The Government has published its new five-year Work Programme for Cymraeg 2050, the national strategy to reach one million Welsh speakers by 2050.

The programme, first set out in 2017, plans to reach a million Welsh speakers and double the language’s daily use by 2050.

Among the plans is milestones of 30 per cent of children in school year one to be in Welsh-medium education by 2031.

To help achieve that target, the new programme aims to increase the percentage of children taught in Welsh in year one to 26 per cent by 2026, up from 23 per cent last year.

A minimum of 60 extra Welsh-medium nursery groups will be opened by 2026, up from the 40 opened over the last four years. 

What else is in the Government’s work programme?

  • Introduce a Welsh-medium Education Bill.
  • Introduce a 10-year plan to increase the number of Welsh and Welsh-medium teachers
  • Improve pupils' attainment of Welsh in English-medium schools.
  • Develop a programme for supporting the use of Welsh by children and young people, with a focus on transition between education, the community, the family and the workplace.
  • Give Transport for Wales new powers to ensure rail, bus and active travel meet Welsh language standards.
  • Create a Welsh Language Communities Housing Plan and use economic levers to strengthen Welsh speaking communities.
  • A renewed focus on the benefits of workers using Welsh in the workplace.

Publishing the plan, Jeremy Miles, minister for education and Welsh language, said: “Our vision for our language is outward-looking and inclusive and I want everyone in Wales to feel like the language belongs to us all.

“Cymraeg 2050 is a long-term strategy which sets out a road map and vision for creating bilingual citizens who have both the ability and opportunity to use Welsh in their everyday lives.

“By publishing this document early in this Government's term, we’re maintaining the momentum that’s grown since 2017 and we’re giving our partners a clear indication of our intentions for the next five years.

“We must plan carefully and decisively to increase the number of children and adults learning Welsh. We must create more opportunities for people to use the Welsh they have and we must ensure the right conditions exist for people to use the language together, whether in geographical or virtual communities, workplaces or social spaces.

“I look forward to working with our partners, across Wales, to give as many people as possible the opportunity to enjoy learning and using Welsh.”

Having published a report on the impact of the pandemic on Welsh language community groups in December, the Government has also committed to working with community-based partners to increase the use of Welsh.

The results of the latest Census, the official data used to measure the number of Welsh speakers, are expected to be published before March 2023.

The work programme will be reviewed and developed in light of the results of its results, alongside data from the Welsh Language Use Survey.

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