Pwyllgor Diwylliant, Cyfathrebu, y Gymraeg, Chwaraeon, a Chysylltiadau Rhyngwladol
Culture, Communications, Welsh Language, Sport, and International Relations Committee18/01/2023
Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol
Committee Members in Attendance
|Alun Davies MS|
|Carolyn Thomas MS|
|Hefin David MS|
|Heledd Fychan MS|
|Tom Giffard MS|
Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol
Others in Attendance
|Bethan Webb||Llywodraeth Cymru|
|Dawn Bowden MS||Dirprwy Weinidog y Celfyddydau a Chwaraeon, a’r Prif Chwip|
|Deputy Minister for Arts and Sport, and Chief Whip|
|Dean Medcraft||Llywodraeth Cymru|
|Jason Thomas||Llywodraeth Cymru|
|Jeremy Miles MS||Gweinidog y Gymraeg ac Addysg|
|Minister for Education and Welsh Language|
|Nicky Guy||Llywodraeth Cymru|
|Owain Lloyd||Llywodraeth Cymru|
|Vaughan Gething MS||Gweinidog yr Economi|
|Minister for Economy|
Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol
Senedd Officials in Attendance
|Craig Griffiths||Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol|
|Marc Wyn Jones||Clerc|
|Tanwen Summers||Dirprwy Glerc|
Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.
The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.
Cyfarfu’r pwyllgor yn y Senedd a thrwy gynhadledd fideo.
Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 10:15.
The committee met in the Senedd and by video-conference.
The meeting began at 10:15.
Bore da. Nid yw'r Cadeirydd yn gallu mynychu'r cyfarfod heddiw. Felly, un unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.22, rydw i'n galw am enwebiadau ar gyfer Cadeirydd dros dro tan ddiwedd y cyfarfod heddiw.
Good morning. The Chair is unable to attend today's meeting. So, in accordance with Standing Order 17.22, I call for nominations for a temporary Chair until the end of today's meeting.
I nominate Heledd Fychan.
Diolch yn fawr.
Diolch. Ni welaf unrhyw enwebiadau eraill, ac felly, rwy'n dweud bod Heledd wedi'i hethol fel Cadeirydd dros dro am weddill y cyfarfod heddiw. Diolch.
Thank you very much. Heledd Fychan has been nominated. I don't see any further nominations, therefore Heledd is elected temporary Chair for the remainder of today's meeting. Thank you.
Penodwyd Heledd Fychan yn Gadeirydd dros dro.
Heledd Fychan was appointed temporary Chair.
Diolch yn fawr iawn, a diolch i bawb sy'n ymuno â ni heddiw. Yn amlwg, mae'r tywydd yn ein herbyn ni yn anffodus, felly dydy'n Cadeirydd ni, am y rhesymau yma, methu ymuno, a dwi'n meddwl bod hynny'n rheswm pam fod nifer o'r tystion yn rhithiol hefyd. A gaf i ofyn ar ddechrau'r cyfarfod, os gwelwch yn dda, os yna unrhyw fuddiannau i'w datgan gan aelodau'r pwyllgor o gwbl? Na, dim. Diolch yn fawr iawn i chi.
Thank you very much, and thank you to all who are attending today. Obviously, the weather is against us today, so our Chair, for those reasons, cannot join us, and I think that is the reason why a number of the witnesses are appearing virtually as well. May I ask, at the beginning of the meeting, whether there are any declarations of interest from members of the committee? No, none. Thank you very much.
A gawn ni, felly, symud ymlaen, os gwelwch yn dda? Dwi yn ymwybodol, oherwydd yr heriau amser, mai dim ond tan 11 o'r gloch dŷn ni'n gallu cael y sesiwn yma. Felly, a gaf i ofyn, yn gyntaf, os gwnaiff y tystion i gyd gyflwyno'u hunain ar gyfer y record os gwelwch yn dda? Os cawn ni ddechrau, felly, efo'r Gweinidog. Gweinidog yr economi.
Can we therefore move on? I am aware, because of the challenges relating to time, that we can only proceed until 11 o'clock with this session. So, may I ask all of the witnesses to introduce themselves for the record, please? If we could start with the Minister.
My name is Vaughan Gething, I'm the Minister for Economy in the Welsh Government.
I'm Dawn Bowden, Deputy Minister for Arts and Sport.
Bore da. I'm Jason Thomas, director of culture, sport and tourism in the Welsh Government.
Diolch. A Nicky.
Thank you. And Nicky.
Nicky Guy, deputy director for culture in the Welsh Government.
Gwych. Diolch yn fawr iawn. Dwi ddim yn gweld unrhyw dystion eraill efo ni ar y funud. Diolch i chi i gyd am ymuno â ni.
Os caf i ddechrau, felly, gan ofyn i chi—yn amlwg, mae gennym ni setliad ariannol heriol dros ben ar y funud, yn y maes diwylliant a chwaraeon yn benodol felly, a dŷn ni wedi clywed am nifer o heriau o ran hynny. Fedrwch chi amlinellu, os gwelwch yn dda, unrhyw ymarfer o ran blaenoriaethu dŷch chi wedi'i gynnal wrth ddatblygu'r gyllideb ddrafft hon?
Excellent. Thank you very much. I can't see any other witnesses with us currently. Thank you all for joining us.
If I could start, therefore, by asking you—clearly we have a challenging financial settlement currently, in the culture and sport areas specifically, and we have heard of a number of challenges in terms of that. Could you please outline any prioritisation exercise that you've undertaken when developing this draft budget?
Yes. If I talk in overall terms, then Dawn can talk about more of the specific portfolio areas that this committee has. In terms of our overall approach to the budget, we have, as a Government, prioritised health and care. We've prioritised local government, including education. Now, those are relative prioritisations, because, of course, we haven't had a flatline budget; we've actually had reductions to our budget in real terms, for reasons that everyone understands within inflation, but also, choices made by the UK Government at the last financial statement. That means that, to address the challenges that we all see around us, in our health and care system, in local government, and indeed, in education, that extra money comes at a cost, as it were, to other parts of Government. Now, that's a whole-Government strategy, so I'm signed up to that, this department is, and that has meant that we have had more challenging decisions to make to make sure that the budget passes.
In my previous budget scrutiny, I've explained that that means that, in some areas, we're not able to proceed, or we're proceeding at a slower pace. In this particular area, there has been relative protection in some areas. I think you'll find that we're still going to proceed with lots of our programmes in this section, but it does mean that there have been very difficult choices, and, obviously, if this, or any other committees want to call for extra spending in areas outside the priorities for the whole Government that I've stated, that means that the money has to be found in more reductions to other areas. So, it's an honest, but a very difficult challenge that will be familiar to lots of households, businesses and large organisations.
Alun Davies, if I can bring you in.
I'm grateful to the Minister for that, and he's absolutely right, of course—the easy thing about not being in Government is that there are no decisions to be taken, and everything can be seen as a priority. And I think we've all been through enough budget scrutiny sessions to have witnessed that.
But I want to understand, within Government and within budgets, the decision taking that you're making at the moment. You and I represent two very different constituencies—Cardiff South and Penarth and Blaenau Gwent—and I'm interested as to how you see the equality element or principle, if you like, of budgeting, because my constituents have access to far fewer cultural and sporting facilities than your constituents, so, I would anticipate the Government taking a principled decision that there would be a relatively greater investment in poorer parts—more deprived parts of the country—than in parts that don't suffer that deprivation in terms of availability of facilities, I'm talking about now. So, to what extent has that guided your thinking?
There's an overall perspective about the relative protections for healthcare, local government and education that actually is about recognising the stark socioeconomic differences in different parts of the country. And, actually, my constituency—some of it is a very pleasant, popular, middle-class town in Penarth, but actually, the southern Cardiff part of my constituency is actually pretty poor. If it was a local authority, it would be poorer than Merthyr, but bigger. So, the challenge, though, is that actually, for some of those people, even though they're physically close to a range of the assets that you refer to, in practical terms, it's a challenge. When we look at the individual parties within the portfolio, those are things that I think Dawn can address with her team, about how that then leads to what we've chosen in the programme for government to keep moving and how that does provide real access to facilities in communities, because I recognise the point that you're making.
Shall we bring the Deputy Minister in then?
Yes, on that specific—
I wanted to challenge the Minister, actually, on his answer, if I could. I don't disagree with the Minister's response. I recognise that there are parts of the Cardiff South and Penarth constituency that have very, very serious levels of poverty; I don't pretend that that isn't the situation. But my question wasn't about that and it wasn't about local government, and it wasn't about health, and it wasn't about the other things; it was about access to facilities. And what we all know is that the city of Cardiff provides a far higher level of sporting and cultural facilities than a community such as the communities I represent or, in fact, the Deputy Minister represents. So, I was wondering—and this is a question for the Minister rather than the Deputy Minster—how does he wish to see the equality element of budget process address that access-to-facilities question?
Well, the facilities in this area, though, is an area that the Deputy Minister takes a lead on—the overall resources available, and then, how they're deployed across the country to deal with practical access for different communities. And it goes, not just in this portfolio, but it's something that Lynne Neagle will be especially interested in—
Yes, yes, I get that.
—with her brief on public health, to make sure that there's practical access—. And, actually, with respect, again, if you lived in east Cardiff, even though, geographically, you're close to a range of facilities within Cardiff, actually, our practical challenge in getting access for people is not necessarily straightforward. But it's why we have a programme of investment: the capital investment that we're making; the investment we're making alongside governing bodies and the way that we're supporting local government, because a lot of what you were talking about would be local government-sponsored and run as well. So, the overall prioritisation in those areas is about protecting a range of those assets to provide practical access to communities across the country. So, I'm not trying to disagree and say that there isn't a challenge for us to address, but it is about the level of the detail in those choices that the Deputy Minister and other Ministers will make, because it actually matters to the whole-Government priorities that we set out at the outset.
But may I expand on that please, Minister? Obviously, you referenced in terms of prioritising health and so on, but we've also been outlining, in terms of sport and culture, the benefits in terms of the prevention agenda as well and especially with issues like mental health. Have there been discussions with colleagues around the health budget in particular around how that works in terms of both culture and sport, specifically?
Yes. We have regular conversations about the whole-Government works together. I had a meeting with the Deputy Minster for Mental Health and Well-being on a range of areas that go across our two portfolios, recognising—[Inaudible.] The challenge, though, is that, when you're setting all of these different priorities, everyone can make a case about how their area of activity adds to a broader preventative agenda and adds to a broader public health approach, and those are fair cases to make. You still, though, have to make choices within the budget available. Every good positive step we would want to take you can't take, because you just don't have the elastic to stretch that far. In the Chamber, we'll talk about all the things about treating people in emergency care, about people waiting for care, about general practice, and there's everything else as well.
Thank you, Minister. If I may bring the Deputy Minister in now.
Thank you, Chair. I think that is an important point. I think the Minister has answered Alun Davies's point around the prioritisation. The cross-departmental and cross-portfolio work that is going on is quite significant and is important to this preventative agenda. We've been saying for a long time that the preventative benefits of sport and culture are there for all to see. It's not just a sport and culture budget issue. This is an issue for many other departments.
We've got budget allocations, obviously, from my budget and from my portfolio. We've seen budget support from health through the transformation fund. We saw £0.5 million this year from the transformation fund, just as an example, to deliver the Fit Fans pilot between 2022 and 2024, running across six main football teams. That's a pilot that will be reviewed to see whether that has made a significant difference. That's come from the health budget but using sport and working with the FAW.
Obviously, the Minister's referred to local authority budgets. One of the things that the local authorities are responsible for and is their responsibility and their priority is around how they deliver culture and sport within their local authority areas and how that fits into their health and well-being agenda, as well as the health and well-being agenda of the Welsh Government. So, there's a local authority input to that, there's an education—
If I may, Deputy Minister, just on that point specifically, obviously, a number of those services are non-statutory services. How concerned are you about the impact we may see across Wales in terms of culture and sport because those elements are non-statutory? What considerations have been given in terms of budget planning in terms of those challenges? Because obviously, as you've rightly outlined, these are crucial services in our communities, but obviously non-statutory. So, I'm just interested in your view there.
They are non-statutory, but we still have an expectation around what a local authority needs to do to deliver on its well-being goals and on the well-being goals of the Welsh Government. That is reflected in the priorities that the Minister set out at the beginning. We have prioritised local government and health in terms of our budget allocations, and all local authorities have seen a much better than expected allocation this year. Certainly, in my area, the local authorities had not budgeted for anything like the settlement that they are receiving. So, it then becomes a decision for those local authorities about how they are going to prioritise issues over and above those statutory services.
Even within that, I think it is worth setting out that we have, for non-statutory services, allocated considerable amounts extra in a number of areas. Those are set out in the budget papers in the evidence brief that you had from us. Again, it goes across portfolios. We've talked about—. Well, I hadn't got to talking about the amount of money that's been allocated, for instance, to community-focused schools and the £24.5 million that's been put into the education budget around the sustainable communities for learning programme and so on. Those are non-statutory services that are being funded through other budget allocations as well as just from the culture budget allocations.
Thank you. If I just may ask one more question before we move on to another Member. Has there been, or are there plans to conduct, an assessment of the number of cultural and sporting venues that may be forced to close because of the economic situation?
In terms of assessments, my officials met with the chief leisure officers of Wales at the end of last year, and that was after the local government settlement had been published. From that, we have been made aware that there are no imminent threats because of the better than anticipated situation that I just referred to. We've seen some examples already, for instance, of local authorities that had been planning on taking particular actions, but they have rowed back from those having seen their budget allocation—Powys County Council being one case in point. They were going to close their swimming pools, and decided in light of their budget allocation that they are not now going to do that. So, we are not aware of any imminent threats to facilities, but we are very conscious and very aware of the very real threat to the leisure sector, particularly swimming pools. The fact that swimming pools have been left out of the UK Government's energy bill discount scheme, I think, is hugely important. I am having, immediately after this meeting, which is why I do have to leave at 11:00, a meeting with Swim Wales to discuss this very issue. This is a critical issue for some of these organisations where we have to try to bring pressure on the UK Government as well to include swimming pools and leisure facilities into that energy discount scheme, because if we don't do that, then I think that there is the danger of—
Thank you, Deputy Minister. Certainly, we have had evidence as a committee that supports that view, and we all know its importance. But, obviously, there are also cultural venues. As a committee, we've received correspondence about the Museum of Cardiff, formerly known as Cardiff Story, for instance, public libraries as well, which are being looked at for closure or scaling back and being volunteer led. So, can you perhaps comment on the cultural aspect specifically?
Yes, sure. We have also made additional provision for areas within the cultural sector. Again, that's all set out in the evidence that we presented to you. We have provided £3.7 million in the financial year 2022-23 to the National Library of Wales, National Museum Wales—
If I may stop you—apologies. I meant specifically around local authority and non-statutory provisions rather than the national organisations. I believe my colleague Hefin David will be picking up specifically on national organisations shortly.
There has been significant support put in in terms of local museums. My officials meet with the local museum sector on a regular basis. At this point, it might be worth me asking one of my officials to give a little bit more detail about the work that has been done there and the additional support that we've put in. I don't know whether Nicky or Jason want to comment on that.
Shall I come in, Chair? Is that okay? Thanks, Chair. I think on that question, similar to what the Minister said on the leisure side, we work really closely with local government around the non-statutory services as well. As the Minister outlined, we have provided additional support for that sector in this budget round. But we keep our ear close to the ground on this, and where we do hear of institutions or smaller organisations that are at risk, we do try our very best to work with the local authority and the relevant governing body, arm's-length body, to try to do everything that we can to sort that. Obviously, the whole sector is nervous at the moment—everybody is, with the cost increases. But, fortunately, so far, we've been able to keep things on a relatively even keel. We've got to watch this space really closely, and we always will do, but so far the support that we've been able to provide has kept these organisations going, which is a good thing. But we've got to keep a close eye on this.
