Following the announcement that a new English medium school in Glyncoch will be one of three new net zero carbon schools to be funded by the Welsh Government, the Member of the Senedd for South Wales Central, Heledd Fychan, has written to the Minister for Education and the Welsh Language and ask him to reconsider the school's medium of language as a matter of urgency.
or years now, campaigners for Welsh medium education in the area have been calling for a new Welsh medium school to be built on this exact site. This follows the decision to close Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Pont Sion Norton and open a new Welsh medium school on the site of Ysgol Heol y Celyn, which will be miles further from the communities of Ynysybwl and Glyncoch.
Ms Fychan said: "There is genuine concern about the future of the Welsh language in the area, and many believe that this new school will be a step backwards in terms of the language and Welsh medium education.
"Although transport will be provided to a new Welsh language school, parents without a car will need to travel on two buses for their children to use the breakfast club; if their children need to be collected for an urgent appointment or if they are ill; or if their children attend after school clubs.
"With the percentage of households that own cars among the lowest in Wales in these communities, only a small number of parents will choose to drive their children to a Welsh medium school which is more difficult and expensive to get to than a new English medium school on their doorstep.
"Given that we have an ambition here in Wales of one million Welsh speakers by 2050, I am very surprised to see the Welsh Government investing in a plan that will harm the future of the Welsh language in the area. The Welsh Government must reconsider the language medium of this school as a matter of urgency."