|David J. Rowlands AM||Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor|
|Janet Finch-Saunders AM|
|Mike Hedges AM|
|Neil McEvoy AM|
|Rhun ap Iorwerth AM|
|Dr Elin Jones||Cadeirydd, Cwricwlwm Cymreig|
|Chair, Cwricwlwm Cymreig|
|Elfed Wyn Jones||Deisebydd|
|Kath Thomas||Dirprwy Glerc|
|Kayleigh Imperato||Dirprwy Glerc|
|Lisa Salkeld||Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol|
|1. Cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datganiadau o fuddiant||1. Introduction, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest|
|2. Deisebau newydd||2. New petitions|
|3. Y wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am ddeisebau blaenorol||3. Updates to previous petitions|
|4. Sesiwn dystiolaeth – P-05-799 Newid y Cwricwlwm Cenedlaethol a dysgu hanes Cymru, a hynny o bersbectif Cymreig, yn ein Hysgolion Cynradd, Uwchradd a’r Chweched Dosbarth||4. Evidence session - P-05-799 Change the National Curriculum and teach Welsh history, from a Welsh perspective, in our Primary, Secondary and Sixth form Schools|
|5. Cynnig o dan Reol Sefydlog 17.42 i benderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o’r cyfarfod am weddill busnes heddiw||5. Motion under Standing Order 17.42 to resolve to exclude the public from the meeting for the remainder of today's business|
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.
Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 09:05.
The meeting began at 09:05.
Welcome, everybody, to this meeting of the Petitions Committee. There are no apologies at this moment. We're all present, and so we'll move on immediately to the new petitions.
The first new petition is 'We call for the Welsh Government to encourage trusts to implement the NICE guidelines for Borderline Personality Disorder or justify why they do not do so'. The petition was submitted by Keir Harding and collected 812 signatures. You will have had notes on this. An initial response to the petition was received from the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Services on 4 May. Do we have any comments?
I have a huge amount of sympathy with this, obviously. It is concerning to read about the number of health boards that the petitioner says don't follow the guidelines. It might be good to find out a bit more than that and perhaps find out from Welsh Government what their thoughts are on that.
The figures show that it's only 50 per cent of the Welsh trusts who have these services, compared to 84 per cent of the trusts in England.
I suggest we go back to the Welsh Government in the first instance, but perhaps we may also want to write to the trusts, depending on the answer we get from the Welsh Government, after that to ask the trusts why they don't follow it.
Yes. It's something that's got—. I've had one or two people in.
The committee should write back to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Services to ask for a response.
The second new petition is 'Ban the USE of LARSEN TRAPS (Multi Corvid Traps)'. This was submitted by Action Against Wildlife Persecution and collected 1,943 signatures.
Chair, there's quite a lot of indiscriminate use of these things now, and I think it's quite appropriate to put questions to the Cabinet Secretary on this.
They make the point in the petition that these traps have to be used under the terms of a general license issued by Natural Resources Wales. The background is that an initial response to the petition was received from the Minister for the Environment on 24 April.
I'll put my hands up and say I knew nothing about Larsen traps. It sounds quite horrific as it's portrayed here. I'd be interested in finding out more. I'd like to know what the RSPCA, for example, think of Larsen traps. Is there a legitimate and safe use for them as well? I guess your Country Land and Business Association or Countryside Alliance-type people could put the other side of it, or we could ask Welsh Government what they think as well. So, there's certainly a bit of evidence-gathering that can be done.
Fine, yes. Okay. And what about the bird protection societies, as well as the RSPCA? Do you think we ought to write to those as well?
Yes, I think so, to get a balanced view, absolutely. Are you happy with that?
We could write to some organisations, and you've named a few: RSPCA, RSPB, Countryside Alliance maybe, the gamekeepers association. We'll come up with a list and get some further evidence.
Okay, fine. Are you happy with that? Okay.
The third new petition is 'All New Builds In Wales to Have Solar Panels'. The petition was submitted by Harriet King, having collected 72 signatures. We had an initial response to the petition, received from the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Planning and Rural Affairs on 24 April.
Great petition. On a personal level, I sympathise greatly. I've got a member's legislative proposal being discussed by the Assembly tomorrow to make it mandatory to use the planning system to install vehicle charging points. This is exactly the same kind of thing. I'd like to see how far we can push this. The Government will say that it's already doing what it can and reviewing part L of the building regulations. What we can do, I suppose, is we could—
Any other comments on that? The possible actions are that the committee could agree to await the views of the petitioner on the response from the Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs before considering any further action on the petition.
I agree with that, but can we find out when part L is going to be—. It's under review; when are we likely to have the result of the review? If it is going to happen in the next couple of months, then I'm quite happy to hold the petition here. If it's some time in the future, with no known date, I think we might want to address the problem.
We move on now to updates to previous petitions.
The first of these is 'TATA Steel Port Talbot Power Plant'. This was submitted by Peter Bamsey and was first considered by the committee in April 2016, having collected 531 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 13 March, and agreed to write to the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport to ask for an update on discussions with Tata Steel. A response was received from the Cabinet Secretary on 18 April. I think the response was that the Welsh Government were giving £8 million towards an investment by Tata in improvements to the power plant, which is slightly different to what the petitioner is asking for. He's asking for a brand new power plant to be put in. So, do you have any comments with regard to that?
I think this petition has gone as far as it's going to. The Welsh Government are talking to Tata. They are supporting steel. They are supporting the power station. I think we can close the petition. If things break down, they can come back to us with another petition, which I'm sure they will. But at this stage, there's nothing further we can do because we've achieved what we always wanted to achieve; we've got the two parties talking and in agreement of how they want to take it forward.
Okay. So, in light of the ongoing discussions between the Welsh Government and Tata Steel, the funding announced for improvements to the power plant, and the likelihood that there is little further concrete action the Petitions Committee can take, the committee could agree to close the petition at this point.