Thank you. If I can move on to Hefin David now for questioning. Thank you.
I'll try to be focused in the question I want to ask first of all on culture and the arts. With regard to the issues that you raised, Deputy Minister, about the various organisations, how is the budget being developed in order to develop towards a cultural strategy, an overall strategy with all of this, and are we likely to see sight of such a thing as a result of the current budget? And how will that take into account the impacts of the pandemic and cost-of-living pressures on culture?
Of course, the cultural strategy is part of the co-operation agreement, and so there is a protected budget around the cultural strategy. The work on that is ongoing. We have now appointed a commission partner to do the engagement work around the cultural strategy for us. We have appointed an oversight board, and all of that work is ongoing.
We haven't yet spent all the money associated with the cultural strategy; we have spent money on the development of the cultural strategy, and I'm setting up the oversight panel and so on, and bringing in the commissioning body to do this work for us. But most of the allocation around the cultural strategy is going to be determined by what the cultural strategy actually produces for us, and what it says our priorities are, and what we need to do. Again, I'm going to look to Nicky to give some updated information on that, because I think we're looking for an initial report in March of this year, from the one-to-one discussions that are going to be going on with our various stakeholders, with a view to that strategy hopefully being developed by the end of 2023. But Nicky, correct me if I'm wrong on that timeline.
No, Minister, that's the timeline that we're working to. As you said, the vast majority of the funding is in 2024-25, when the priorities of the strategy will have been identified. However, we have already allocated an amount of funding to particularly the national cultural bodies to enable them to support delivery and also for their viability as part of that. But the timeline the Minister mentioned is what we're working to.
Thank you very much. Can I ask, Heledd, about the arts council as well?
The arts council called for an additional £5 million to £10 million specifically to mitigate the impact of the increasing costs across the arts sector. Do you agree with that assessment of the scale of need, and what will be the impact of allocating significantly less, should you not agree with that?
I think at the outset what I would say is that I was very concerned when I saw that report, and saw what the arts council were saying in terms of that potential shortfall that they could see across the sector. Since that report, what I am pleased to say is that we have allocated an additional £1 million in support to the arts sector via the Arts Council of Wales. That was £0.5 million in 2022-23 and another £0.5 million in 2023-24, and that's part of the Welsh Government's wider package of support for the culture and sports sector in Wales.
In addition to that—and I think this is very important—what the Arts Council of Wales have told us is that their National Lottery funding has performed much better than they had expected, and so that means that they're able to direct additional funding to cost-of-living pressures faced by the sector that they hadn't anticipated being able to do previously. So, they're currently exploring options to target that funding in the most effective way that they can. Additionally, £3.8 million has been allocated to the Arts Council of Wales via the support to the culture strategy, which we just referred to, under the co-operation agreement.
I think it's fair to say, though, that due to the budget constraints and the issues that were raised by the Minister at the outset of the session, an ask of £5 million to £10 million from the Welsh Government is not feasible. It's not a feasible level of support that we can put in at this stage. Again, I would reiterate and repeat that the main policy levers to deal with these particular issues, these particular pressures being faced by all of our sectors, are not with the Welsh Government; they are with the UK Gorvenment, and we will continue to press the UK Government to do all it can to try to ensure that these organisations are supported effectively through this most difficult period.
Hefin, do you have any further questions? No, you're happy to move on. If I can bring in Alun Davies.
The Minister's tempting me to go down a little rabbit hole there in terms of funding; I won't be tempted this morning. I'm interested in continuing the conversation we started with the Minister earlier about relative spend across Wales, because one of the lessons that I think we've all learned over the last decade or so is if Cardiff gets a cold, Blaenau Gwent gets pneumonia in terms of spending. Government spending is more important in places that you represent, Deputy Minister, and I represent, because there is less private investment. So, how is the Government looking at protecting the facilities available to people that we both represent in the Heads of the Valleys, where the cost-of-living pressures, the inflation pressures, the austerity pressures are all far, far greater?
Again, I think that is a very fair challenge, and it's something that we have sought to address through the programme for government, and through our remit letters to our cultural and sporting bodies that we're responsible for—
Okay, well, tell me, then, how does the remit letter to Sport Wales reflect the challenge I've just made to you?
Okay, so, the remit letter to Sport Wales talks about improving community facilities, improving health and well-being through physical activity in our most deprived areas. It also talks about equality, inclusion, diversity—all of the things that we know need to be addressed as part of addressing the issue that you raise. All of that—and you've had a copy of the remit letter—
Yes, I've read it.
So, you've had a copy of the remit letter that I sent to Sport Wales, and that is very clear. I will be holding Sport Wales to account on their spend and how they allocate their funding to achieve those objectives, as you will hold me to account as, ultimately, being responsible for that. So, there is a very clear direction not just to Sport Wales, but to all our cultural organisations—that we have to address the issue of inclusion and participation, of equality and diversity in all its forms. I have these conversations with our cultural bodies as well as I do with the sport bodies. So, none of the organisations that I am responsible for can be in any doubt about what our objectives are for this, and the level of spend in those areas I expect to see reflecting our priorities through our programme for government.
What I would say in terms of relative spend, Alun, is if you look at some of the grants that are being made available via Sport Wales—and I'm talking about things like the Be Active grant—the vast majorities of those grants have gone into organisations that operate in areas of significant deprivation, and those are areas like your constituency and mine. I'm absolutely delighted to see that, of the Be Active fund, the biggest amount of grant aid that was provided was actually in Merthyr Tydfil, through the Be Active fund. So, there is a very clear direction—[Laughter.]—about where that money is spent—
It does help having a Minister, doesn't it? You've been very clear there, and what I take, and correct me if I'm wrong, is a very clear directive to all of the bodies you're responsible for from your remit letters that you regard deprivation as an indicator of spend and you would expect to see greater relative spend to address those issues. Correct me if I'm putting words in your mouth, Minister.
But can we move on, as well, to the contemporary art gallery? Now, this is something you and I have discussed in private on a number of occasions. You know that I'm not wholly convinced by the strategy as it currently stands. So, perhaps it would be useful for us, on the record this morning, to understand where you are and how you see the strategy, which I've got misgivings about, progressing, given the current spend envelope.
So, the strategy and the development of the national contemporary art gallery goes right back to about 2018 in fact, so it's been knocking around for some considerable time, but it was a programme for government commitment and it is part of the co-operation agreement that we proceed with a national contemporary art gallery that is based on a dispersed model, and we have partners that are working towards that aim. So, the national library, the national museum and Arts Council of Wales are all working together to deliver this dispersed model of a national contemporary art gallery. We've identified a number of sites across Wales that will be able to house some of these contemporary collections.
The significant change from the original proposal of a dispersed model was that we introduce a number of anchor sites into the game, if you like. So, we don't yet have a final list of potential anchor sites, but we're looking to have a number of anchor sites that will be located in strategic parts of Wales so that all parts of Wales will be able to benefit from the anchor as well as the dispersed model site. Again, I can ask Nicky to give far more information on that.
No, we don't need any—
No, I think we're getting away from budget at the moment.
Yes, the question was how the financial envelope affects the strategy as you've described. We understand what the strategy is and, I think, Chair, it would be useful for us to have a couple of hours on this strategy at some point as a committee.
I'm well aware of the issues around that. So, the budget for the contemporary art gallery has not been impacted on by any of the things that we've talked about previously, and the Minister—
So, you expect to stick to the timetable as it already has been set, although changes have been made.
We are hopeful that we will be in a position to be making progress on the national contemporary art gallery by the end of this year—
That's not the question, Minister. 'Being hopeful by the end of this year' isn't the answer I was looking for. The strategy, as it stands, is it affected by the financial climate? You seemed to be edging towards saying 'no'.
No, it's not—
Right, that's all we need to know.
It is not about the finances. So, any potential delays around the national contemporary art gallery are not linked to finances. They're linked to the production of the business case and to practical aspects.
That's all we needed to know.
Thank you. May I ask one question? Just in terms of national organisations, we’ve seen, from the allocations here, that even though there has been perhaps a net increase, the core revenue is consistently less. Given that we know that, for a number of national organisations, such as the national library and so on, a lot of their spending from that revenue funding is on staffing costs. So, have you been able to progress at all in terms of the pay remit of how that will also be supported, because, obviously, we need to ensure fair wages for everybody working in our national institutions. But we've heard very clear indications from both the national library and national museum of Wales, et cetera, that unless the funding was there for the pay remit, that, actually, there will be a decrease in terms of services they're able to provide, which is then, obviously, at odds in terms of the remit letters and being able to do more across Wales.
So, we've signed off the pay remit for all of our arm’s-length bodies, sponsored bodies. All of them have received additional funding from Welsh Government to meet their pay awards for this year. We ensured that they had additional funding from the original allocation so that they were able to make pay offers in line with civil service pay offers, and that has always been our objective—that our arm’s-length bodies be treated no less favourably than directly employed civil service staff. So, that has happened, and all of our sponsored bodies have received additional funding from us to meet those objectives and to meet those requirements of them.
Thank you. Can I bring Tom Giffard in now, please?
Thanks. Deputy Minister, there's a line in the draft budget paper that says,
'Sport can be the nation’s most effective preventative health tool but greater cross-sector prioritisation is needed'.
It's a lovely line, but it was in last year's draft budget as well. That suggests to me it wasn't done last year. Why should this year be any different?
I don't accept that, Tom. I think the fact that it was in last year's and it's in this year's just means that it's still as important as it was last year. And I—
Okay. Well, what progress have we made since last year?
And I would expect it will be in next year's as well.
Because it will continue to be very important that sport is the most effective preventative health tool. That won't happen in a year.
So, what progress have you seen since last year on that?
Well, I started to answer this in response to a question from Heledd Fychan earlier on about the amount of cross-departmental work that is going on in this area—in health, through the transformation fund, through our school budgets, through the new curriculum, and how we are introducing sport into the curriculum and making it a core of what we're trying to do, and the fact that we're going to be spending money again through the education budget on community-focused schools so that our facilities will be available in communities and so on. It's through the communities facilities grant—that's the social justice budget head—and local authorities we've talked about. I think it is important to keep saying that the delivery of sport, and all of its objectives, is not solely the responsibility of Welsh Government or my budget. It is a responsibility of a number of public sector bodies, including local authorities and including third sector organisations. And we are funding in a number of those areas, and in a number of Welsh Government departments, and local authorities, to achieve that objective.
So, the preventative aspect of it is still there and it's still very clear. It's still something we have more work to do on. It is still something we're prioritising, and I would expect to see this in next year's budget paper as well, Tom.
Okay. I fully accept what you said about not all of sport would necessarily be something that comes under your portfolio and actually exists in other departments; I accept all of that. What oversight do you have of the ongoing work that might not necessarily sit within your department, and how do you ensure that that meets other sporting goals that you perhaps have and that do sit within your department? How do you ensure that synergy?
Well, we ensure that through Cabinet, because each of us has objectives in Government that we have to deliver. And we are accountable to the Cabinet, to the First Minister, for ensuring that our programme for government commitments are achieved. We all have regular bilateral meetings with the First Minister, where he will talk to us about the progress in our portfolio areas and so on. So, there is regular discussion, there is regular update, there is regular progress with the bodies that each of us as Ministers are responsible for, and across Government with each of the Ministers, so that we talk to each other on that cross-Government basis.
But you understand there's a difference between progress reports at Cabinet and an ongoing assessment to ensure that things that don't sit within your portfolio are meeting the needs that perhaps do exist in your portfolio. That is a very different thing from updates at Cabinet. Do you see that?
Oh, yes, but what I'm saying, Tom, is that that process that I've just referred to is part of the ongoing assessment, because we have to produce the annual report every year on our progress in Government, and what we have achieved and what we've not achieved. And we are answerable to the Senedd if we don't achieve. But there is an ongoing assessment across all portfolio—that we are seeking to achieve everything that is set out in our programme for government, some of which are stand-alone things within portfolios, others of which are cross-departmental.
Thank you, and thank you, Tom. Can we move on to Carolyn Thomas, please? I'm conscious we've got six minutes to go.
Okay. Thank you. Can I just ask why the national botanic garden has had a budget reduction? It's the only institution to have that. I notice that Cadw has had a budget increase, and it was mentioned to me by somebody that Cadw seems to have quite a healthy budget still to spend. Also, really, about the scrutiny of Cadw and Creative Wales, who scrutinises them? So, everything lumped together there.
Yes. Okay, let me start with the national botanic garden. So, I'm quite clear that the national botanic garden has been able to absorb its reduction. They've had a 1.1 per cent reduction, which is the same as everybody else across my portfolio. That amounted to a very modest cut—[Inaudible.]—in pounds to its discretionary grant. I think, you know, we need to be very clear that the National Botanic Garden of Wales is not a Welsh Government sponsored body, so we have different responsibilities and liabilities around all of that, but their capital grant has been maintained at £200,000. They've had an additional £1 million provided to enable them to meet their statutory responsibilities under the—[Inaudible.] In the last financial year, we were also able to provide capital to pay off a long-standing loan that they had to Carmarthenshire council, and that was in excess of £1 million, and we paid that off. We did that on behalf of the national botanic garden, to enable them to move forward on a more sound financial footing, and we've had every indication that that is the case.
In terms of Cadw and Creative Wales, I can assure you that Cadw isn't awash with money. They went through a very—[Inaudible.]
You're cutting out, Minister. Sorry, we've got you back now. Your sound is cutting out a bit, just for you to be aware, but we can follow you.
Okay. You got everything I was saying there about the botanic garden—
Yes. I can still hear you.
Okay. On Cadw, then, I was just saying that they're not awash with money, Cadw. Certainly, through the pandemic, they had an extremely difficult time. Most of the Cadw sites were closed and they lost a considerable amount of income, so they are kind of playing catch-up on that at the moment, but we are pleased to see that visitor numbers are returning and that is putting Cadw in a healthier position.
In terms of scrutiny—. Oh, and I should say that Cadw do have a significant capital budget, because we have a significant number of historical monuments that clearly have to be maintained and improved. We've seen significant capital investment in both Caerphilly and Caernarfon castle over the last couple of years. Caernarfon castle is going to be opening formally in March—
Hefin will be aware of what's happening in Caerphilly.
In terms of scrutiny, I think it's important just to say that Cadw and Creative Wales are both internal Welsh Government agencies, but they have independently appointed boards—boards that are independent. So, they oversee and scrutinise the work of Cadw and of Creative Wales, and also of course they are responsible to me and I am subject to scrutiny. So, that's the line of scrutiny.
Thank you, Deputy Minister. Carolyn, do you have a quick question that would warrant a quick response?
No, that's fine. Yes, I saw that there was a reduction in capital from about £1.2 million to £200,000 in the report, so you've explained what that was for the national botanic garden as well, so thank you.
Thank you very much. Can I ask one very quick question, please, Deputy Minister? When we've received evidence from the National Library of Wales, they mentioned that there was a very serious risk to the collections, which they deemed to be totally unacceptable without additional funding. Are you concerned about our national collections at both the national library and National Museum Wales, in light of the budget pressures?
We are working with the national library to get a handle on what all the issues are, but we have put additional support in—again, aware of the impact of increasing costs on the national library. We did put in an additional £650,000 in 2022-23, to help address the increased cost of utilities and cost-of-living pressures, and a further £0.5 million has been given to them to pay for a new fire system, to ensure the safety of their collections.
