllr Saifur Rahaman be the Vice-Chairperson for the meeting.

2.

Chairs Announcements

Minutes:

In light of the recent tragic death of Sir David Amess MP, the Chair asked that the meeting respectfully observe a one minute silence.

3.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

Cllr Mathew Crowley

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at Awel y Môr Primary School and Tywyn Primary School but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Wyndham Griffiths

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at Blaenhonddan Primary School and Waunceirch Primary School but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Sian Harris

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as she is a Governor at Creunant Primary School but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Stephen Hunt

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at Blaendulais Primary School and YGG Blaendulais but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Jane Jones

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as she is a Governor at The Federated Primary Schools of the Upper Afan Valley but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Dennis Keogh

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at Ysgol Cwm Brombil but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Simon Knoyle

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at YGG Cwm Nedd but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Alun Llewelyn

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as he is a Governor at

Ysgol Gymraeg Ystalyfera-Bro Dur but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Sandra Miller

Re:

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English-Medium 3 - 11 School to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Prmary Schools all of which will be Discontinued 31st August 2024 as she is a Governor at Melin Primary School and Gnoll Primary School but has dispensation to speak and vote.

Cllr Rhidian Mizen

Re:

Strategic School Improvement  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to Establish an English Medium 3-11 School to Replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and LLangiwg Primary Schools all of which will be discontinued on 31st August 2024 (enclosed within Cabinet Papers)

Minutes:

Andrew Thomas outlined information relating to the statutory objection period to the item which ran from 17th June 2021 to 14th July 2021. A total of 297 written objections were received during the 28 day objection period. A large number of emails were in the standardised format, namely 92 of the 297 objections received were standardised email format. Andrew Thomas read a copy of the email received. There were 35 objections received in relation to the Welsh language, 13 of these were emails claiming that there would be a detrimental impact on the Welsh language. None of the themes that came forward in the objection report were different to those that came forward in the consultation report.

 

Mr Thomas advised that when reorganisation takes place in English medium education there is no requirement under the School Organisation Code to undertake a Welsh Language Impact Assessment. However it is recognised that the Swansea valley is an area which is deemed to be linguistically sensitive. Therefore an assessment was carried out.

 

Following Cabinet on 16th June 2021, an email was received from Welsh Government on 25th June indicating that they had concerns about the assessment undertaken by Neath Port Talbot in that it didn’t explicitly address what linguistically sensitive means and, also that there was insufficient mitigation. A meeting was requested with Welsh Government to discuss this further. A meeting was undertaken on 27th July. On 9th August an email from Welsh Government was received which advised that further mitigation could be explored to mitigate the effect on neighbouring Welsh medium schools and therefore the Welsh language. An agreement was reached to appoint a Welsh Language Planning consultant to undertake further work over the summer to further inform the Welsh Language impact assessment. The Terms of Reference were agreed with Welsh Government. These included to define and confirm the context of the meaning of linguistically sensitive, setting out the principles for promoting and safeguarding the language in such an area, consider how the principles could be applied to Pontardawe within the context of the Swansea valley proposal and provide options around mitigating actions to reduce negative impacts on the stability of the future growth of the Welsh language in the short, medium and long term.

The draft report was received from Welsh Government on 18th October. The report has been used to update Appendix K, NPT’s Welsh Language Impact Assessment.

 

Andrew Thomas advised that there would be a couple of areas within the draft report that they would like the opportunity to contest but have not yet had the opportunity to do so. Mr Thomas went through two examples of where this would be challenged, including funding for developing the Welsh medium education in the Swansea valley and also comments pertaining to the current provision of Welsh medium education.

 

Mr Thomas advised that all the mitigation items have been included in the amended Welsh Language Impact Assessment and that these can be cross referenced with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.