In effect, we ask the petitioners are they happy for us to close it and say that we think that there's not much more that can be squeezed out of this one, but our doors are always open if they want to put forward another one.
Yes. So, we're happy to close this petition at this point? Fine.
The next petition is 'Road Safety Improvements Along the A487 Trunk Road between Cardigan and Aberystwyth, to Include Passing Places'. This petition was submitted by Maldwyn Lewis and was first considered by the committee in September 2016 having collected 849 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 13 March and agreed to write to the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport. A response from the Cabinet Secretary was received on 19 April. Do we have any comments with regard to this? We know what the Cabinet Secretary has said.
I think we're getting to the end of this one now, because it does say that scheme options will become clear later this year. So, they are now talking aren't they?
Yes, they are. We've already heard that a lot of the schemes are being put forward and promulgated by the Welsh Government. So, the committee could keep a watching brief on the issue, and seek an update from the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport about the options identified by the WelTAG stage 1 process later in the year, or the committee could consider closing the petition.
I would propose we close this. I know that the petitioner has put for us,
'put into action a planned system of works in order to improve the road safety'.
We haven't got the remit to do that, as such.
No. The other side to this is that we do have a number of other petitions regarding road safety, et cetera, which we are proposing that we'll close.
I mean, each one on its merit. And on this one, there are things moving forward now, so I think our work is done.
I think with all these road improvement, road safety or speed limit petitions, our role has been carried out by giving them an opportunity to highlight their local issue on a national stage. We've done that, and there's not much more we can do, really.
They've highlighted their local issue and the Welsh Government are looking at dealing with the pinch points. I declare an interest: I drive along that road at least half a dozen times a year, to get up to Bangor. And it is important, and annoying, some of the hold-ups there, but, yes, we've gone as far as we can go. What will we do next? What else could we get to happen? The Government are looking at dealing with the pinch points; I see no point, no benefit, in us taking this forward, because I don't see what we can achieve.
Absolutely. And the Welsh Government is talking about looking at 600 schemes. We've actually asked if they could identify those schemes coming forward in the first instance. So, I don't think we can go much further. So, we're agreed that we close this particular petition? Fine.
The next petition is 'Free Train Transport for school pupils with Arriva Trains Wales'. The petition was submitted by Elin Tuckwood, and was first considered by the committee in November 2016, having collected 937 signatures on an alternative e-petition website. Now, we've looked at this matter on several occasions, and it appears that Arriva trains are adamant that they've put in safety concerns with regard to the particular station under review. And we've had responses from the Government with regard to the free transport for the children. So, the committee could consider closing the petition at this point, because the safety arrangements were identified through an assessment of the risk to pupils on the platform at Treorchy station, and whether or not to offer free travel is a commercial decision for the operator of the rail franchise, which we've heard about in writing to them. In doing so, the committee could thank the petitioner for bringing the petition forward, and her conscientious highlighting of this issue.
I've got one other thing I'd like to add. We know Arriva trains are not going to have this franchise for much longer. Can we write to the Welsh Government and ask them if they'll take up these issues with the new franchise holder?
Would you like to do that and close the petition at the same time, or wait for the response from the Welsh Government?
Close the petition at the same time. Because there's nothing further that we can do, but to ask the Welsh Government to take that up, and they'll say 'yes' or 'no', but we can't make them do it. But that's the only thing we can do to keep it going forward.
The following three petitions we are grouping together because they're all with regard to traffic measures. The first of those is 'Penegoes Speed Limit Petition'. The petition was submitted by Isabel Bottoms, Peter Bottoms and Sarah Holgate, and was first considered by the committee in December 2016, having collected 298 signatures. The second petition was 'Trunk Road Through Tre-Taliesin: Urgent Need for Effective Speed-Calming Measures'. This was submitted by Antony Foulkes, and was first considered by the committee in April 2017, having collected 52 signatures. The next petition was 'Petition to extend the 40mph speed limit in Blaenporth'. This petition was submitted by Rosemarie Chaffers-Jones, and was first considered by the committee in January 2018, having collected 75 signatures. The committee last considered the three petitions on 13 March, and we've heard from the Cabinet Secretary that they are developing a programme for speed limit review. The Cabinet Secretary also said that, due to the scale of the review, there are no specific dates set for any one location to be looked at. So, the possible action, in view of the information provided by the Cabinet Secretary and the commitment to take local comments on board during the speed limit review process, is that the committee could close the petitions at this point.
I would like to see any petitions that come in, that we can support those—for reducing speed, particularly in villages. I know that, in my own constituency, where we've pushed for the authority to do it, they've done it because there are more and more people wanting to walk, and more and more people wanting to get out cycling. If we're going to get the active travel Act in motion and really working well, and if we're going to pay due heed to the future generations and well-being Act, I honestly don't see a problem with reducing speed limits, at all. The cost implication is pennies, but if it saves one life or if there is even the perception that there's a danger to life—. But I'm finding, in more and more of my rural villages, people are starting to get very concerned about being able to walk along—. Because some of these old villages don't have footpaths, and they've got hedgerows and things. I think this Government should be supporting all steps to—
I think that, in all fairness to the Government, they are saying that there's going to be a full-scale review of all these things—
—and, of course, some of these speed limits come under the local authority. So, the Welsh Government are, or we are, only really concerned with those remits that come under the Welsh Government, which are the trunk roads in Wales. So, whilst we obviously take on board your comments on that—
Well, I'd like to propose that we actually write again to the Cabinet Secretary and ask him whether—. Now that these are starting to come forward, it's the tip of the iceberg, really, and they should have a policy, really, of looking and actually implementing—. People can't go horse riding in villages anymore. These are all things that people in Wales—
It does say that the review will take information from locals with regard to their particular areas, doesn't it?