And in relation to the 2023-24 budget, they will see an increase in their grant in aid funding, and so for the next two financial years, we've made available time-limited and ring-fenced funding to support the additional cost-of-living pressures again. That's £447,000 last year; £678,000 next year; and so on, and similar amounts for dealing with utilities. So, there will be further additional funding to support—[Inaudible.]—priorities, including financial sustainability, over the next two years. We are very well aware of the pressures and the issues facing the national library and we are seeking to address it. I don't know whether Nicky wants to add any more to that, but I'm conscious of time.
Yes. I'm conscious that you have told us that you're not able to stay post 11 a.m., Deputy Minister.
I've got about five minutes. I can give you an extra five minutes.
If we're content, and Minister for Economy, are you content for an additional five minutes? Okay, great. Can we bring in Dr Nicky Guy, then, please?
Yes, thanks, Heledd. So, we're working with both of the organisations to understand their pressures. Obviously, they have been, with their historic estate, hit very, very hard by the inflationary pressures. Specifically around the library, in 2024-25, we have allocated an additional £1.5 million, which is currently sitting in 6170 BEL, towards their collections' storage. That will be transferred over to the library, but it is a ring-fenced grant.
Likewise, there are other capital projects, particularly around decarbonisation and digitisation, which are very much focused on protecting the national library's collection. And they're a key partner within the contemporary art gallery project, so, again, the digitisation of their collection is being taken forward through some funding that's specified for that. So, we are working with them, but there is additional funding specifically for collection storage and collections management, given that the library of course, by its very nature, the size of its collection increases on a daily basis and some of the historic collection needs to be maintained in very, very specific conditions.
Thank you. That's very helpful. And, obviously, that can take funding as well, in terms of the safety of collections. So, it's good to have that reassurance. If I may, perhaps, return to the Deputy Minister, obviously, we haven't been able to cover every element, but we have been able to cover a number of questions. Can I ask, we will have some additional points of clarity, so would both the Minister and the Deputy Minister be happy for us to perhaps ask for some additional clarification? I'm just concerned we haven't really been able to delve into Creative Wales and some of the issues. Would that be possible?
Great. Thank you very much. Carolyn.
Sorry. The Deputy Minister said that she has a meeting with Swim Wales, and I'm really concerned because we did hear that, of children in key stage 2, only 50 per cent could swim at the end of that. We heard about transport issues. So, swimming baths are a real concern. So, could we ask for feedback as well from that? That would be really good.
Yes. Would that be okay, Deputy Minister?
Yes, absolutely. I'm happy to provide feedback once I've met with Swim Wales. I'm happy to do that.
Many thanks. Does anybody else on the committee have any questions? Tom, if I may bring you in.
Before we close this part of the meeting, can I just state my dissatisfaction with the connection issues that we've had? I think we've had multiple interruptions throughout, from both the Deputy Minister and the Minister, and I've got misgivings about doing this again virtually. I just wanted to say that for the record.
Thank you. Thank you, Tom, for that. Rather than start on another area and not be able to do it justice, can I thank all our witnesses today? Thank you, Minister and Deputy Minister, and your officials, for joining us. We're very grateful, and for the papers in advance as well. We understand the financial pressures, particularly in terms of non-statutory services, and we would appreciate it if you could please keep us informed as a committee in terms of that wider picture nationally as well. But thank you very much for your time this morning.
Can I say, Chair, that if there are areas that you wanted to cover today that you felt that you haven't, I am more than happy to write to you with further information on any areas that you feel that you haven't been able to cover in committee this morning?
We're very grateful for that. So, thank you very much, all. We will be taking a short break as a committee now and reconvening for our next session at 11:10. So, we'll be going private for five minutes.
Gohiriwyd y cyfarfod rhwng 11:04 ac 11:11.
The meeting adjourned between 11:04 and 11:11.
Bore da a chroeso nôl i gyfarfod y Pwyllgor Diwylliant, Cyfathrebu, y Gymraeg, Chwaraeon, a Chysylltiadau Rhyngwladol ar gyfer ein sesiwn craffu ni ar gyllideb ddrafft Llywodraeth Cymru ar gyfer 2023-24, ac mae gennym ni sesiwn dystiolaeth gyda Gweinidog y Gymraeg ac Addysg. Gaf i eich croesawu chi, Weinidog, i'r pwyllgor? Bore da i chi. A gaf i ofyn i'ch swyddogion chi i gyflwyno eu hunain ar gyfer y record, os gwelwch yn dda?
Good morning and welcome back to the meeting of the Culture, Communications, Welsh Language, Sport, and International Relations Committee for our scrutiny session of the Welsh Government's draft budget for 2023-24, and we have an evidence session with the Minister for Education and Welsh Language. May I welcome you, Minister, to the committee? Good morning. May I ask your officials to introduce themselves for the record, please?
Bore da. So, Owain Lloyd—fi yw cyfarwyddwr y Gymraeg ac addysg yn Llywodraeth Cymru.
Good morning. Owain Lloyd—I am director for Welsh language and education in the Welsh Government.
Bethan Webb, dirprwy gyfarwyddwr 'Cymraeg 2050', Llywodraeth Cymru.
Bethan Webb, deputy director 'Cymraeg 2050' within the Welsh Government.
Diolch yn fawr iawn a chroeso i'r tri ohonoch chi atom ni. Os caf i ddechrau os gwelwch yn dda: yn amlwg, mae gennym ni setliad ariannol hynod o heriol am bob math o resymau. Fyddech chi'n gallu amlinellu, os gwelwch yn dda, unrhyw ymarfer o ran blaenoriaethu rydych chi wedi'i gynnal wrth ddatblygu'r gyllideb ddrafft hon?
Thank you very much and welcome to the three of you. If I may start, please: clearly, we have a very challenging financial settlement for all sorts of reasons. Could you please outline any prioritisation exercise you've undertaken when developing this draft budget?
Wrth gwrs, wel, mae wedi bod yn gyllideb heriol iawn. Byddwch wedi clywed gan Weinidogion eraill hefyd mai efallai y gyllideb anoddaf yng nghyfnod datganoli yw hon oherwydd pwysau chwyddiant a’r ffaith bod y setliad gan San Steffan ddim wedi bod yn ddigonol hyd yn oed i gynnal gwasgiad ar gostau presennol, heb sôn am ehangu cynlluniau, os hoffech chi. Felly, yn y cyd-destun hwnnw, rwy’n credu bod cynnal lefel y gyllideb wedi bod yn ddigon heriol ynddo’i hun heb sôn am gynyddu lefel y gyllideb.
Fel ŷch chi'n gwybod, mae’r gyllideb wedi mynd i fyny eleni a’r bwriad yw y bydd yn cael ei chynyddu eto y flwyddyn ar ôl hynny. Felly, mae hynny'n beth pwysig iawn. Mae enghreifftiau pwysig yn y gyllideb lle rŷn ni wedi gwneud ychwanegion sydd yn mynd i gael impact go iawn, rwy'n credu, er enghraifft, y maes trochi hwyr. Rŷn ni wedi gallu cynyddu’r gyllideb yn fanna—mae hynny’n mynd i gael effaith ar draws Cymru ac ar gael mynediad hafal i addysg Gymraeg. Ac mae yna amryw o lefydd eraill, gan gynnwys meysydd o fewn y cytundeb cydweithio.
Felly, y flaenoriaeth sydd gen i, fel Gweinidog addysg, yw sicrhau ein bod yn gwneud popeth y gallwn ni i gynyddu’r defnydd o’r Gymraeg. Mae cynyddu nifer y siaradwyr wrth gwrs yn bwysig ac yn gwbl ganolog i gyrraedd nod 'Cymraeg 2050', ond fe welwch chi yn y gyllideb fod y rhan fwyaf o'r gyllideb—wel, yr elfen fwyaf o’r gyllideb—yn mynd tuag at gynyddu a chefnogi defnydd pellach. Felly, dyna’r llinell wariant yn y gyllideb sydd â’r fwyaf o gyllideb ac mae hynny’n fwriadol.
Wrth gwrs, mae gennym ni mewn mannau eraill yng nghyllideb Llywodraeth Cymru ffynonellau eraill rŷn ni'n tynnu arnyn nhw i gefnogi maes polisi’r Gymraeg, ond o’m safbwynt i, fel Gweinidog, defnydd yw’r flaenoriaeth.
Of course, it has been a very challenging budget. You will have heard from other Ministers that this is perhaps the most difficult budget in the era of devolution because of pressures from inflation and the fact that the settlement from Westminster hasn't been sufficient even to cope with the pressures on current spending, never mind expanding spend. So, in that context, I think that maintaining the funding level was challenging enough in and of itself, never mind increasing the level of the budget.
As you know, the budget has increased this year and the intention is that it will be increased again the following year. So, that's very important indeed. There are some important examples in the budget where we have made additions that will have a very real impact, for example, in late immersion. We've been able to increase the budget there—that's going to have an impact across Wales and provide equal access to Welsh-medium education. And there are a number of other areas, including areas within the co-operation agreement.
So, the priority for me, as education Minister, is to ensure that we do everything that we can to increase the use of the Welsh language. Increasing the number of speakers is of course important and central to reaching the target of 'Cymraeg 2050', but you will see in the budget that most of it, or the largest element of the budget, is focused on increasing and supporting further use of the Welsh language. So, that's the budget expenditure line that has the greatest amount of funding and that's very deliberate.
Of course, there are other parts of the Welsh Government budget that we will draw on to support the Welsh language policy area, but from my perspective, usage is the most important thing.,
Diolch, Weinidog. Yn amlwg, rydym ni wedi cael, yn y flwyddyn ddiwethaf yma, y ffigurau o ran y cyfrifiad. Yn amlwg, rydych chi wedi amlinellu’r gwaith pellach sydd ei angen o ran dadansoddi a deall pam mae gwahaniaethau felly. Ond, rydych chi wedi sôn ynglŷn â'r defnydd, yn amlwg, ac rydych chi wedi cyfeirio hefyd at y targed o gynyddu'r niferoedd, felly, ydych chi'n teimlo bod rhai o'r cynlluniau wedi cael eu cyfyngu oherwydd yr heriau ariannol a'r gwasgiadau sydd ar y gyllideb, eich bod chi wedi gorfod ail-flaenoriaethu tuag at y defnydd, neu ydych chi'n parhau efo'r ffocws yna o ran y targed o filiwn o siaradwyr erbyn 2050?
Thank you, Minister. Clearly, we have had, in this last year, the figures in terms of the census. Clearly, you've outlined the further work that's required in terms of analysing and understanding why there are differences. But, you mentioned the use of the language, obviously, and you've also referred to the target of increasing the numbers, so do you feel, therefore, that some of the plans have been restricted because of the financial challenges and the pressures on the budget, and that you've had to re-prioritise in terms of usage, or are you continuing with that focus in terms of the target of a million Welsh speakers by 2050?
Na, mae'r ffocws, wrth gwrs—dŷn ni ddim yn newid y targed, mae hynny'n sicr. Mae ffigurau'r cyfrifiad yn dangos gostyngiad. Mae hynny, wrth gwrs, fel dwi wedi sôn droeon mewn cyd-destunau eraill, yn destun o siom, ond mae wir yn bwysig gweld y cyd-destun ehangach, a'r ffynonellau eraill yn dangos cynnydd. Felly, mae angen gwaith, fel dwi wedi sôn y tu allan i'r drafodaeth am gyllideb, mae angen cysoni'r data hynny a deall y cyd-destun.
O ran impact y cyfrifiad ar y gyllideb hon, wrth gwrs, rhyw wythnos cyn i'r gyllideb gael ei datgan, cawson ni fynediad at y ffigurau. Dŷn ni ddim yn cael rhagrybudd o'r hyn sy'n cael ei gyhoeddi; rŷn ni'n gweld y ffigurau yr un amser ag y mae'r cyhoedd yn eu gweld nhw. A dyw'r ffigurau i gyd ddim gyda ni, gyda llaw; mae mwy o ddata yn dod y mis hwn, rwy'n credu, neu'r mis nesaf, sydd yn mynd i fod yn rhan bwysig o'n dadansoddiad ni. Felly, byddwn ni'n edrych ar hynny dros y misoedd nesaf. Ac wedyn, rwy'n credu bydd impact y ffigurau hynny'n cael eu teimlo yn y gyllideb nesaf. Ond ar ddiwedd y dydd, y flaenoriaeth hirdymor yw cyrraedd y nod o filiwn o siaradwyr.
Gyda llaw, rôn ni'n sôn yn gynharach am bwysigrwydd defnydd, dyw'r cyfrifiad ddim yn dweud dim byd wrthon ni am ddefnydd, felly mae'n rhaid datgymalu'r ddau beth hynny o ran sut rŷch chi'n strwythuro'r gyllideb. Mae gyda ni ffynonellau eraill sy'n sôn wrthon ni am faint o bobl sy’n defnyddio’r Gymraeg. Mae'r ffigurau yna yn fy nhystiolaeth ysgrifenedig, dwi’n credu. Felly, mae’r ddau beth hynny’n wahanol iawn.
Well, we're not changing the target, certainly. The census figures have shown a reduction. And as I've mentioned in many other contexts, that's a disappointment to us, but it's very important to see the broader context and that other sources of information do show progress. So, outside the budget discussions, we need to understand that data and understand the context in which it exists.
In terms of the impact of the census on this budget, of course, the census results were only released about a week before the budget was published. We don't get any access to those figures beforehand; we receive them at the same time as the public. And we don't have all the figures; there is more data to be published this month or next, which will be an important part of our analysis. So, we will look at that over coming months. And then, I think the impact of those figures will be felt in the next budget. But at the end of the day, the long-term priority is to reach the target of a million Welsh speakers.
By the way, I mentioned earlier the importance of language use, the census tells us nothing about language use, so we need to disconnect those two things in terms of how you structure the budget. We have other information sources telling us how many people are using the Welsh language. And I think that's included in the written evidence provided. So, those two things are very different indeed.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Dwi’n gwybod y bydd Tom Giffard eisiau mynd ymhellach ar hyn. Mae gennym ni—dim ond i’r rhai sydd yn ymuno’n rhithiol wybod, mae gennym ni ysgol wedi ymuno efo ni'r bore yma y tu cefn ar y funud, felly, croeso i chi i’n pwyllgor ni hefyd. Mae’n braf iawn gweld pobl yn dychwelyd nôl i stad y Senedd hefyd. Os caf i droi at Tom Giffard.
Thank you very much. I know that Tom Giffard will want to delve further on this. For those who are joining us virtually, we do have a school that's joined us in the public gallery, so welcome to our committee as well. It's very good to see people returning to the Senedd estate as well. If I could turn to Tom Giffard.
Thank you. Going back to the point that we were talking about a moment ago about the census, you said that you didn't have all that data in as it stands, and obviously, more and more data is coming in all the time. What allowances have you made in that budget, if any, for a change in that data? So, as the picture changes, have you got flexibility to be able to change your priority in terms of where you're spending the money?
Yn ystod y flwyddyn, chi'n meddwl?
During the year—is that what you mean?
Wel, mae rhaid edrych ar y data yn ei gyd-destun, felly, dwi ddim yn credu ein bod ni’n mynd i wneud penderfyniadau yn y misoedd nesaf yn sgil hynny. Mae hynny wir yn bwysig, i gofio hynny.