We're going to get more and more of these, and I think if we could perhaps just press the Cabinet Secretary to not put them on the back burner and say, 'We're having a review, we're having a review'—. Local authorities have been quick to act. In Conwy, my local authority—. Surely, on a bigger scale, it's a much bigger enterprise, the Welsh Government—
Well, yes, and I think maybe we do treat them in a way that we write to the Cabinet Secretary and say 'Will you be a little more clear on what action you'll take?' Because they could have a review and then he turns around and says, 'We don't feel there's a need'. At the end of the day, the people who live there know best. Where it's been proven, in my own constituency, people are so grateful, and differences have been made already just by dropping the speed limit by 10 mph.
I was just going to say that it's great to have the promise of a review. Do we have any evidence of how the review is currently ongoing and what results have come about from work already done on this review? Is there evidence to show that, where a review takes place in a particular locality, a decision is made that can lead to the changing of the speed limit, or is this just a completely nebulous review that actually isn't happening?
And these have been on our books, so to speak, since 2016, some of them. So, I think—
Can we ask the Government for some examples of how the review works in practice? 'Give us three examples of where a review has taken place in 2018 and what's likely to happen then.' Just so we can give confidence to the petitioners that their concerns are taken seriously.
Can I just add to what Rhun said? First of all, the A487 trunk road through Tre-Taliesin is another part of my road up north, but I think we perhaps ought to go further than what Rhun said, and ask the Cabinet Secretary for the principles underpinning the review.
I understand why they can't give a date in the future, and why they're going to look at this village, but—.
But if they have a principle that—you know, like they do for zebra crossings: to get a zebra crossing, you have to have so many people crossing the road and so much traffic. They put it into an equation and you come out with whether you can have a zebra crossing or not. Well, have they got something similar for reducing the speed limit? Because I can also see of course that if they reduced it through Tre-Taliesin, I'm sure that people in Borth would be saying—sorry, not Borth, but in Bow Street will be saying it needs to be reduced through Bow Street. So, I think we need some sort of principle of how they are doing it and what they expect to come out of it. If we can get that, then I think that's probably as far as we can go.
Neil, do you have any comments on that? You're happy with that.
So, do you have an idea of what's required?
Yes, we'll write back to the Cabinet Secretary and ask for some practical examples, maybe progress on how the review has worked to date, and look for those principles or the assessment criteria they use.
Okay. Fine. Okay. Thank you. We now move on to the next petition, which is 'Reopen Crumlin Railway Station'. It was submitted by Michael Davies and was first considered in September 2017, having collected 208 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 30 March and agreed to write to the Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport to ask if he is in a position to provide an update on the assessment process. A response from the Cabinet Secretary was received on 18 April. The petitioner then suggested that a new station in Crumlin had previously been considered a priority by the Welsh Government and has requested justification for why it was not shortlisted.
I'd go along with that, ask—[Interruption.] Sorry, Janet. I was going to say I'd go with asking how it's scored. I don't think any of us can say that Crumlin should be before lots of other stations, because we probably only know the stations in our own area reasonably well. So, just ask how it's scored and tell the petitioner how it's scored.
Do you know what really concerns me, though? You know that I'm really pleased to be on this committee and I think we do, we're able to, push things in front of the Cabinet Secretary very quickly. And this really winds me up. We know that Crumlin has the street with the poorest air pollution outside London and that improving public transport links is necessary to improve public health. We can't argue with that, and yet—you know, we'll spend hours debating about air pollution and things, and then when we get a way of solving it for not too much money, it's not shortlisted. And I'm thinking: where's the science behind how this Government makes their decisions? I don't even know where Crumlin is, so I have no—. But what I would like—. The fact is this petition—.
I obviously know Crumlin very, very well and I do know that it is—
Yes. It is a link for the Valleys. There are crossroads coming from other parts and other Valleys that concentrate in Crumlin, which is probably—. It's a very busy spot, which probably contributes to the pollution side of it. I think there could very well be justification for having a station placed there. They've got one just up the road from there, a junction that's nowhere near as busy, so—.
Well, let's ask for the scoring mechanism and then we can take it from there. Until we know how they score it and why they score it—.
Yes, I think that we're happy to do that. Yes.
Right. The next item, and we're grouping two other items now, because they are very similar in nature or they deal with the same problem. So, the first one is, 'For single use items: introduce a Deposit Return System for drink containers and make fast food containers and utensils compostable'. This was submitted by the Marine Conservation Society and was first considered by the committee in May 2017, having collected 1,993 signatures. The second of those petitions is 'Our natural world is being poisoned by single use plastics...it's time to introduce a tax!' The petition was submitted by Friends of Barry Beaches and was first considered by the committee in March 2018, having collected 102 signatures. The committee last considered both petitions on 13 March, when it considered P-05—which are the numbers for these petitions—P-05-803 for the first time, and held an evidence session with the petitioner for P-05-750. The committee agreed to write to the Minister for the Environment to ask when the extended producer responsibility research study will be published and for her to notify the committee once it is available. Do we have any comments with regard to this?
I'm very, very grateful to have these timely petitions on our books. The issue has taken on its own momentum by now in a way in that there are many initiatives, either led by Government or pushed by others, that, hopefully, will take us to a place where we have taxes and limits on the use of single-use plastics. We could take a couple of steps, we could wait for more from the Government, we could push them a little—
We should be pushing them. The only thing I would say is, if it's about a plastics tax, I think we should go to the Cabinet Secretary for Finance.
We ought to make the point that these matters are being considered extensively in Plenary at this moment in time.
Can I just say though, Hannah's—the Cabinet Minister's—response here, it talks very much about the deposit-return, which the petitioner's calling for, but No. 2:
'Legislate that all fast food containers and utensils, as well as take-away cups and lids, if not reusable or refillable or collected for recycling in store, are fully compostable.'
That agenda's a little bit behind in terms of the deposit-return scheme, so I think we should be writing back to the Cabinet Secretary to ask how they actually envisage dealing with those kinds of issues. Because we did a beach clean on Friday—I'd bring in other bans: wet wipes and things like that, but there we go. They're just choking our sea mammals and birdlife and everything. It doesn't matter where you go, with the remarkably clean beach we went on on Friday—and I had about 24 helpers, volunteers, coming forward to help—. However, you know, nine times out of 10, when we get down on the beach, you find the most horrendous examples of stuff. We had about eight or nine sacks the other day and that was all less stuff that could possibly be ingested. So, I think, you know—. I mean, fish and chips in a polystyrene carton—it shouldn't be any more.