Un o’r pethau a oedd yn benderfyniad yr oedd galw arnaf i i'w wneud fel Gweinidog oedd, os edrychwch chi ar yr holl bethau rŷn ni wedi bod yn eu gwneud dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf, er enghraifft, mae llawer o’r ymyraethau rheini—gallen ni fod wedi aros i weld beth oedd canlyniadau’r cyfrifiad cyn mynd ati i fuddsoddi yn y pethau hynny. Ond fy marn i oedd, beth bynnag oedd y cyfrifiad yn dangos, p’un ai bod e hyd yn oed yn dangos cynnydd, mae dal angen gwneud y pethau hynny rŷn ni wedi bod yn bwriadu eu gwneud. Felly, byddwch chi’n gweld y patrwm yna yn y cyfnod cyn y cyfrifiad hefyd.
Un peth fydden ni’n dweud, efallai, yw, petasech chi’n gofyn, am y darlun mawr, 'Beth yw un o’r prif takeouts wrth y cyfrifiad?' subject i edrych ar y data yn fanylach, dwi’n credu bod mwy gyda ni i’w wneud yn y maes o fuddsoddi, i sicrhau bod profiad plant a phobl ifanc yn y system addysg cyfrwng Saesneg o ddysgu Cymraeg yn well. Ond, fel mae’n digwydd, mae’r gyllideb honno'n cael ei chynyddu yn y flwyddyn hon, beth bynnag, oherwydd mae angen sicrhau bod ni’n codi sgiliau’r gweithlu er mwyn gallu darparu’n well yn y rhan honno o’r sector. Felly, roedd cynlluniau ar waith eisoes i wneud hynny.
Well, we need to look at the data in its context, so, I don't think that we will be making decisions in the next months in light of that. It's important to bear that in mind.
One of the things that was a decision that I as Minister was required to make was that if you look at all of the things that we've been doing over the past 12 months, for example, many of those interventions could have been delayed until the census results, before investing in them. But my view was that, whatever the census showed us, even if it showed progress, we'd still need to have done those things that we have done. So, you would have seen that pattern in the period before the census, too.
One thing I would say is, if you were to ask about the bigger picture, 'What are the main takeouts for the census?' it's subject to looking at the data in more detail, of course, but I do think that we have more to do in the area of investing, in ensuring that the experiences of children and young people in the English-medium education system as they learn Welsh is improved. But as it happens, that budget is increasing in this year in any case, because we do need to ensure that we raise the skill level of the workforce in order to provide better in that part of the sector. So, there were already plans in place to do that.
And one of the things that was quite clear, I thought, was that out-of-school Welsh use wasn't the strongest, it probably would be fair to say, so, how does this budget prioritise 'out of a learning setting', if you like, Welsh use?
Ble mae’r data yna’n dod o?
Where does that data come from?
Sori, doedd e ddim yn y census; fy marn i oedd e, ond mae'n glir bod hyn yn broblem.
Sorry, it wasn't in the census, but it's clear that this is a problem.
Wel, mae angen gwneud mwy yn hynny, felly, ond fel rôn i’n dweud yn fras ar y cychwyn, os edrychwch chi ar lle mae’r pwyslais yn y gyllideb, y rhan o’r gyllideb sydd yn cefnogi defnydd yw’r elfen fwyaf yn y gyllideb—rhyw £22 miliwn. Ac mae hynny’n cynnwys lot o bethau yn y cyd-destun rŷch chi’n sôn am, sef defnydd y tu allan i fyd yr ysgol, er enghraifft, mae'n cynnwys cyllideb dysgu Cymraeg i bobl ifanc 18 i 25 nawr, felly mae hynny wedi bod yn ymestyn polisi. Felly dyna'r prif bwyslais, os hoffwch chi, o ran yr elfen fwyaf yn y gyllideb.
Byddwn i hefyd yn dweud, gyda llaw, os edrychwch chi ar yr elfen Cymraeg mewn addysg, rŷn ni wedi sôn yn fras jest nawr am drochi, mae lot o'r gyllideb honno yn cael ei defnyddio i gynyddu capasiti yn y system, i gynyddu mynediad at addysg Gymraeg yn hytrach na thalu am yr addysg ei hunan, i sicrhau bod mynediad hafal gan bobl. Hefyd, os edrychwch chi ar elfen leiaf y gyllideb o dair rhan, sef yr arian sydd yn ariannu'r comisiynydd, mae elfen o hynny hefyd yn gweithio mewn partneriaeth gyda ni yn ffocysu ar hyrwyddo defnydd. Felly, mae elfennau o hynny ym mhob rhan o'r gyllideb.
Well, more needs to be done in that regard, but as I said at the outset, if you look at where the emphasis of the budget is, the part focused on usage is the largest element of that budget—some £22 million. And that includes many things in the context that you talk about—usage outside of the school gates, for example, it includes a budget for teaching Welsh to young people between 18 and 25, so that's been a policy development. So, that's the main emphasis in terms of the largest element of the budget.
I would also say, by the way, that if you look at the Welsh in education element, I've briefly mentioned immersion, well, much of that budget is used to increase capacity within the system, to provide access to Welsh-medium education rather than pay for the education itself, and ensure that people have equal access. Also, if you look at the smallest element of the budget, of three parts, namely funding for the commissioner, then an element of that, too, is about working in partnership with us and focusing on promoting usage. So, there are elements of that in all parts of the budget.
One final one, you're clearly someone who cares about the Welsh language, and, obviously, education is also in your portfolio, but you'll also understand that, to truly raise the standards of the Welsh language, it needs to be a cross-Government priority across a number of portfolio areas. How are you ensuring that, not only yourself, but all the other Ministers and all of the other departments are treating Welsh with exactly the same passion and energy that you would?
Diolch am hynny. O ran atebolrwydd, fi sydd yma heddiw yn ateb y cwestiynau, ond gall dim un Gweinidog y Gymraeg lwyddo i wneud y lefel o gynnydd sydd angen heb fod gyda chi gydweithredu ar draws y Llywodraeth yn gyfan gwbl. Beth sydd wedi bod yn digwydd dros y misoedd diwethaf yw mae'r Cabinet nawr yn cael trafodaeth ar bolisi Cymraeg a sut mae hynny'n cael ei brif-ffrydio drwy feysydd polisi yn gyffredinol bob tymor, ac, yn sgil un o'r cyfarfodydd hynny, wedi bod yn cael cyfres llwyddiannus o gyfarfodydd gyda phob un Gweinidog arall yn edrych ar eu profiad nhw o'r Gymraeg eu hunain, gyda llaw, ond hefyd beth mwy gallwn ni ei wneud i gydweithio rhwng fy adran i a'u hadrannau nhw i brif-ffrydio'r Gymraeg, nid fel elfen o tick box pan fo cyngor yn dod i ddweud, 'Ydyn, rŷn ni wedi ystyried hyn', ond ein bod ni wir yn mynd i'r afael gyda'r impact ar y Gymraeg o benderfyniadau—rhai yn bositif, rhai yn negyddol—o bob penderfyniad polisi. Felly, mae'r drafodaeth honno yn digwydd; mae wedi bod yn digwydd ers sbel, ond rwy'n teimlo bod hynny'n digwydd efallai gyda mwy o ffocws nawr.
Os edrychwch chi ar draws y gyllideb yn gyffredinol, rŷch chi wedi cael tystiolaeth y bore yma wrth Weinidog yr Economi a'r Gweinidog diwylliant. Mae amryw o'r pethau maen nhw'n buddsoddi ynddyn nhw'n cael effaith ar y Gymraeg—y llyfrgell genedlaethol, y cyngor llyfrau, yn y maes iechyd, yn y maes newid hinsawdd—mae buddsoddiad ym mhob un o'r meysydd hynny yn cael effaith ar y Gymraeg.
Dau beth y byddwn i'n dweud os caf i, jest i roi nodyn o gyd-destun ichi, mae gyda chi ddewis, os hoffwch chi, neu ryw fath o densiwn, efallai, ar un lefel. Os ŷch chi'n sôn am ariannu'r Gymraeg yn benodol, fel rhaglen benodol i ariannu'r Gymraeg, mae ychydig o risg yn ddiwylliannol bod pobl wedyn yn meddwl, 'Wel, dyna'r bit sy'n delio â'r Gymraeg'. Felly, mae'n rhaid cadw cydbwysedd fanna. Mae'n rhaid gwneud y ddau.
Yr elfen arall, byddwn i'n dweud, yw wrth eich bod chi'n edrych ar y gyllideb, rŷn ni eisiau gweld beth yw impact y gyllideb ar y cyfan ar y Gymraeg. Bydd elfennau'n bositif a bydd rhai efallai ddim mor bositif; mae hynny'n naturiol. Mae gwaith yn digwydd ar hyn o bryd i wella dealltwriaeth o'r impact ar y Gymraeg o fewn meysydd polisi a phan fydd hynny wedi symud ymlaen, rwyf i'n credu y bydd darlun cliriach gyda ni ar draws y gyllideb i gyd o'r net effect, os hoffwch chi.
Thank you for that. In terms of accountability, I am here today, of course, answering your questions, but not one Minister for the Welsh language can succeed in making the level of progress needed without having collaboration across Government as a whole. What's been happening over the last few months is that the Cabinet now has a discussion on Welsh policy and how that is mainstreamed through all policy areas in general every term, and, as a result of one of those meetings, has had a successful series of meetings with every other Minister, looking at their experience of the Welsh language, themselves, but also, what more can do to collaborate with their departments to mainstream the Welsh language, not as a tick box element when advice comes along to say, 'Yes, we have considered this', but that we really address the impact on the Welsh language in terms of decisions—some positive, some negative—in terms of every policy decision. So, that discussion is happening. It has been ongoing for a while, but I feel that that is happening now with more of a focus.
If you look across the budget in general, you've had evidence this morning from the Minister for Economy and the Minister for culture. A number of the things that they're investing in have an impact on the Welsh language—the national library, the book council, in the fields of health and climate change—investment in each of those areas is having an impact on the Welsh language.
Two things I would say, if I may, just to provide you with context, you have a choice, if you like, or maybe some tension at one level. If you're talking about funding the Welsh language specifically, as a specific programme to fund the Welsh language, there is some risk culturally that people will then think, 'That's the bit that deals with the Welsh language'. So, there's a need to strike a balance there and to keep that balance there. You need to do both.
Also, when you look at the budget, you need to look at the impact of the budget on the Welsh language as a whole. There will be positive elements and some may not be as positive; that's natural. Work is happening at the moment to improve understanding of the impact on the Welsh language in policy areas and when that will have moved forward, I think we'll have a clearer picture across the whole budget of the net effect, if you like.
Diolch. Gaf i ofyn ichi, Weinidog, mi glywson ni dystiolaeth y bore yma o ran yr elfennau diwylliannol a chwaraeon yn benodol, rydych chi'n sôn ynglŷn â'r pwyslais o ran eich cyllideb chi o ran defnydd ac ati, oes gennych chi bryder—? Un o'r pethau a oedd yn dod allan o'r dystiolaeth oedd, yn amlwg, awdurdodau lleol a gwasanaethau sydd ddim yn statudol, felly, sy'n gallu chwarae rhan ganolog o ran y cynlluniau strategol y Gymraeg mewn addysg hefyd, yn enwedig o ran defnydd y tu hwnt i'r dosbarth, os ydyn ni'n meddwl am chwaraeon drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg, ac ati? Oes gennych chi bryder, oherwydd y toriadau rydyn ni'n eu gweld efo awdurdodau lleol, bod hynna, efallai, yn mynd i effeithio o ran defnydd? Neu, ydy hynna'n rhan o'ch meddwl chi o ran y pwyslais efo'r defnydd, oherwydd efallai bod yna risg i rai o'r gwasanaethau sydd ddim yn statudol ond sydd yn amlwg yn allweddol bwysig o ran y defnydd?
Thank you. May I ask you, Minister, we heard evidence this morning in terms of cultural and sporting elements, specifically, now you're talking about the emphasis in your budget on language use, et cetera, do you have a concern—? One of the things that emerged from the evidence is that, clearly, local authorities and non-statutory services can play a central role in terms of the WESPs, particularly in terms of usage outside of the classroom, if we think about sporting opportunities through the medium of the Welsh language, for example? Do you have concerns, because of the cuts that we're seeing in local authorities, that that may have an impact on usage? Or is that part of your thinking with your emphasis on usage, that there is a risk to those non-statutory services that are clearly crucially important in terms of language usage?
Wel, mae hwnna'n gwestiwn teg iawn. Wrth gwrs, mae pwysau ar gynghorau lleol ac, wrth gwrs, mae pethau anstatudol wastad yn fwy bregus yn y cyd-destun hwnnw; mae hynny'n rhywbeth rydyn ni'n deall. Byddwn i'n dweud, os edrychwch chi ar lle rŷn ni'n defnyddio'n grantiau, mae hynny'n cael—. Er enghraifft, un o'r cyrff mae awdurdodau lleol yn gallu cydweithio â nhw er mwyn sicrhau bod y gwaith da maen nhw'n ei wneud yn y cynlluniau strategol hefyd yn cael impact yn y gymuned yw perthynas gyda'r Urdd, er enghraifft, sy'n gwneud gwaith ffantastig o ran gweithgaredd Cymraeg diwylliannol, ond hefyd ym maes chwaraeon—roeddech chi'n sôn am hynny—a'r maes prentisiaethau, felly, amryw o bethau. Felly, mae'r arian rŷn ni'n dyrannu iddyn nhw yn fwriadol, felly, er mwyn cynyddu capasiti'r Urdd i gydweithio gyda chyrff eraill. Dyna pam mae'r cynllun grant mor bwysig, fel ein bod ni'n gallu ariannu'r cyrff yma yn uniongyrchol, os hoffwch chi, fel eu bod nhw'n gallu cydweithio, wedyn, â chynghorau. Ond, mae'r risg rŷch chi'n sôn amdano fe yn un real, yn sicr.
That's a very fair question, because, of course, there are pressures on local authorities and non-statutory issues are more vulnerable in that context; that's something we understand. I would say that, if you look at where we use grants, that has—. For example, one of the organisations that local authorities can work with in order to ensure that the good work that they're doing in their WESPs also has an impact in the community is the relationship with the Urdd, which is doing fantastic work in relation to Welsh language and culture, but also in sport—you mentioned that—and apprenticeships, so, a wide variety of things. So, the funding that we allocate to them is intentional to increase the Urdd's capacity to work with other bodies. That's why a grant scheme is important, so that we can fund these bodies directly, if you like, so that they can then work with councils. But the risk that you're talking about is a real one, certainly.
Diolch, Weinidog. Os gaf i ofyn efallai'n benodol o ran Mudiad Meithrin, ydych chi'n credu bod y cyllid a ddarperir iddyn nhw i ehangu a datblygu capasiti blynyddoedd cynnar cyfrwng Cymraeg yn cael effaith ddigonol o ran argaeledd a mynediad ledled Cymru?
Thank you, Minister. If I could ask specifically in terms of Mudiad Meithrin, do you believe that the funding provided to them to expand and develop Welsh-medium early years capacity is having a sufficient impact on the availability and access across Wales?