Yes. Fine. I've actually put here, with possible actions, I've put 'or both', so, if we do these two possible actions, does that meet your concerns?
Yes. No. 2 doesn't seem to be getting the—picking up the momentum that the deposit-return scheme is. So, I suppose, really, thank the Cabinet Secretary and the Government itself for pushing on with the deposit-return scheme idea, but No. 2, I think, needs addressing more.
Can I suggest we go to the Cabinet Secretary for Finance regarding the plastics tax? That would come under his remit, not under the environment.
So, write to both and seek information about those points raised.
Right, the next petition is 'Calling on the Welsh Government to Ban The Use of Wild Animals in Circuses in Wales'. Now, the petitioner herself has some issues and she's asked us if we would postpone any further action on this matter until she asks us again to consider it. Are you happy to do that?
The petitioner herself has been in touch with the clerking office to say that she would like this matter to be postponed at this moment because she has certain issues with regard to what's gone on in the past, and she's asked us—she'll be in touch with us, obviously, with regard to this, but she's simply asked us to postpone this matter.
If I can add to that, before the—. You'll recall there was a Plenary debate on this petition. A briefing was supplied by RSPCA Cymru to support that briefing, which we published as part of the papers for this meeting in the interest that correspondence received on this petition was in the public domain. The petitioner was not satisfied with the fact that we published information from the RSPCA in support of this petition. So, that's the background as to why she's asked for us to defer this for a future date.
If she's asked to defer it, we've got no option, really, than to defer it.
The RSPCA, actually, came out in support of the petitioner, but she has issues with the RSPCA. I think that's what it comes down to.
Well, it's the issue that we consider, isn't it, in a way, rather than the person behind it?
I think it's in the petitioner's hands now. We'll just say we will agree to postpone it until the petitioner comes back to us. I think that's the—
I don't know a timescale for that. I don't think it will be—. I didn't have the impression it would be a significant period of time. It would come back to the committee. And, I think, in the meantime, it's fair to say that the Cabinet Secretary responded in a Plenary debate to say the Government is looking at this.
Yes, I hope so. We do want the Minister to come forward, though, and make that announcement that there's going to be a ban. That's what we'll all ultimately—. And Linda, to be fair, has worked extremely hard on this. It would be a shame, really, for that momentum to be lost in any way.
But it is the petitioner's petition and we have to abide by her decision.
So, can we move on to the next petition, which is 'Save the trees and ground in Roath Mill and Roath Brook Gardens before it's too late'? This petition was submitted by Tamsin Davies and collected some 8,700 signatures. The committee considered the petition for the first time and agreed to write to Natural Resources Wales. The Committee also wrote to Cardiff Council to ask for their views, although they've not responded. We've had a response from NRW on 24 April. So, with this number of signatures, obviously, it makes it eligible for us to consider it for debate in the Assembly Plenary sessions and, with regard to this, there is a moratorium on what they're doing in the park, which runs from March until July. So, there is a possibility that we could have the debate prior to July. So, are we—?
Let's see what happens between the petitioners and NRW. One of our great successes as a committee is that when we get a petition and we start contacting organisations, they actually start—. People who haven't talked to each other previously start talking to each other. I think that is the real success of the petition system, that it gets people talking who otherwise don't. Let's see what happens at the end of their discussions, and they'll come back to us. If they reach agreement, we don't do anything. If they don't reach agreement, then we can consider asking for a Plenary debate.
Because I think it's very important to be honest with people about what the purpose is of an Assembly debate. I've seen, for example, in relation to the debate on the Hinkley mud, that people consider this to be a vote on whether or not to dump the mud. Well, of course, that's not how it works—it's a straight discussion on an issue and this wouldn't be a vote on whether or not to cut trees in that part of Cardiff. So, it's urging that debate to go forward. And they're doing such good work as a community here in terms of paying for the hydrologist—we need to make sure that their evidence, their work, is taken on board by NRW. And, with those discussions still ongoing, there are outcomes before we know exactly what we'll be talking about in the Chamber.
What concerned me a little about this is that NRW say they have done all the reviews et cetera and then they suddenly come down in the number of trees that need to be cut down. Well, why wasn't that brought up in their first initial analysis of what they had to do there? Perhaps, Neil, you could give us a bit more information with regard to that.
Yes. I was involved very early on with this campaign—great response from the community. I think, really, with NRW, what we're seeing are examples of extremely bad practice. I've been involved in politics a long time, about 33 years now, and been to various briefings over the years, with officials and various organisations. The only briefing I've ever had where the officials have said that there is no alternative was the briefing by NRW, and they told the Minister, 'Look, there is no alternative.' The information that I have from people who work in the field is that there are alternatives. What I'd like to do is write to NRW, as is suggested, sharing the views of the petitioners, but also I'd like to write to Cardiff council again, asking them for their professional view of highering and lowering the lake at Roath park, and what the environmental effects of that will be. I'd like, also, to write to NRW for them to clarify the environmental damage that will be done by highering and lowering the lake occasionally. Because, what we were told, which I didn't particularly agree with, actually, was that putting the lake up and putting the lake down, depending on the flow of the water from upstream, will have a massively negative effect and destroy all the trees in that part of the park, which I don't necessarily agree with.
Was this the one where they reviewed the possible occurrence of flooding, where they said it's 24 per cent, and then it came down to something like 1.5 per cent?
That's another one. They have all the figures. The irony is, this area has flooded recently. The reason is because the drains were blocked with leaves. There's been no occurrence of floods in this area due to the brook ever, and it's a nonsense really. It's so ironic that they can't clean the drains and therefore the roads flood, and yet they're spending millions on work that really doesn't need doing, in many people's opinions. If we can write and clarify, it's really important that we—. I'd like to put the officials on the spot, really—NRW—and be told professionally what environmental damage will be done by highering and lowering the depth of the lake. It's an easy solution, I think.
I'm happy with that, but I think the key has still got to be that the petitioners and NRW are talking. We want to give the petitioners an opportunity to come back to us if they're not happy with the end result of that.
I just want to say about NRW, because I think this is where we have an in-built class bias in Wales. There are a lot of very talented people in the area: very able lawyers, professionals—they've done a brilliant job. I really take my hat off to them, but I guarantee that if this was maybe in another area, where the people weren't so qualified professionally, NRW wouldn't have paid them the blindest bit of notice. In terms of this Petitions Committee, I think maybe we should have the right to refer matters for a vote on whether or not things should be actioned, rather than just opinion, but I think that's a discussion for another day, really.
No, I mean, Neil's well briefed on this, and I just think we should—. I support them.
We're talking now about writing again to the agencies involved to get their responses. How does that fit in with regard to us having a debate, if we delay it slightly now?
I think, obviously, if we take those actions—writing to NRW, writing to Cardiff council—we will wait for the responses and put them back on a committee agenda. I would anticipate that would be before summer recess. I suppose that would mean the timescales for any debate would then be after the summer, if the committee chose to take that option. My understanding is that the work here is paused until July to enable the community to get the opinion of a hydrologist and for that to be considered by NRW.
I don't think it's time for a debate yet. Possibly in the future, but I think we ought to see where we are first.
Fine. Okay, are we all agreed?
The next petition is 'A call for the return of 24 hour Consultant led Obstetrics, Paediatrics and SCBU to Withybush DGH'. The petition was submitted by SWAT, the Save Withybush Action Team, and was first considered by the committee in July 2017, having collected 3,532 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 27 February, and agreed to write to the community health council to seek its views on the issues raised by the petition, and to seek further information to verify the statement made by the health board that the number of stillbirths across its area since 2015 compared favourably with other UK maternity units of comparable birth numbers. A response from the Hywel Dda community health council was received on 24 April.
Well, you know my views. We've been very fortunate to have a unit now in north Wales as a result of people being very concerned that we would be left in a similar predicament. It just seems a no-brainer. If we can't provide very safe and consistent services for new Welsh children being born then it's pretty bad. I'd like to support this, you know, keep going with it.
I was going to make a political point, but we're a petitions committee.
Yes. Did you see the note saying that Members may wish to be aware that a new petition about the current proposals for service reconfiguration is currently collecting signatures and will be referred to the committee in the future? Should we leave it to that because they will have had a proper review of what's gone on between this petition and—? So, if we close this petition, it gives us a clear field then to consider the next petition.
Is that fair on the petitioner, though, that because a new one is being instigated by other people—?
There's a way of doing that, which is to contact them and say, 'In light of things having moved on, and we assume that you would share many of the same concerns as the other petitioners, are you content for us to concentrate on that?' We're talking about a situation of some years ago now, going back to 2014, and the issues are changing, especially in light of reviews of service provision in that part of Wales now anyway.
So, we'll close this petition with the caveat that we explain to the petitioner why that is.
The next petition is 'Ensure access to the cystic fibrosis medicine, Orkambi, as a matter of urgency'. This petition was submitted by Rhian Barrance and was first considered by the committee in January 2018, having collected 5,717 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 13 March and agreed to write to the Cabinet Secretary to ask whether the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group has now contacted Vertex to ask them to submit their evidence and to request an update when the response is received; and also to Vertex to ask them for information about discussions they've held with the Welsh Government in relation to making Orkambi available to Welsh patients. A response from the Cabinet Secretary was received on 18 April and a response from Vertex was received on 2 May.
There seems to have been some sort of impasse between Vertex and the Welsh Government over this issue. So, we could possibly have an evidence session with regard to this to ask for those parties to come in—Vertex and the Welsh Government—and ask about this impasse and why it came about.
Yes. Mike, just to bring you up-to-date, we are looking at the cystic fibrosis medicine, Orkambi. We've just decided that it may very well be a good idea to hold an evidence session with the Welsh Government and Vertex. Those two parties, are they the only two parties that we—?
Yes, I think in this instance where there's an ongoing dialogue—or there was—between the two—
I thought, as a committee, we were trying to delve into whether the Government officials—. One is blaming the other and there's a bit of buck-passing going on here.
Sorry, I should clarify that we're receiving mixed messages, I think, as a committee, about the status of those discussions. There have been discussions—both parties state that—but we're not sure of the current status. So, I think those are the two parties. I think it's a choice for the committee as to whether you would want to seek that information in writing or call them in and ask for evidence here.
I think it needs an evidence session to sort out, really, who's—. I appreciate that the drugs company will want to try and introduce a cocktail of other medications along with it, and I know that Orkambi isn't suitable for all and there are other alternatives, but we shouldn't be, really, getting involved in that wrangle. At the end of the day, this petition really is specific.
In view of the time, Janet, if I can say that we are in agreement, I think, that we'll have an evidence session for this and we'll invite the parties in.
I think there'll be a choice for the committee in that. So, the couple of meetings in June that the committee's got, we'll be looking at the Welsh independent living grant petition. Those sessions are set up.
There are two meetings in July. We had possibly earmarked them for evidence around technical advice note 1. Members have talked about that before. We haven't progressed that in terms of invitations for those meetings yet, so there's the opportunity to switch if you'd rather do Orkambi at that point.
Yes, additionally, though, can the committee press the Cabinet Secretary to look into the procurement issue and to clarify the Vertex claim that they've provided a fully-costed proposal for all the medicines to NHS Wales at a meeting on 21 February 2018? Can we confirm whether that is correct or otherwise, with Cab Sec?
We can do, but, of course, that would come under the evidence session. That's the idea, to find out exactly what—
Well, a simple letter now, though, just gets things—. We have a right to know. Given that we have been told one thing and then another, I think the straightforward question to the Cabinet Secretary is: 'Was that the case or not?'