Mae beth bynnag yw'r gair Cymraeg am 'rolling programme' gyda nhw. Felly, wrth gwrs, dyw'r gwaith i gyd ddim wedi'i wneud. Felly, wrth gwrs, bydd rhannau o Gymru lle does dim darpariaeth ddigonol ar hyn o bryd. Ond, mae'r cynllun sydd gan Mudiad Meithrin i gynyddu'r lefel o ddarpariaeth ar darged—a dweud y gwir, mae tu hwnt i'r targed mewn rhai mannau. Y cynllun yw, dros tymor y Senedd hon, i agor 60 setting newydd, ynghyd â'r 43 agorwyd yn y cyfnod cyntaf o dair mlynedd. Felly, maen nhw ar drac ar gyfer hynny. Mae hynny'n rhyw fath o run rate blynyddol o 12 setting newydd, ond ar fwy nag un flwyddyn, maen nhw wedi cynyddu yn gyflymach na hynny. Felly, maen nhw ar drac i wneud hynny, felly dwi'n ffyddiog bod y ddarpariaeth yn mynd i ddod. Wrth gwrs, mae'n cymryd amser i agor, ac un o'r heriau sydd yn constraint ar hynny, wrth gwrs, yw gweithlu. Felly, rŷn ni'n buddsoddi hefyd o ran cefnogi'r Mudiad gydag annog pobl i ddod i mewn i'r sector, ond hefyd i gael cymwysterau trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.
Whatever the Welsh word is for 'rolling programme', they have that. So, all the work hasn't been completed. So, of course, there will be areas of Wales where there isn't sufficient provision currently. But, the scheme that Mudiad Meithrin has to increase the level of provision is on target—actually, it's beyond the target in some areas. The plan is, over the term of this Senedd, to open 60 new settings, along with the 43 that were opened in the first three-year period. They're on track to complete that. That's a run rate of some 12 new settings a year, but on more than one year, that has increased at a quicker pace than that. So, they're on track to do that, so, I am confident that provision is going to be established. But, it does takes time for them to open, and one of the challenges that is a constraint on that, of course, is workforce. So, we're also investing in supporting Mudiad Meithrin with encouraging people into the sector, but also to gain qualifications through the medium of Welsh.
Ac mae'r buddsoddiad hwnnw wedi gallu cael ei ddiogelu, felly, yn y gyllideb ddrafft.
And that investment has been safeguarded, therefore, in the draft budget.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Gaf i symud ymlaen at Alun Davies, os gwelwch yn dda?
Thank you very much. May I move on to Alun Davies, please?
Diolch. Dwi eisiau parhau gyda'r sgwrs ynglŷn ag addysg. Dwi'n licio'r ffordd dŷch chi'n siarad, Weinidog, a'r tôn dŷch chi'n defnyddio, a dwi'n hoff iawn o ambell i beth dŷch chi wedi'i ddweud o ran sut dŷch chi'n gweld y Gymraeg yn ffynnu ac yn datblygu yn y dyfodol. Un o'r pethau dwi eisiau gweld, a dwi'n credu ein bod ni i gyd eisiau gweld, yw mwy o gyfle i blant gael eu haddysg drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg—dim jest dysgu, ond addysg drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg. Yn y cyd-destun ariannol presennol, beth dwi'n clywed gan gynghorau yw bod yna ddigon o arian ychwanegol yn dod o Lywodraeth Cymru i greu ysgol Gymraeg newydd, ond does dim digon yn y gyllideb i barhau i ariannu rhai o'r ysgolion Cymraeg lle mae ysgolion newydd yn cael eu hagor. Sut fyddech chi'n ymateb i hynny?
Thank you. I want to continue the conversation on education. I like the way you speak, Minister, and your tone, and I do like some of what you've said in terms of how you see the Welsh language prospering and developing for the future. One of the things that I want to see—and I think we all want to see this—is more opportunities for children to be educated through the medium of Welsh—not just to learn Welsh, but to have their education through the medium of Welsh. In the current financial context, what I hear from councils is that there is sufficient funding coming from Welsh Government to create new Welsh-medium schools, but there isn't enough in the budget to continue to fund some Welsh-medium schools where new schools are opened. How would you respond to that?
Un o'r heriau wrth agor ysgol Gymraeg newydd yw eich bod chi, mewn rhai cymunedau, yn mynd yn gyflymach na'r galw. Dyna beth rŷn ni eisiau'i wneud; rŷn ni eisiau helpu i greu'r galw. Mae risg refeniw yn dod yn sgil hynny, onid oes? Beth rŷch chi'n gweld, efallai, yw penderfyniadau i ddatblygu ysgolion, ond efallai y gallech chi ddatblygu rhai yn fwy petasech chi'n gallu cymryd fwy o risg ar y refeniw. Ryn ni wedi gallu dod i gytundeb ar elfennau o hynny gydag awdurdodau. Fe wnaf i ofyn, efallai, i Owain ddweud ychydig mwy am sut ryn ni'n gwneud hynny. Ond, mewn rhannau o Gymru—mae hyn yn digwydd yn y gogledd mewn rhai cymunedau—rŷn ni wedi gallu cydweithio gydag awdurdodau i geisio datrys rhai o'r heriau hynny. Wyt ti eisiau ychwanegu at hynny?
One of the challenges of opening a new Welsh language school is that, in some communities, you go faster than the demand. That's what we want to do; we want to help create the demand. There's a revenue risk as a result of that, isn't there? What you see, perhaps, are decisions to develop schools, but maybe you could develop larger ones if you could take more of a risk on the revenue. We have been able to come to an agreement on elements of that with authorities. Perhaps I'll ask Owain to say a little bit more about how we do that. But, in parts of Wales—this is happening in north Wales in some communities—we have been able to work with local authorities to solve some of those challenges. Do you want to talk about that?
Ie. Yn sicr, mae'n rhan bwysig o'r trafodaethau mae'r Gweinidog yn eu cael ar lefel gweinidogol, a hefyd dŷn ni'n eu cael fel swyddogion gydag awdurdodau lleol o ran eu cynlluniau CSCAau nhw. Dyw hwnna ddim jest yn bwysig o ran trafod y cyfalaf ond hefyd y refeniw ac edrych ar sut maen nhw'n cynllunio nid jest yr ysgolion Cymraeg ond hefyd o ran yr ysgolion Saesneg yn yr ardal yn rhan bwysig o hynny. So, dŷn ni'n gwybod, mewn rhai mannau o Gymru dros y blynyddoedd nesaf, fod yna gwymp yn mynd i fod o ran niferoedd disgyblion. Felly, mae'n hollol hanfodol bod awdurdodau lleol yn meddwl am hynny ac yn cynllunio ymlaen llaw—
Yes. Certainly, it's important as part of the conversations that the Minister has at a ministerial level, and as officials, we also have discussions with local authorities on their WESPs. That's not only an issue of discussing capital, but also an issue of revenue and how they plan not just for Welsh-medium schools but also English-medium schools in the area is an important part of that. We know that, in some parts of Wales over the next few years, there's going to be a fall in pupil numbers. So, it is crucial that local authorities are thinking about that and forward planning—
Ond ydych chi'n gweld cyfrifoldeb ar Lywodraeth Cymru i helpu awdurdodau lle mae yna broblemau, neu ble mae'n anodd yn ariannol—nid jest y cyfalaf i ariannu adeiladu ysgol newydd Gymraeg, ond wedyn, fel dŷch chi'n dweud, Mr Lloyd, yr arian refeniw yn y dyfodol?
But do you see a responsibility for Welsh Government to support authorities where there are problems, or where it's difficult financially—not just in terms of capital, funding the building of new schools, but then, as you say, Mr Lloyd, the revenue funding in the future?
Wel, does dim pot refeniw penodol ar gyfer hynny o beth. Fel rŷch chi'n gwybod, mae'n—
Well, there's no specific revenue pot for that. As you know—
Ie, a dyna'r pwynt dwi'n ei wneud.
Yes, and that's the point I'm making.
Mae'n dod trwy'r RSG fel rhan o setliad llywodraeth leol. So—
It comes through the RSG as part of the local government settlement. So—
So, does dim elfen ychwanegol i ddatblygu addysg Gymraeg, nac oes?
So, there's no additional element to develop Welsh-medium education, is there?
Nac oes, ond mae'n gorfod bod yn rhan hanfodol o'u cynlluniau—
No, but it does have to be a key part of their plans—
So, mae'n fater i'r awdurdodau lleol.
So, it's a matter for local authorities.
Ac yn rhan o'u cynllunio nhw ar gyfer addysg yn gyffredinol.
And part of their planning for education in general.
A fy mhwynt i yw does dim bwriad gan y Llywodraeth i gynnig unrhyw gymorth ychwanegol i awdurdodau yn ystod y blynyddoedd nesaf.
And my point is that the Government has no intention of offering any additional support to local authorities during the next few years.
Wel, o ran refeniw, mae hynny'n cael ei setlo trwy'r RSG; dyna'r cynllun. Ond wrth gwrs, wrth edrych ar y cynlluniau strategol, mae'r trafodaethau yma i gyd ynghlwm yn y cwestiwn o faint o ddarpariaeth gallwch chi ei gwneud dros y cyfnod nesaf. Rŷn ni'n bwriadu agor 23 ysgol gynradd newydd, er enghraifft. Ond un o'r pethau sydd yn bwysig ei gadw mewn cof, rwy'n credu, fan hyn hefyd yw dŷn ni ddim yn mynd i allu cyrraedd y nod jest trwy agor ysgolion cyfrwng Cymraeg newydd; mae symud ysgolion ar hyd y continwwm ieithyddol yn wir yn bwysig.
Well, in terms of revenue, that's settled through the RSG. But, in looking at the strategic plans, all of these discussions are related to the issue of how much provision you can make. We intend to open 23 new primary schools, for example. But one of the things that's important to bear in mind here too is that we're not going to be able to reach our target just through having new Welsh-medium schools; moving schools along the continuum is really important.
Cytuno, cytuno. Roeddwn i'n gofyn cwestiwn penodol—
Yes, I agree. I was asking a specific question—
Dwi'n gwybod, ond yr ateb—. Beth rwy'n dweud yw ei fod e'n rhan o'r darlun.
I know, but the answer—. What I'm saying is that that's part of the picture.
Dwi'n gwybod bod Carolyn eisiau dod mewn yn sydyn ar hyn.
I know that Carolyn just wanted to come in quickly on that.
Yes, just regarding the development of Welsh-medium schools, Welsh-medium education, I understand there is a shortage of Welsh language teachers already. Have you any thoughts of incentives or bursaries for people who might be going into teaching to go into Welsh-medium education, or do that little bit of extra work to be confident in studying in Welsh—an incentive like we do have for nurses, nursing bursaries? Thank you.
Mae gyda ni'r cynllun Iaith Athrawn Yfory, sy'n darparu cymhellion ariannol i bobl i ddod mewn i'r sector, ond mae'r Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol yn peilota bursary hefyd. A hefyd, fel rŷch chi'n dweud, mae wir yn bwysig ffeindio ffyrdd o ddenu pobl mewn. Mae elfen o honno yn ariannol, ond mae elfennau eraill ynghlwm yn hynny. Mae gyda ni gynllun 10 mlynedd i gydweithio â phartneriaid ar draws Cymru i sicrhau ein bod ni'n gallu edrych ar ffyrdd amgen i gymhwyso fel athro, neu hefyd edrych ar le, efallai, byddai pobl y gallen ni eu denu mewn i'r proffesiwn. Felly, mae'r Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol hefyd yn gweithio ar greu rhwydwaith o fyfyrwyr sydd wedi symud o Gymru i ddysgu, i astudio, yn Lloegr ond sy'n medru'r Gymraeg, a chadw cysylltiad gyda nhw a'u denu nhw nôl, er enghraifft. Felly, mae angen bod yn greadigol iawn, rwy'n credu, yn sut rŷn ni'n mynd i'r afael â hyn.
We have the Iaith Athrawon Yfory scheme, which provides a financial incentive for people to come into the sector, but the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol is also piloting a bursary. Also, as you say, it's very important to find ways of attracting people in. An element of that is financial, but there are other elements related to that too. We have a 10-year plan, where we're working with partners across Wales to ensure that we can look at alternative ways of qualifying as teachers, and also looking at people we could attract into the profession. So, the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol is also working on creating a network of students who've moved from Wales to study in England but who are Welsh speaking, and it's a matter of keeping in touch with them and attracting them back. So, we need to be very creative in how we tackle this, I think.
Diolch. Os caf i fynd nôl at Alun Davies.
Thank you. If I can go back to Alun Davies.
Ocê. Un o'r—. Gwnes i ddechrau fy nghwestiynau y bore yma trwy ddweud fy mod i'n hoff iawn o'r tôn rydych chi'n ei defnyddio, Gweinidog, ac un o'r pethau dwi'n licio yw'r bwyslais ar ddefnydd o'r Gymraeg. Dwi'n credu bod cytundeb bod angen inni weld mwy o ddefnydd o'r Gymraeg. Ond trwy chwyddiant, mae'r gyllideb wedi'i thorri'n sylweddol yn ystod y flwyddyn yma, blwyddyn nesaf. Felly, pa impact ydych chi'n rhagweld ar ddefnydd o'r Gymraeg os yw'r sefydliadau, y mudiadau sy'n trio hybu defnydd o'r Gymraeg yn gweld toriadau mewn termau real yn eu cyllideb?
Okay. One of the—. I started my questions this morning by saying that I like your tone, Minister, and one of the things that I like is the emphasis on the use of the Welsh language. I think there is agreement that we need to see more use of the Welsh language. But, because of inflation, the budget has been reduced substantially during this year and next year. So, what impact do you foresee on the use of the Welsh language if the organisations and bodies that are trying to promote the use of the Welsh language see reductions in real terms to their budgets?
Wel, mae hynny'n issue, wrth gwrs. Felly, mae rhai o'r partneriaid rŷn ni'n eu hariannu wedi cael cyllideb fflat dros gyfnod yn ddiweddar, ac mae hynny wrth gwrs am wasgedd ariannol, ac wrth gwrs mae hynny'n eu galluogi nhw i wario llai ar yr initiatives maen nhw'n eu gwneud. Beth rŷn ni wedi'i wneud hefyd, er enghraifft—rŷn ni'n adolygu'r cynllun grant yn gyffredinol ar hyn o bryd i weld os yw e'n gyson gydag amcanion 'Cymraeg 2050'. Mae hynny'n rhannol yn ymwneud â faint o arian mae'r cyrff yn ei gael, ond hefyd dros ba gyfnod, fel ein bod ni'n gallu creu, o fewn y cyd-destun o wasgedd, fel oeddech chi'n sôn amdano fe, mwy o hyblygrwydd gyda nhw yn sut i ddefnyddio'r arian yna, fod gyda nhw gyfle i weld grantiau mwy hirdymor fel eu bod nhw'n gallu cynllunio yn well, fel bod hynny'n rhoi cyfle iddyn nhw i liniaru rhywfaint ar y pwysau ariannol.
Rŷn ni hefyd, er enghraifft, gyda'r mentrau iaith, wedi bod yn pwysleisio'r flaenoriaeth o ymrymuso cymunedol—hynny yw, nid jest darparu eu hunain, ond cydweithio â mudiadau eraill. Felly, un o'r pethau rŷn ni wedi gallu ei wneud, er bod y gyllideb wedi bod yn fflat i rai o'r cyrff hynny, yw creu cronfa newydd gyda'r corff Cwmpas, sydd yn creu mentrau cydweithredol, ac rŷn ni wedi gweithio gyda rhai o'r mentrau iaith i greu mentrau cydweithredol tu fewn i'r fframwaith hwnnw—rhyw bedair o'r rheini. Felly, cydweithio, partneriaeth, yw lot ohono fe, o gofio'r cyd-destun rŷch chi'n sôn amdano fe.