Fine. Okay. Right, we'll move on to the next petition, which is 'Review support for asylum seekers accessing further education'. The petition was submitted by Gulnar Sohail and was first considered in December 2017, having collected 78 signatures. The committee last considered the petition on 13 March. A response was received from the Minister for Welsh Language and Lifelong Learning on 18 April. So, the possible actions are that the committee could await the outcome of the current consultation and subsequent decisions made by the Minister, as well as comments from the petitioner, before determining any further action on the petition. Are we happy that that should be the situation?
Okay. The following petitions are proposed for closure. The first of these is 'Please make Senedd TV accessible to deaf people'. The petition was submitted by Mervyn James and was first considered as long ago as January 2014, having collected 25 signatures. Although the clerking teen has attempted to contact Mr Mervyn James, there has been no correspondence since November of last year. So, it's very difficult for us to carry petitions forward if there's no response from the petitioner themselves.
It's very sad, isn't it? Can I just ask, though, in terms of the Assembly Commission, what is the big deal about putting subtitles on? This is something that we can't really pin on the Welsh Government. I can't see what the problem is.
Perhaps a route forward is one of us—perhaps you, as the Chairman, David—to raise it under questions for the Assembly Commission.
But there's been a big report out this weekend, hasn't there, about youngsters in schools not being able to—you know, deaf children not being able to access. If they can't access the democracy of Wales—. The tv is a good sort of vehicle for people to—. I'd hate to think that somebody who is trying to understand what is going on in this committee here—
I think Mike's suggestion is excellent: that we ask the question of the Commission.
When I was in another life, we used to have lots of problems with live subtitling—lots of technical problems when I was presenting programmes from the Assembly in the early days. There were all sorts of issues, which can't be ignored, but having said that, we need to be looking—. In a few years' time, this will be resolved, because voice recognition will take us to a place where technology does this for us. There are lots of issues with accessibility of language, for example, as well, where everything that I say in Welsh is voiced over, so nobody gets to hear me in my first language—lots of issues involved here. But I think it's a good idea to bring this particular issue up in a question to the commissioners.
Well, I would say that David, as Chairman of the committee, could do that, on behalf of the committee, and then we can ask supplementaries on it. But you could then say that we've had a petition into the Petitions Committee, and this is a matter for the Commission—I'm asking this question. Are you happy with that?
Okay. Yes, fine.
The next petition we're considering for closing is 'Trees in Towns'. Just to say that the clerking team have been in contact, or tried to contact the petitioner, but we've had no response, and they've been doing that since last October.
The climate change committee is taking this forward and we've got lots of forestry and woodland discussions. So, this really has moved on to another committee.
Mind you, it does beg the question—2,258 people signed the petition. Just because the actual petitioner can't be—. You'd think that somebody else would be wondering how it was getting along.
Sorry, it doesn't say in your brief the date, but this petition has had some quite detailed discussion at committee in the past, going back just to the changeover between the fourth and the fifth Assembly. So, it's only recently that the trail has gone cold, if you like, and I think the last time the committee considered this, it was on the basis that Members weren't sure there was anything more we could do with this, and we gave the petitioner the opportunity to suggest a future course of action.
The climate change committee are taking this forward as one of their major issues of woodland and forestry and urban coverage. So, it's likely to come back into the Assembly, but not from here, but from the climate change committee.
We produced a report on forestry last year, but we keep on coming back to it and raising issues on it, and urban trees is very much one of them.
Okay. The next petition is 'To recognize the three hundredth anniversary of Williams Pantycelyn', submitted by Aled Gwyn Job, and was first considered in October 2017, having collected 1,114 signatures. Now, the clerking office has attempted to speak to Aled Gwyn Job, or get comments from him, since November, but have had no response.
But, we've achieved a lot—a lot has happened, hasn't it? We've had an exhibition here. We've also had two 90-second statements regarding William Willams Pantycelyn. I assume that the Cabinet Secretary's willingness to support other events, if people want to have them, is as far as we can go. But we have celebrated it in this building on two occasions.
And can I just correct that Arfon, actually, is in north Wales.
I've been personally involved in trying to facilitate some discussions with these campaigners and various parties to try to move things forward. I think we've done as much as we can, obviously, as a committee, not least in that the three centuries—the tricentenary has gone. I wish them well in continuing to find a way to celebrate William Williams's life for the long term, but I'm not sure there's anything else that we can do as a committee at this point.
I would like to just note that Aled is very passionate about this, and we thank him for the way he's brought it to the committee very comprehensively.
If we could write to him and thank him for such an enlightening petition.
Events that have happened in the national library and in the Senedd, and also the two 90-second statements.
Fine, thank you.
The next one we're considering for closure is 'Ensuring Equality of Curriculum for Welsh Medium Schools e.g. GCSE Psychology'. It was submitted by Chris Evans and was first considered by the committee in November 2017, having collected 652 signatures. The committee clerking team has been trying to make contact, or have been in contact, but they've had no comment since November.
It's with real regret, I think, that this grinds to a halt, and I don't think we have any choice, given that contact with the petitioner has ended. I wonder whether there's a contact we can make with Welsh Government to pass this on. We contacted Qualifications Wales rather than Welsh Government—am I right? Or did we contact Welsh Government as well?
I believe that, in this situation, we wrote to the Cabinet Secretary for Education first and we were told that we should write to Qualifications Wales.
Should we contact the Minister for the Welsh language to raise this as an issue, to bring this to her attention? As I say, this is really rather important, and it would have been nice to pursue this a bit more.
I know they were just talking about one GCSE. What I don't know—perhaps Rhun can tell me—is how many other GCSEs are not available through the medium of Welsh. I think perhaps we ought to be writing to Qualifications Wales asking which GCSEs are provided in Wales by them or other examining boards in English but not in Welsh.
What strikes me is that what we are being told is that, if we demand this one, they'll say, 'Well, we're not going to give you any exams.' I'd like to hope that that's not how examination bodies across the border in England would wish to operate, and I'd want to know that everything possible is being done to make sure that examining bodies operating in Wales are given every opportunity and help and assistance and support to provide curricula and examinations through the medium of Welsh. We just haven't got the evidence.
I think that, if Members would like to pursue this issue, there might be another course of action. It would seem perhaps premature to close the petition in light of the fact that there are various people you want to get answers from and things you want to look at. There is no reason that the committee can't progress something, and comments from the petitioner in the future may be a bonus for the committee, but it can take it forward on its own.
Yes. I think we need to know how big an issue it is—whether it's just one GCSE or whether it covers a range of GCSEs. That's the important issue—and why WJEC don't do it.
Yes, and what crossover there is between responsibilities of one Minister on the Welsh language side and education.
I just find it astonishing, really, that exams can take place in Wales where they're not offered through the medium of Welsh. It wouldn't happen in any other country in the entire world. If any qualifying or awarding body doesn't want to do business in Wales, then great, don't make money here.
Yes. Are we saying, really, that the Welsh Government should seek alternatives if it's not offered by those particular boards?
Or facilitate it. Is everything being done? Has every stone been turned over to look for ways of assisting them, because, presumably, they're looking to extend their activities into as many schools as possible, be that in Wales or Scotland or, I don't know, anywhere. Let's see if we can help them.
I agree, but I think the key thing is: is this one or are there—? We need to see the size of the problem. We've had somebody come with one subject. I think it would be wrong of us to sort of say, 'That's it.' If you take it that the petitioner has probably done their A-levels now and it's passed them by, as it were, but it's for the future, and which subjects aren't available is important.
It's part of a broader agenda as well on fair play for those pupils who want to study through the medium of Welsh. I'll tell you a story about a pupil who I know quite well who was told that in handing her work in through the medium of Welsh the teacher would Google Translate it to mark it for GCSE. That's not acceptable. And when you have pupils who are studying through the medium of Welsh and using textbooks through the medium of English because Government hasn't got them ready in time—this is a wider agenda.
It's not the Government, though, it's the WJEC, isn't it? This is, again, one of the problems that we have: we talk to the Welsh Government but it's the WJEC that are responsible, and the WJEC are responsible to its board, which is made up of the local authorities in Wales. Qualifications Wales is involved somewhere—that's an arm's-length body. It seems to be an awful lot of people out there making these decisions who we can't get at.
I'm mindful of the time, and the next matter that we're moving on to is an evidence session. Can we ask the two participants to come in?
Good morning, bore da, and welcome to this evidence session, where we'll be discussing and getting some evidence from you with regard to a petition that we are looking at, which is 'Change the National Curriculum and teach Welsh history, from a Welsh perspective, in our Primary, Secondary and Sixth form Schools'. The petition was submitted to us by Elfed Wyn Jones, and was first considered by the committee in February 2018, having collected 5,794 signatures.
Just to give you a brief background as to where we are with this: given the high level of interest in this subject, indicated by the number of signatures that the petition gathered, we agreed to invite you here today—Elfed is the lead petitioner—to outline the background and reasons behind your petition in more detail. We also agreed to invite Dr Jones, to provide—I'm sorry, it says 'her', and I'm sure that's quite wrong, so I would say 'his' perspective on this subject, in light of your previous role chairing a task and finish group that explored the future development of Cwricwlwm Cymreig in 2012-13. However, I should note that it is your personal views and reflections that you will be providing here today. Is that correct?
Ydy, mae e. Rwyf wedi trafod gydag aelodau'r tasglu, ac maen nhw wedi rhoi sylwadau i fi, ond nid wyf yn siarad drostyn nhw—nid wyf yn credu ei bod yn deg i fi siarad drostyn nhw. Ond mae gyda chi'r adroddiad o'ch blaen chi, ac mae hwnnw'n adlewyrchu eu syniadau nhw. Rwyf hefyd wedi rhoi i chi fy sylwadau i ar gynigion yr Athro Donaldson a beth rwy'n ei weld fel eu diffygion nhw o safbwynt yr argymhellion y gwnaethom ni yn yr adroddiad. Iawn?
Yes, it is. I have discussed with members of the taskforce, and they have given me comments, but I'm not speaking for them—I don't think it's fair for me to speak on their behalf. But you have the report in front of you, and that reflects their ideas. I have also provided you with my comments on Professor Donaldson's proposals and what I see as their deficiencies in terms of the recommendations we made in the report. Is that all right?
Fine. Okay, fine. Thank you for that. The nature of these inquiries is that it's a question-and-answer session, as such. I shall open the questioning and my colleagues will follow on after. We're mindful of time in this, so if you could be as succinct in your answers as possible, because there are quite a number of questions that we'd like to get through, if we may. So, just if you could bear that in mind. I'll open the questions: can you explain the importance of Welsh history in the curriculum in Wales?
I fi, ie?
To me, yes?
Iawn. Rydw i'n credu bod hanes yn bwysig yng nghwricwlwm pob gwlad. Mae Taoiseach Gweriniaeth Iwerddon newydd ddatgan pwysigrwydd hanes i’w wlad e. Mae’n rhoi rhyw fath o gefndir i ni a chyd-destun i bob pwnc arall yn y cwricwlwm. Mae’n trafod hanes pobl yn y rhan hon o’r byd, mae’n trafod hanes pobl ledled y byd yn eu hanes nhw eu hunain. Rwy’n credu ei bod yn egwyddor gadarn iawn mewn addysg eich bod chi'n dechrau wrth eich traed, fel roedd yr hen ffarmwr yn dweud wrth y gwas; eich bod chi’n dechrau o’r cyfarwydd a’r diriaethol ac yn symud ymlaen i’r anghyfarwydd a’r haniaethol. Rŷch chi’n gweld bod y meddwl yn datblygu, ond rŷch chi’n gwreiddio yn eich daear ac yn eich cefndir ac yn eich hanes a'ch iaith chi eich hunain, cyn symud ymlaen â’r sylfaen gadarn, gyda’ch gwreiddiau, i ymestyn allan a gweld y byd yn ehangach o’ch cwmpas chi, a gweld ble mae’ch hanes chi’n ffitio i mewn i hanes gwledydd eraill—Prydain yn arbennig—Ewrop a’r byd.