Well, that is an issue, of course. So, some of the partners we're funding have been given a flat settlement recently, and that's because of financial pressures, and that enables them to spend less on the initiatives that they're involved with, of course. What we've also done, for example, is we're reviewing the grant programme generally now to see if it's in line with the objectives of 'Cymraeg 2050'. That is partially about how much funding organisations receive, but also over what period, so that, within the context of financial pressures, as you mentioned, we can create more flexibility for them in how they use that funding, they would have the opportunity to see longer-term grants so that they can plan more effectively, and that would give them an opportunity to mitigate some of the financial pressures that they face.
We've also, for example, with the mentrau iaith, been emphasising the priority of empowering communities—so, not just providing themselves, but working with other organisations. So, one of the things we have been able to do, although the budget has been flat for some of those bodies, is to create a new fund with Cwmpas, which develops co-operative initiatives, and we have worked with some of the mentrau iaith to develop co-operative enterprises within that framework—about four of them. So, co-operation and partnership are very important, given the context that you mentioned.
Iawn. Dyw partneriaeth ddim yn helpu i dalu'r biliau trydan.
Okay. But partnerships don't help to pay the electricity bills.
Nac yw, ond mae'r gronfa arian, ac rŷn ni wedi darparu cronfeydd newydd hefyd.
No, but there is the fund, and we have provided new funding streams too.
Ocê. So, sut ydych chi'n rhagweld hynny yn cael impact ar y mudiadau a'r sefydliadau rŷn ni'n eu trafod, pan ydyn nhw'n gweld arian craidd yn cael ei golli oherwydd chwyddiant? Sut ydych chi'n gweld y gronfa newydd yma yn cynnig cymorth iddyn nhw?
Okay. So, how do you foresee that having an impact on the organisations that we're discussing, when they see their core funding being reduced because of inflation? How do you see this new fund offering support?
Wel, mae'r gronfa yn cael ei rhedeg gan Cwmpas, sef y corff cydweithredol yng Nghymru, a beth rŷn ni'n ei argymell, yn cydweithio â'r mentrau, yw—
Well, the fund is run by Cwmpas, the co-operative body in Wales, and what we recommend, working with the mentrau—
Dyna beth dwi ddim cweit yn ei ddeall. Rwy'n croesawu fe, gyda llaw. Does gen i ddim problem gyda fe, ond dwi ddim yn siŵr fy mod i'n deall sut mae'r gronfa yma yn mynd i helpu'r sefydliadau sydd wedi gweld cwymp yn eu harian rheolaidd nhw.
That's what I don't quite understand. I welcome it, by the way. I have no problem with it, but I'm not quite sure that I understand how this fund is going to help the organisations that have seen a decline in their core funding.
Ocê. Ti eisiau dod mewn ar yr elfen manylder?
Okay. Would you like to come in on this element?
Mae'r Urdd wedi derbyn £1.2 miliwn yn ychwanegol yn y tymor yma, ac hefyd rydyn ni'n ariannu'r Eisteddfod Genedlaethol hyd at £1 miliwn. Rydyn ni hefyd wedi ymrwymo i edrych ar gyllideb y mentrau iaith, fel mae'r Gweinidog wedi ei ddweud, yn sgil yr arolwg grant. Ond, fel man cychwyn, oherwydd ein bod ni'n gwybod bod y costau ariannol yn pwyso, rydyn ni wedi ymrwymo i edrych yn yr wythnosau nesaf ar hynny hefyd cyn inni gael argymhellion yr adroddiad ar y grant yn ei gyfanrwydd.
The Urdd has received £1.2 million in addition this term, and also we're funding the Eisteddfod Genedlaethol up to £1 million. We've also committed to looking at the budget of the mentrau iaith, as the Minister has said, following the grant review. But, as a starting point, because we know the financial costs are pressing, we've promised to look at this in the next few weeks before we have the recommendations from the report on the grant as a whole.
Ocê. Wel, dwi'n gwerthfawrogi hynny, Mrs Webb, ond dwi ddim cweit yn siŵr ei fod e'n ateb y cwestiwn gofynnais i. I chi, Weinidog, ydych chi'n bwriadu ymyrryd mewn unrhyw ffordd? Achos, ar hyn o bryd, o beth dwi'n ei weld, mae grantiau yn cael eu cynnig a'r stwff yma i fentrau iaith i wneud beth bynnag maen nhw'n dewis ei gwneud yn eu cymuned. Ydych chi'n bwriadu ymyrryd mewn unrhyw ffordd i ddweud wrth rhai sefydliadau, 'Dyma lle mae fy mlaenoriaeth i, dyma beth dwi eisiau chi ddefnyddio arian trethdalwyr i'w wneud'?
Okay. Well, I appreciate that, Mrs Webb, but I'm not quite sure that it answers the question that I asked. But, for you, Minister, do you intend to intervene in any way? Because, at the moment, from what I see, grants are provided and organisations such as the mentrau iaith do whatever they choose to do within their own communities. But do you intend to intervene in any way to tell certain bodies, 'This is my priority, and this is how I want you to use taxpayers' money'?
Rwy'n gwneud hynny eisoes. Yn sgil y gwaith a wnaethpwyd yn ystod COVID i weld beth oedd impact ariannol COVID ar rai o'r cyrff hyrwyddo, gwnes i ofyn i'r cyrff hynny ailffocysu ar nid jest darparu gweithgareddau eu hunain, ond y syniad yma o greu capasiti a grymuso cymdeithasol. Ac mae hynny'n sifft mawr yn y ffordd mae nifer o'r cyrff—dim i gyd; mae arfer da eisoes yn y rhan honno o'r sector—. Os edrychwch chi ym Môn, er enghraifft, mae lot o waith cymunedol yn yr economi leol hefyd. Felly, mae hynny'n elfen, ac maen nhw i gyd nawr yn ailffocysu ar hynny. Dyna pam mae'r gronfa gyda Cwmpas yn bwysig, achos mae hynny yn caniatau iddyn nhw i gydweithio ar yr initiatives hynny, a dyna beth yw pwrpas yr adolygiad grant—i weld os ydyw e'n gyson â'r hyn rŷn ni'n ofyn o'r cyrff yma ar gyfer 2050.
I already do that. As a result of the work that was undertaken during COVID to see what the impact of COVID was financially on some of the promoting bodies, I asked those organisations to refocus on not just provide activities themselves, but also this idea of creating capacity and social empowerment. And that is a great shift in the way that a number of bodies—not all of them; there is already good practice in that sector—. If you look on Anglesey, for example, there's a lot of community work ongoing there and in the local economy. So, that is an element, and they're all refocusing on that now. That's why the fund with Cwmpas is important, because that allows them all to work together on those initiatives, and that's what the purpose of the grant review is—to see whether it's consistent with what we're requesting and asking of these organisations for 'Cymraeg 2050'.
Dwi'n gwerthfawrogi hynny, a dwi'n croesawu hynny hefyd. Roedd Tom Giffard wedi gofyn cwestiwn i chi amboutu sut roedd yr holl gysyniad tu ôl i'r darged o filiwn i newid y ffordd mae'r Llywodraeth yn gweithredu. Doedd e ddim yn darged i is-adran y Gymraeg; roedd e'n darged i Lywodraeth Cymru.
I appreciate that, and I welcome that too. Tom Giffard asked a question as to how the whole concept of the target of 1 million Welsh speakers would change the operation of Government. It wasn't a target for the Welsh language division; it's a target for the whole of the Welsh Government.
Rydych chi wedi dweud, wrth ateb Tom, fod cyllideb, fel petai, y Gymraeg yn gyllideb Llywodraeth Cymru mewn ffordd, achos mae yna sawl elfen. Ydych chi wedi—? Neu oes yna unrhyw baseline, os ydych chi'n lecio, ar gyfer gwariant Llywodraeth Cymru ar y Gymraeg ar draws y Llywodraeth?
You said in response to Tom that the budget for the Welsh language cuts across the whole Welsh Government, because there are many elements to it. Have you—? Is there any baseline for Welsh Government expenditure on the Welsh language across Government?
Nac oes. Dyna beth rôn i, mwy neu lai, yn trio ei ddweud yn gynharach—dyw e ddim mor glir â hynny. A dyna’r tensiwn sydd gyda ni, os caf i jest dweud ychydig yn helaethach: beth yw gwariant ar y Gymraeg? Felly, os edrychwch chi ar gyllideb y gwaith dŷn ni wedi ei wneud gydag Arfor—roedd Gweinidog yr Economi gyda chi'n gynharach—ai Arfor yw'r elfen o wariant yn y gyllideb honno ar y Gymraeg, ai Busnes Cymru? Ond, actually, beth ddylem ni fod yn ceisio ei ddangos yw impact yr holl raglenni economaidd ar y Gymraeg. Felly, mae e'n llawer mwy cymhleth na jest dweud, a fyddwn i ddim moyn creu fformiwla sy'n dweud, 'Dŷn ni jest yn mynd i werthuso'—er enghraifft—'Arfor', achos mae hynny'n mynd i greu'r ymddygiad anghywir yn y Llywodraeth, rwy'n credu.
No. That's what I was, more or less, trying to say earlier—it's not as clear as that. And that's the tension that we have, if I could just expand a little on that: what is expenditure on the Welsh language? So, if you look at the budget of the work that we're doing with Arfor—and you had the Minister for Economy with you earlier—is Arfor the element of expenditure on the Welsh language in the budget there, or is it Business Wales? But, actually, what we should be trying to show is the impact of all the economic programmes on the Welsh language. So, it's much more complex than saying, and I wouldn't want to create a formula that says, 'We're only going to evaluate'—for example—'Arfor', because that's going to create the wrong behaviour in the Government, I think.
Cadeirydd, dwi yn meddwl bod hyn yn fater i'w drafod â'r Llywodraeth. Achos dwi'n tueddu i gytuno â'r Gweinidog ei bod hi'n anodd iawn mesur gwariant, ond mae'n bwysig iawn trio mesur impact. A dwi'n croesawu'r penodiadau dŷch chi wedi eu gwneud yn ddiweddar; mae Dr Brooks wedi dechrau'r gwaith, ac eraill, wrth edrych ar gymunedau Cymraeg. Ac felly, dwi yn meddwl y byddai hi'n hwylus pe baem ni'n gallu, trwy efallai broses y gyllideb, drio edrych ar impact polisïau Llywodraeth Cymru ar y Gymraeg. Ac efallai y byddai hi'n hwylus pe bai'r Gweinidog yn gallu ysgrifennu atom ni i ddechrau'r sgwrs honno.
Chair, I do think that this is an issue for discussion with Government. Because I tend to agree with the Minister that it is very difficult to measure expenditure, but it's very important to try and measure impact. And I welcome the appointments that you've made recently; Dr Brooks has started work, as have others, in looking at Welsh-speaking communities. So, I do think that it would be useful, perhaps through the budget process, if we could look at the impact of Welsh Government policies on the Welsh language. And perhaps it might be fitting if the Minister could write to us to begin that conversation.
Yn sicr, hapus iawn i wneud hynny. Fel rôn i'n ei ddweud, dŷn ni ar y llwybr nawr o symud—. Mae gyda ni impact integredig ar gyfer y gyllideb, ond fel ein bod ni'n gallu cael y darlun clir i chi, ac dwi'n moyn, mae angen inni wella'r ddealltwriaeth o impact polisïau unigol, fel ein bod ni'n gallu edrych ar yr aggregate wedyn yn y gyllideb, a dyna'r gwaith sydd ar waith. Felly, byddwn i'n hapus iawn, Gadeirydd, i ysgrifennu am hynny.
Certainly, very happy to do that. As I said, we're on this path now of moving—. We've got an integrated impact for the budget, but so that we can have the clear picture that you want, and I want, we need to improve the understanding of the impact of individual policies, so that we can look at the aggregate then in the budget, and that's the work that's ongoing. So, I'd be very happy, Chair, to write about that.
Diolch yn fawr iawn.
Thank you very much.
Dwi'n hapus â hynny.
I'm happy with that.
Diolch. Gaf i fynd nôl, jest o ran athrawon—y pwynt o ran diffyg athrawon, a'n bod ni'n dal, o ran y cyfrwng Saesneg yn benodol, i fod yn ymwybodol mewn rhai ardaloedd dyw efallai lefel A Cymraeg ddim yn gallu cael ei gynnig mewn rhai ysgolion oherwydd bod y galw'n isel, neu'r diffyg gallu recriwtio staff o fewn ysgolion cyfrwng Saesneg ac yn ddaearyddol yn golgyu nad yw hi felly'n ymarferol hyd yn oed i rywun deithio ymhell? Oes yna gefnogaeth ar gael o ran cefnogi ysgolion cyfrwng Saesneg o ran—? Oherwydd yn aml beth dwi wedi ei gael yn ôl gan ysgolion ydy efallai nad ydy hi'n cost-effective, o ran dim digon o ddisgyblion ac ati. Sut felly ydych chi'n meddwl bod yr ymyriadau rydych chi'n eu gwneud yn mynd i sicrhau, hyd yn oed os ydy o'n ddau ddisgybl mewn ysgol cyfrwng Saesneg a fyddai'n dymuno gwneud lefel A Cymraeg, sut maen nhw felly'n cael y cyfle hwnnw—bod y sefyllfa economaidd, felly, ddim yn rhwystr, os ydym ni o ddifrif ynglŷn â symud ysgolion cyfrwng Saesneg o ran y continwwm a rhoi cyfle i bob disgybl, dim ots pa ysgol y maen nhw ynddi, i allu mynd ymlaen efo'r continwwm iaith?
Thank you. May I go back, just in terms of teachers—the point regarding the shortage of teachers, and that we are still aware, in terms of English medium, specifically, that, in some areas, perhaps A-level Welsh cannot be offered in some schools because demand is low, or problems with staff recruitment in English-medium schools and geographically mean that it's not practicable therefore even for somebody to travel? Is there support available in terms of supporting English-medium schools in terms of—? Because often what I've heard back from schools is that it's not cost-effective, in terms of not enough pupils and so on. How therefore do you think that the interventions that you're making are going to ensure that, even if it's just two pupils in an English-medium school who wish to take A-level Welsh, how do they therefore get that opportunity—that the economic situation isn't a barrier, if we're serious about moving English-medium schools in terms of the continuum and providing an opportunity for every pupil, whatever school they're in, to continue on the language continuum?
Yn y BEL Cymraeg mewn addysg, os edrychwch chi ar yr elfen e-sgol, mae cyllideb yn hynny sy'n cefnogi i hynny ddigwydd ar lefel cydweithio rhwng ysgolion. Felly, y llynedd, fe wnaethom ni fwy neu lai ddyblu'r gyllideb honno—o nghof—a dŷn ni wedi ei gynnal e yn y gyllideb hon eleni. Felly, mae hynny yn caniatáu cydweithio rhwng ysgolion, fel dyw'r niferoedd ddim yn her. Mae e wedi bod yn cael ei beilota yng Ngheredigion, ac mae e nawr ar gael ym mhob rhan o Gymru. Mae heriau gwahanol—rhai'n ddaearyddol, rhai am resymau eraill—mewn gwahanol ysgolion. A bues i yn ddiweddar i weld sut mae e'n gweithio ar lawr gwlad yng Ngheredigion mewn ysgol, ac roedd e'n ddiddorol iawn i weld sut roedd e'n gweithio. Roedd gyda chi athro mewn un ystafell, a dosbarthiadau gwahanol yn gweithio ar y sgrin gyda'i gilydd. Ac fe wnes i drafod y manteision gyda'r athro, ond hefyd gyda'r disgyblion, ac roedd e'n ddiddorol iawn. Mae pethau i'w dysgu yn y math yna o decheg y gallem ni ei ddefnyddio'n llawer ehangach yn ein system addysg ni, a dweud y gwir. Felly, os y cewch chi gyfle i fynd i weld hynny ar waith, fel pwyllgor, mae e'n werth ei weld, yn sicr.
In terms of the Welsh in education BEL, if you look at the e-sgol element, there is a budget line there that allows that to happen in terms of collaboration between schools. So, last year, we more or less doubled that budget—from memory—and we've maintained it in this year's budget. So, that does allow collaboration between schools, so that the numbers aren't necessarily a barrier. It has been piloted in Ceredigion, and it's now available in all parts of Wales. There are different challenges—some geographical, some for other reasons—in different schools. And I saw recently how it's working on the ground in a school in Ceredigion, and it was very interesting to see how it worked. You had a teacher in one room, and different classes working on the screen together. And I discussed the benefits both with the teacher and the pupils, and it was very interesting. There are things for us to learn from that kind of approach that we could use far more broadly in our education system, to tell you the truth. So, if you have an opportunity to go and see that in action, as a committee, it's certainly worthwhile.
Gwych. Diolch yn fawr iawn. Gaf i ofyn a allwch chi ehangu ar gyllid a ddyrannwyd i'r Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yn benodol yn y gyllideb ddrafft, a'r hyn roeddech chi'n cyfeirio ato fo, fod cyllid ar gyfer yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol yn bwriadu cael ei gynyddu i £1 miliwn yn 2023-24? Yn amlwg, mi glywsom ni dystiolaeth gan yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol o ran yr heriau mawr y maen nhw wedi eu hwynebu oherwydd y cynnydd mewn costau, nid yn unig yn sgil yr argyfwng costau byw ac ati, ond hefyd yn dilyn Brexit ac ati, o ran rhai pethau. Allwch chi egluro pa drafodaethau sydd wedi bod o ran cyllid efo'r Eisteddfod Genedlaethol, a sut mae'r arian yma yn bwriadu bod o gefnogaeth o ran dyfodol yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol?
Excellent. Thank you very much. May I ask if you can expand on funding allocated to the National Eisteddfod specifically in the draft budget, and what you referred to, that funding for the National Eisteddfod was intended to increase to £1 million in 2023-24? We obviously heard evidence from the National Eisteddfod regarding the great challenges that they face because of the increase in costs, not only as a result of the cost-of-living crisis, but also following Brexit and so on, in terms of some issues. Could you explain what discussions have been ongoing in terms of funding the National Eisteddfod and how this funding perhaps is going to support the future of the National Eisteddfod?
Wel, mae'n mynd at gynaliadwyedd y sefydliad, onid yw e, fel ein bod ni'n gallu cefnogi'r sefydliad i wneud yr hyn ŷn ni eisiau iddyn nhw ei wneud. Mae'n mynd nôl, a dweud y gwir, i'r drafodaeth am ddyblu defnydd; rwy'n credu bod gan yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol rôl bwysig iawn yn ein helpu ni i gyrraedd y nod honno. Ac mae'n hanfodol bwysig, byddwn i'n dweud, ar gyfer llwyddiant 'Cymraeg 2050' yn ehangach na hynny hefyd.
Mae gennych chi'r ŵyl ei hun, ond mae gennych chi hefyd ystod eang o weithgareddau cymunedol sydd yn digwydd fel halo o amgylch yr ŵyl, pan fo'n teithio o amgylch Cymru. Ac mae hynny'n caniatáu i bobl efallai sydd ddim yn hyderus yn y Gymraeg, sy'n dod i'r Gymraeg am y tro cyntaf, ynghyd â'r rheini efallai sydd yn hyderus ond ddim â'r cyfle bydden nhw eisiau ei weld, mae cyfle wedyn, wrth ein bod ni'n cefnogi'r Eisteddfod Genedlaethol ymhellach, i wneud mwy yn y meysydd hynny. A dyna beth yw bwriad peth o'r gyllideb, eu bod nhw'n staffio er mwyn gallu darparu'r gweithgaredd cymdeithasol Cymraeg hynny tu allan, o amgylch yr Eisteddfod. Bydd hynny'n digwydd yn barod yn eich rhan chi o Gymru, yn Rhondda Cynon Taf, a wedyn bydd e'n dechau maes o law yn Wrecsam ar gyfer y flwyddyn ar ôl hynny, ac mae hynny'n creu cyfleoedd i ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg, ac mae hynny mor bwysig.
Well, it goes to the sustainability of the organisation, so that we can support them in doing what we want them to do. And it goes back, to be honest, to the discussion on increasing usage; I think the National Eisteddfod has a very important role in helping us to meet that target. And it's crucially important, I would say, for the success of 'Cymraeg 2050' more broadly too.
You have the festival itself, of course, but you also have a broad range of community activities that happen like a halo around the festival, as it travels around Wales. That enables people who perhaps aren't confident in using the Welsh language, or are coming to the Welsh language for the very first time, as well as those who perhaps are confident but don't have the opportunity, so there is an opportunity there, as we support the National Eisteddfod more, to do more in those areas. And that's the focus of some of the budget, that they are staffed in order to provide that Welsh-medium social activity outwith the Eisteddfod. That will be happening already in your part of Wales, in Rhondda Cynon Taf, and then it will begin in Wrexham soon for the following year, and that creates opportunities to use the Welsh language, and that's so very important.
Felly, dim ond o ran yr elfen yma o'r gyllideb felly, yn amlwg mae yna gyfeiriad o ran sicrhau staffio yr Eisteddfod ac ati. Rydyn ni'n gwybod eu bod nhw wedi gorfod colli rhai staff oherwydd yr heriau efo COVID ac ati. Ydych chi'n gweld, o ran y pwyslais rydych chi'n ei roi o ran defnydd, fod buddsoddi yn yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol, felly, yn rhan o'r gefnogaeth honno, yn rhywbeth rydych chi'n ceisio ei flaenoriaethu?
So, just in terms of this part of the budget, therefore, clearly there is reference to ensuring the staffing of the Eisteddfod and so on. We know that they have had to lose some members of staff because of the COVID challenges. Do you see, in terms of the emphasis that you place on use, that investing in the National Eisteddfod, therefore, is part of that support and something that you are trying to prioritise?
Diolch yn fawr iawn; ateb cryno a chlir iawn. Gawn ni symud ymlaen, os gwelwch yn dda, at Carolyn Thomas?
Thank you very much; a clear and concise answer. So, can we move on, therefore, to Carolyn Thomas?
Just regarding the Welsh Language Commissioner's budget, do you think that—[Inaudible.] And I saw that there is—. Sorry. Shall I repeat that, because it wasn't on the mike? Okay. So, it's just regarding the Welsh Language Commissioner's budget, and you have a new Welsh commissioner. Do you believe that the budget is enough for them to be able to carry out their duty? I see that there is an uplift, but I believe that's to cover wage increases in that department, to keep them in line with pay awards.
Ie, mae cynnydd o 4 y cant wedi bod, sydd yn gyson â'r cynnydd i'r comisiynwyr eraill, ac fel ŷch chi'n dweud, pwrpas hynny yw sicrhau cyflogau staff. Mae hefyd dyraniad o ran cyfalaf, wrth gwrs, ar gyfer technoleg gwybodaeth yn y rhan fwyaf. Rwyf yn hyderus bod y gyllideb yn caniatáu’r comisiynydd i wneud ei gwaith. Ges i gyfle yr wythnos hon i gwrdd â'r comisiynydd newydd, sydd wedi bod yn ei rôl ers wythnos. Roedd y ddau ohonon ni'n keen i gael cyfarfod cynnar. Roedd e'n gyfarfod buddiol iawn a phositif iawn. Mae'r drafodaeth y bore yma wedi bod lot ynghylch defnydd a chynyddu defnydd y Gymraeg, a'r hyn ddywedwn i o'r sgwrs a gawsom ni gydag Efa Gruffudd Jones oedd bod pwyslais y comisiynydd newydd hefyd yn glir iawn ar gynyddu defnydd. Felly, rwy'n credu bod hynny i'w groesawu, felly rwy'n edrych ymlaen at gydweithio â hi yn y swydd newydd.
Yes, there is an increase of 4 per cent, which is in line with the increases to other commissioners, and as you said, the purpose of that is to secure staff salaries. There's also a capital allocation for information technology in the most part. I am confident that the budget will allow the commissioner to do her work. I had an opportunity to meet the new commissioner, who's been in her role for just a week. Both of us were keen to have an early meeting, and it was very beneficial and very positive indeed. This morning's discussion has focused a lot on use and increasing the use of the Welsh language, and what I would say, from the conversation we had with Efa Gruffudd Jones, is that the emphasis of the new commissioner is also very clearly on increasing language use. I think that's to be welcomed, so I look forward to working with her in her new role.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Oes yna unrhyw gwestiynau? Ie.
Thank you very much. Are there any other questions? Yes.
Allaf i ofyn am y comisiynydd? Er ei bod hi'n newydd yn y rôl—a dwi'n edrych ymlaen at weld beth mae'n gallu gwneud yn y rôl—fe fydd ganddi hi flaenoriaethau gwahanol i'r un cyn hynny, felly sut ydych chi'n gwybod bod y budget ŷch chi wedi ei rhoi iddi yn ddigon i wneud y blaenoriaethau fydd efallai yn wahanol i'r un cyn hynny?
Could I ask about the commissioner? Even though she's new to the role—and I'm looking forward to seeing what she will do in the role—she will have different priorities to the previous commissioner, so how do you know that the budget that you have allocated is sufficient to undertake the priorities that may be different to those of the previous commissioner?
Wel, fel pob corff, mae'n rhaid ichi weithio ar eich blaenoriaethau o fewn y gyllideb sydd gennych chi.
Well, like all organisations, you have to work on your priorities within the budget available.
Ond cwestiwn Carolyn oedd: ydy e'n ddigon iddi hi wneud ei gwaith hi?
But Carolyn's question was: is it sufficient for her to do her work?
Bydd e'n ddigon; dwi'n sicr o hynny.
It will be sufficient; I can assure you of that.
Diolch. Oedd gennych chi gwestiwn atodol?
Thank you. Did you have a supplementary question?
Mae gen i gwestiwn, ond mae e amboutu fy hobby-horse yn fwy nag unrhyw beth arall. Bob tro dwi'n gweld y Gweinidog, mae'n rhywbeth dwi eisiau gofyn, so gyda'ch indulgence chi. Ers yr etholiad diwethaf, dŷn ni wedi clywed lot llai am waith digidol y Llywodraeth yma na beth wnaethom ni yn y Senedd ddiwethaf, ac un o'r pethau dwi'n gwybod bod Mrs Webb wedi bod yn gweithio arno fe yw sut dŷn ni'n sicrhau bod Alexa, a phwy bynnag arall, yn siarad Cymraeg. A dwi'n tueddu meddwl mai un o'r ffyrdd dŷn ni'n hybu defnydd o'r Gymraeg yw i sicrhau bod y dechnoleg newydd i fi—dyw e ddim yn newydd i fy mhlant, ond newydd i fi—yn deall ac yn defnyddio’r Gymraeg. Ac un o'r blaenoriaethau dwi am i chi ganolbwyntio arnynt yn ystod y blynyddoedd nesaf yw sicrhau bod y gwaith yma i sicrhau bod technoleg yn defnyddio’r Gymraeg yn parhau. Ydy hynny'n flaenoriaeth i chi, ac oes gennych chi unrhyw ran o'ch cyllideb sydd wedi ei neilltuo ar gyfer y gwaith yma?
I do have a question, but it's about my hobby-horse more than anything else. Every time I see the Minister, I do want to ask this question, so with your indulgence. Since the last election, we've heard a lot less about the Government's work in digital than we did in the last Senedd, and one of the things that I know Mrs Webb has been working on is how do we ensure that Alexa, and whoever else is available, can communicate through the medium of Welsh. And I think one of the ways that we promote the use of the Welsh language is through ensuring that what is new technology for me—it's not for my children, but it's certainly new for me—can understand and use the Welsh language. And one of the priorities that I would like you to focus on during the next years is to ensure that this work on technology using the Welsh language does continue. Is that a priority of yours, and do you have any part of your budget that is allocated for this work?
Oes. Nid jest cael blaenoriaeth, rŷn ni wedi cael cynnydd penodol yn ddiweddar yn y maes hwn. Felly, os edrychwch chi ar beth rŷn ni wedi'i wneud gyda Microsoft, ni yw’r Llywodraeth gyntaf yn y byd i gydweithio â nhw i greu Teams sy'n ddwyieithog. Felly, am y tro cyntaf erioed, mae hynny ar gael nawr fel mae e yn Zoom beth bynnag. Felly, partneriaeth rhwng Llywodraeth Cymru a Microsoft sydd wedi creu hynny, ac mae hynny ar gael i bob Llywodraeth a phob corff yn y byd, felly mae hynny'n elfen bwysig, dwi'n credu, o arloesi, ac mae'n caniatáu i gyrff cyhoeddus sy'n aml yn defnyddio Teams, nid Zoom, am resymau penodol—mae hynny'n un enghraifft.
Roeddwn i yn yr Eisteddfod yr haf diwethaf yn cael profi Aberwla, sef platfform virtual reality ar gyfer dysgu Cymraeg yn y cyd-destun trochi, fel eich bod chi’n byw mewn pentref ac yn dysgu’r Gymraeg. Chi’n mynd i'r archfarchnad, chi’n cerdded i lawr y stryd. Mae e’n grêt. Yng Ngwynedd mae e wedi cael ei greu a nawr mae e ar gael ymhob rhan o Gymru. Rŷn ni'n ariannu hynny i gael ei rannu dros Gymru. Mae hynny'n un o'r pethau rŷn ni wedi bod yn ariannu a datblygu. Felly, mae lot o'r pethau yna’n digwydd. Mae'r arian rŷn ni'n ei ddyrannu i M-SParc, er enghraifft, yn Ynys Môn—mae lot o arloesi digidol yn fanna. Roeddwn i gyda nhw llynedd ar ddechrau’r flwyddyn yn sôn am y gwaith maen nhw'n ei wneud fel incubator, os hoffwch chi, i dechnoleg y Gymraeg. Mae lot o stwff diddorol yn digwydd yn fanna hefyd.
Yes. Not just a priority, but we have had a specific development in this area recently. If you look at what we're doing with Microsoft, we're the first Government in the world to work with them to create Teams that's bilingual. So, for the first time ever, that is available now, as it is in Zoom anyway. So, that's a partnership between Welsh Government and Microsoft, and that's how that's been created, and it's available to every Government and organisation in the world, and I think that's important, in terms of innovation, and it allows public bodies that quite often use Teams, not Zoom, for specific reasons—that's one example.
I was in the Eisteddfod last summer and used Aberwla, a virtual reality platform for learning Welsh in the immersion context, so that you live in a village and learn Welsh by going to the supermarket and walking down the road. It's really great. It was created in Gwynedd and now it's available in all parts of Wales. We're funding that to be shared right across Wales. That's one of the things that we've been developing and funding. So, many of those things are happening. We're funding M-SParc, for example, in Anglesey—there's a lot of digital innovation there. I was with them last year, at the start of the year, looking at the work that they're doing as an incubator, if you like, with regard to Welsh-language technology. Lots of interesting things are happening there too.
Dwi'n falch iawn clywed hynny, ond dyw hwn ddim yn memory test i'r Gweinidog. [Chwerthin.] Wel, dŷch wedi pasio fe, anyway. Mi fuasai fe’n hwylus petai chi’n gallu ysgrifennu atom ni yn rhestru hynny a'r initiatives dŷch chi yn hyrwyddo, achos dwi'n meddwl bod hyn yn hanfodol i'r dyfodol, so dwi'n croesawu hynny.
I'm very pleased to hear that, but this isn't a memory test for the Minister. [Laughter.] Well, you've passed that test, anyway. It would be great if you could write to us and list those activities and those initiatives that you are promoting, because I think this is essential for the future, so I welcome that.
Hapus i wneud.
Happy to do so.
Os caf i, efallai, ehangu ar hynny, jest o ran yr elfen hyrwyddo, dod ar draws nifer o'r pethau rydych chi newydd gyfeirio atyn nhw wnes i yn yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol eleni, gan dreulio lot fawr o amser efo mab 9 oed yn y pentref gwyddoniaeth a thechnoleg. Ydych chi’n credu, o ran sicrhau bod y rhai sydd yn mynd i gael y budd mwyaf, fod yna ddigon o gyllid o ran yr elfen o ran hyrwyddo’r hyn sydd ar gael fel bod pobl yn gallu cael mynediad? Ydy hynny'n rhywbeth o ran y Llywodraeth ei hun, awdurdodau lleol—? Dim ond o ran meddwl sut ydyn ni'n hyrwyddo, oherwydd rydym ni hefyd yn gweld, o ran hyrwyddo addysg Gymraeg ac ati, fod hynny'n gallu efallai amrywio o ran negeseuon o sir i sir a'r pwyslais o ran trochi. Roedd yna bethau ffantastig ar y newyddion y bore yma efo esiamplau efo trochi hwyr ac ati, ond mi oeddwn i'n gwrando ar Radio Cymru ac mae ganddi gynulleidfa graidd. Efallai nid dyna’r gynulleidfa sydd angen clywed y negeseuon yna weithiau. Ydych chi’n credu, dim ond o ran yr elfen hyrwyddo rŵan, o'r hyn sydd ar gael, o ran arloesedd yn sicr, ein bod ni'n gallu gwneud hynny'n ddigonol?
If I could just expand on that, just in terms of the promotional element. I came across many of the things that you've just referred to in the National Eisteddfod this year, as I spent a great deal of time with my 9-year-old son in the science and technology village. Do you think, in terms of ensuring that those who will get the greatest benefit from this, that there is sufficient funding in terms of promoting what's available so that people can access it? Is that something for the Government, local authorities—? I'm just thinking how we promote this, because we also see, in terms of promoting Welsh-medium education, that that can vary from county to county, in terms of the emphasis and the emphasis on immersion. There were some great examples of late immersion on the news this morning, but I was listening to Radio Cymru, which has a core audience. Perhaps that's not the audience that needs to hear those messages. So, do you think, just in terms of the promotional element in terms of what's available, and innovation particularly, that we are doing that sufficiently?
Dwi'n meddwl bod gwahaniaeth rhwng hyrwyddo a marchnata, byddwn i'n ei ddweud. So, mae hyrwyddo yn rhywbeth hollol integredig, onid yw e? Mae lot o'r stwff rŷn ni wedi bod yn ei drafod heddiw yn creu ecosystem o hyrwyddo ei gilydd. Felly, rwy'n credu bod hyrwyddo’n rhywbeth sydd yn digwydd ar draws y gyllideb hon. Os edrychwch chi ar drochi, mae'n dibynnu lle ŷch chi yng Nghymru, onid yw e? Mae’ch profiad chi o drochi yn mynd i amrywio oherwydd mae rhannau o Gymru ar wahanol lefydd ar y llwybr. Felly, fyddech chi ddim efallai yn disgwyl, ble ŷn ni heddiw, fod pob cynnig yn cael ei hyrwyddo yn yr un ffordd oherwydd nad yw’r cynnig mor aeddfed ym mhob rhan o Gymru. Felly, rwy'n credu bod e ychydig yn wahanol. Er enghraifft, un o'r pethau dwi wedi bod yn glir gyda chynghorau lleol yn ei gylch, pan dwi'n cael y trafodaethau un-wrth-un gyda'r arweinwyr, yw pa mor bwysig yw cael strategaeth glir i hyrwyddo addysg Gymraeg, ac mae rhai wedi bod yn fwy llwyddiannus, wrth gwrs, nag eraill. Ond rwy'n credu bod y diwylliant yna wedi newid dros y blynyddoedd diweddaf—bod mwy o ddealltwriaeth beth yw’r nod. Hynny yw, nid jest ateb y galw, ond mynd ati i esbonio manteision a thyfu’r galw ei hun, os hoffwch chi. Felly, rwy'n credu bod y neges honno wedi cael ei chlywed. Ond, wrth gwrs, mae'n rhaid gweld hynny'n digwydd.
I think there's a difference between marketing and promotion, I would say. Promotion is an integrated thing, isn't it? A lot of the stuff we've been discussing today creates an ecosystem of various elements promoting each other. So, I think promotion is something that happens across this budget. If you look at immersion, it does depend on where you are in Wales, doesn't it? Your experience of immersion is going to vary because different parts of Wales are on different parts of that path. So, you wouldn't expect, where we are today, for every offer to be promoted in the same way because the offer might not be as mature in every part of Wales. So, I think it is slightly different. For example, one of the things that I have been clear about with local authorities, when I'm having the one-to-one discussions with leaders, is how important it is to have a clear strategy to promote Welsh-medium education, and some have been more successful, of course, than others. But I think that that culture has changed over the last few years—there's more understanding of what the aim is. That is, not just meeting demand, but explaining the advantages and growing that demand, if you like. So, I think that message has been heard. But, of course, we need to see that happening.
Diolch, Weinidog. Gaf i symud ymlaen rŵan at Hefin David?
Thank you, Minister. If could move on to Hefin David.
Diolch, Cadeirydd. Yn dilyn y cyhoeddiad cychwynnol o £2.2 miliwn ar gyfer y ddarpariaeth iaith Gymraeg trochi hwyr, fe wnaeth Llywodraeth Cymru ymrwymo i gyllid ychwanegol o £6.6 miliwn dros dair blynedd. Yn ei bapur tystiolaeth, mae'r Gweinidog yn nodi,
Thank you, Chair. Following the initial announcement of £2.2 million for late immersion, the Welsh Government committed to additional funding of £6.6 million over three years. In the evidence paper, the Minister notes,
'This current funding round is enabling local authorities to keep in post, or appoint from new, over 60 specialised late immersion teachers/classroom assistants into newly established immersion units or centres.'
Sut mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn sicrhau bod y canlyniadau yn dod yn sgil cyllid penodol?
How will the Welsh Government ensure that there is delivery against that particular funding?
Diolch am hynny. Mae'n amrywio o le i le beth yw'r defnydd o'r arian hwnnw. Felly, pan wnaethon ni ddyrannu'r gyllideb yn wreiddiol, gwnaeth pob awdurdod lleol yng Nghymru gynnig am, a derbyn, rhan o'r gronfa honno, sydd, yn ei hunan, yn beth pwysig iawn, rwy'n credu. Ond fel roeddwn i jest yn sôn in passing nawr gyda'r Cadeirydd, mae awdurdodau mewn mannau gwahanol ar y llwybr, felly mae'r hyn rŷn ni'n ei ddisgwyl iddyn nhw ei wneud gyda'r gyllideb honno yn wahanol.
Felly, yn fras, os ŷch chi yn y gogledd-orllewin, mae gennych chi ddarpariaeth sydd wedi cael ei sefydlu ers blynyddoedd lawer, felly cynnal hynny ac ehangu hynny yw'r defnydd. Os edrychwch chi ar y de-ddwyrain, jest yn gyffredinol, mae rhai o'r cynghorau llawer cynharach ar eu llwybr tuag at ddarparu trochi. Felly, maen nhw efallai'n datblygu cynlluniau o'r cychwyn cyntaf, yn recriwtio am y tro cyntaf.
Ond, ar y cyfan, costau recriwtio yw'r rhain, naill ai athrawon trochi, cynorthwywyr neu gydlynwyr. Rŷn ni'n credu bod rhyw 60 o swyddi yn dod yn sgil hyn, naill ai cadw swyddi sydd eisoes yno, neu recriwtio newydd. Un o'r pethau sydd yn bwysig i ni yn y maes yma—ac mae'n gyfle pwysig i ni, dwi'n credu, hefyd—yw bod y sgiliau sy'n cael eu defnyddio mewn canolfannau trochi yn rhai arbenigol iawn. Mae'r hyn rŷn ni'n gweld yn digwydd yn effeithiol iawn. Byddwn i'n dweud os ydych chi wedi gweld e gyda'ch llygaid eich hunain, mae'n agos i fod yn wyrthiol, mor gyflym mae'r cynnydd yn digwydd i'r plant sydd yn yr unedau yna.
Ond, y cyfle i ni yw ein bod ni'n gallu prif ffrydio drwy'r system y sgiliau arbenigol sy'n cael eu defnyddio yn y canolfannau trochi. Mae gennym ni rwydwaith hefyd rŷn ni wedi ei sefydlu o ganolfannau sydd yn gallu creu a rhannu arfer da drwy'r system, fel bod llwybr yr awdurdodau lleol sydd efallai â ffordd bellach i fynd yn cyflymu.
Thanks for that. It varies from area to area in terms of the use of that funding. So, when we allocated the budget originally, every local authority in Wales bid for, and received, part of that fund, which, in itself, is very important, I think. But, as I just mentioned in passing to the Chair now, local authorities are on different parts of the path, so what we expect them to do with that budget is different.
So, generally, if you're in the north-west, you have provision that has been established for a number of years, so maintaining that and expanding that is the use. If you look at the south-east, just in general, some councils are much earlier on that journey in terms of their immersion programmes. So, they may be developing programmes from the very beginning and recruiting for the first time.
But, on the whole, these are recruitment costs, whether they're teachers, co-ordinators or teaching assistants. We think there will be about 60 posts as a result of this, either by keeping those in place or new recruitment. One of the things that's important to us in this area—and it's an important opportunity for us as well, I think—is that the skills that are used in immersion centres are very specialised skills. What we see happening is very effective. I would say that if you see it with your own eyes, it's quite miraculous, really, how quickly progress happens with the children in those centres.
But, the opportunity for us is that we're able to mainstream through the whole system those specialist skills that are being used in the immersion centres. We have a network also that's been established of centres that can create and share good practice through the system, so that the local authorities that have further to go can move along the pathway at a quicker pace.
Diolch yn fawr iawn o ran hynny. Hefin David, os gennych chi gwestiynau pellach?
Thank you very much. Hefin David, do you have any further questions?
Diolch. Hefyd, cyllid grant penodol: a all y Gweinidog egluro'r camau a gymerwyd ers ymateb i'r argymhellion yn dilyn yr arolwg ar effaith COVID-19 ar grwpiau cymunedol, yn benodol ynghylch sefydlu'r cynllun grantiau bach neu'r gronfa her?
Thank you. I'd also like to look at specific grant funding. Could the Minister explain the steps taken since responding to recommendations following the survey on the effects of COVID-19 on community groups, specifically around the establishment of the small grants scheme or the challenge fund?
Gallaf. Mae amryw bethau wedi digwydd ers inni gael yr adroddiad hwnnw. Efallai'r peth mwyaf o ran value—o ran gwerth—yw'r gronfa o £400,000 rŷn ni wedi'i sefydlu gyda Cwmpas er mwyn creu mentrau cymdeithasol cydweithredol. Cronfa her yw honno, fel bod pobl yn gallu cael rhan ohoni hi, fel roeddwn i'n sôn yn gynharach gydag Alun Davies. Mae honno'n un gronfa.
Rŷn ni wedi creu cronfeydd eraill gydag M-SParc—roeddwn i'n sôn amdanyn nhw yn gynharach—i edrych ar sut y gallwn ni ddefnyddio technoleg i ddenu pobl at y Gymraeg. Mae gennym ni ddwy initiative hyd yn hyn yn y maes hwnnw hefyd. A hefyd—efallai mewn ffyrdd mwy cyfarwydd—cronfa gyda'r WCVA i ddatblygu mwy o wirfoddoli yn y Gymraeg, a hefyd y gefnogaeth dwi wedi sôn amdani eisoes i'r Urdd a'r Eisteddfod Genedlaethol. A hefyd, gyda llaw, y gymdeithas eisteddfodau lleol, rŷn ni wedi'u cefnogi nhw ar gyfer eu gweithgareddau nhw hefyd. Maen nhw wedi bod dan bwysau aruthrol, am resymau amlwg, yn ystod COVID.
I can. A number of things have happened since we had that report. Perhaps the biggest thing in terms of value is the £400,000 fund that we've established with Cwmpas to create co-operative social enterprises. That's a challenge fund, so that people can have part of that, as I mentioned earlier with Alun Davies. That is one fund.
We have created other funds with M-SParc—I mentioned them earlier—to look at how we can use technology to attract people to the Welsh language. We have two initiatives so far in that area. And, also—in more familiar means—a fund with the Wales Council for Voluntary Action to develop more volunteering through the medium of Welsh, and also the support that I've already mentioned to the Urdd and the National Eisteddfod. And also, of course, the local eisteddfod society, we've also supported their activities. They've been under great pressure, for obvious reasons, during COVID.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Hefin, oes yna gwestiynau pellach?
Thank you very much. Hefin, any further questions?
Oes. Beth am y cynllun sabathol?
Yes. What about the sabbatical scheme?
Was there consideration of increasing the funding for that?
Mae'r cynllun sabathol yn un o'r rhaglenni sydd gyda ni o ran cynyddu sgiliau athrawon yn y sector Saesneg. Bues i yng Nghaerdydd yn ddiweddar yn cwrdd gyda cohort a oedd wedi bod trwy'r cwrs, ac mae'n ffantastig nid jest clywed eu hyfedredd nhw yn y Gymraeg, ond hefyd y dulliau roedden nhw'n dysgu o sut i fynd ati i ddysgu'r Gymraeg. Ar y cyfan, athrawon yn y sector gynradd mewn ysgolion Saesneg sydd yn manteisio fwyaf ar hyn.
Rŷn ni wedi cynnal y gyllideb honno, ond hefyd wedi cynyddu'r ddarpariaeth ehangach, felly y gwersi am ddim i athrawon, y gwersi i bobl oed 18 i 25. Rydyn ni'n cydweithio gyda'r consortia ar hyn o bryd i edrych ar sut mae'r holl bethau yna ar y cyd yn gallu creu dilyniant gwell drwy'r system. Ar hyn o bryd, mae rhyw 200 o athrawon y flwyddyn yn gallu manteisio ar y cynllun sabathol. Mae hynny'n costio rhyw £3.6 miliwn i ni. Y costau, ar y cyfan, yw'r costau cyflenwi, y backfill costs, os hoffwch chi. Felly, rhaid edrych ar yr ystod ehangach, rwy'n credu, o ffyrdd o gefnogi athrawon i loywi iaith neu wella safonau ieithyddol.
The sabbatical scheme is one of the programmes that we have in terms of increasing the skills of teachers in the English sector. I was in Cardiff recently meeting a cohort that had been on the course, and it's fantastic not only hearing their fluency in the language, but also the methods of learning and how they learnt the language. On the whole, it's teachers in the primary sector and in the English sector that are taking advantage of this.
We've maintained that budget, but we've also increased the wider provision, so the free lessons for teachers, the lessons for 18 to 25-year-olds. We're working with the consortia currently to look at how all these things jointly can create a better continuum through the system. At the moment, there are about 200 teachers a year that can take advantage of the sabbatical scheme. That costs about £3.6 million for us. The costs, on the whole, are the backfill costs, if you like. So, we need to look at the wider range, I think, of ways of supporting teachers to improve their Welsh language skills.