Yes. I think that history is important in the curriculum of every country. The Taoiseach of the Republic of Ireland has recently declared the importance of history to his country. It gives some kind of background and context to every other subject in the curriculum. It discusses the history of people in this corner of the world, it discusses the history of people across the world in their own history. I think that it's a robust principle in education that you start at your feet, as the old farmer said to the farm hand; you start with the familiar and the concrete and you move on to the unfamiliar and the abstract . Your mind develops, but you are rooted in your geography, in your background and in your history and in your own language, before you move forward with a firm foundation, with your roots, to reach out and see the world in a broader context, and see where your history fits into the history of other countries—the UK especially—Europe and the world.
Rwy'n cytuno efo pob gair ddaru Dr Jones ei ddweud. Rydw i’n gweld ei bod yn bwysig hefyd i edrych ar hanes cenedlaethol Cymru, sef y digwyddiadau sydd wedi digwydd yn y wlad sy’n effeithio ar y wlad yn gyfan. Ond hefyd, mae’n bwysig edrych ar yr hanes yn lleol, hefyd; beth sy’n digwydd yn yr ardaloedd penodol. Mae yna ddigwyddiadau sydd wedi siapio’n cymunedau ni, ac mae’n hollbwysig bod y plant a’r bobl ifanc yr ardaloedd hyn yn deall lle mae’u gwreiddiau nhw, a sut maen nhw a’r gymuned maen nhw’n byw ynddi hi wedi cyrraedd i’r man lle maen nhw heddiw, wrth gwrs. Mae hynny, wedyn, yn rhoi rhyw bersbectif ar y wlad, ond hefyd ar yr ardal benodol yna, ac yn codi rhyw ymwybyddiaeth ac elfen o falchder gyda hynny wedyn.
I agree with every word that Dr Jones has said. I see that it's important also to look at the national history of Wales and the events that happen in the country that have an impact on the country as a whole. But, also, it's important to look at local history; what's happening in specific areas. There are events that have shaped our communities and it's vital that the children and young people of those areas understand where their roots are and how they and their communities have arrived at that point where they are today. That, then, provides some sort of perspective on the country, but also on that specific area, and raises an awareness and an element of pride, as well, in that.
Fine, thank you, Elfed. What specific concerns do you have about the way history is currently taught in our schools?
Rwy'n gweld bod yna deimlad cyffredin ymhlith pobl nad oes digon o hanes Cymru'n cael ei ddysgu. Nid wyf yn hollol siŵr pam mae hynny, oherwydd mae’r cwricwlwm cyfredol wedi bod yn rhoi lle canolog i hanes lleol ac i hanes Cymru o fewn cyd-destun ehangach o’r cychwyn. Ond, am ryw reswm, ymddengys o dystiolaeth yr oeddem ni wedi'i chasglu, fel tasglu, nad yw hynny yn digwydd. Mae prinder ymchwil ac mae prinder tystiolaeth yn broblem, ac nid wyf i'n gwybod pam nad oes mwy o ymchwil wedi’i wneud i hyn. Rwy’n ofni yn fawr iawn os nad oes rhyw fath o dystiolaeth yn cael ei darganfod o beth sy’n cael ei wneud, bydd y maes yn agored i honiadau di-sail ac i bropaganda.
I see that there is a general feeling amongst people that not enough Welsh history is being taught. I'm not entirely sure why that is, because the current curriculum places local history and Welsh history centrally within the broader context from the very outset. But, for some reason, it seems that, from the evidence we've collected as a taskforce, that's not happening. There is a shortage of research and a shortage of evidence, which is a problem, and I'm not sure why more research hasn't been done on this. I'm very concerned that if evidence of what is being done is not sought, then what will happen is that the field will be open to baseless claims and propaganda.
Mae'n bwysig, fel roeddwn i'n ei ddweud—sylfaen gwlad ydy ei hanes hi yn y dechrau. Nid ydym yn deall lle mae democratiaeth wedi datblygu. Buasai mwy o falchder yn yr adeilad lle’r ydym ni rŵan pe bai pobl yn gwybod am y frwydr sydd wedi bod ers adeg Llywelyn i gael cydnabyddiaeth i Gymru fel gwlad. Mae jest yn dangos bod yna anwybodaeth o’r sefydliadau sydd gennym ni yn y wlad, a hefyd, rhywbeth pwysig, sef yr iaith Gymraeg. Mae yna bobl sydd ddim yn sylweddoli dyfnder ei hanes hi. Pe bai pobl yn sylweddoli rhywbeth mor werthfawr ydy’r iaith a’r hanes mor ddwfn sydd ganddi, buasai yna fwy, hwyrach, yn teimlo’r awch i'w dysgu hi ac yn enwedig, wedyn, i’w pharchu hi.
It's important, as I said—a country's foundation is its history from the beginning. We need to understand where democracy has begun. There would be more pride in the building we are in now if people knew about the battle since the time of Llywelyn to recognise Wales as a country. It just shows that there isn't an awareness of the institutions and organisations that we have in our country, and another vital element, namely the Welsh language. People don't realise the depth of its history. If people understood how valuable the language is and the history associated with it, perhaps more would feel the desire to learn the language and to respect it.
Yes, fine. Well, we know that the task and finish group brought a report out in September and we're wondering whether you think that there's been any change since that report came out.
Wel, rwy'n meddwl ei bod wedi bod yn broblem. Nid oes unrhyw arweiniad wedi cael ei roi, oherwydd, fe gyhoeddwyd hynny yn 2013 a rŷm ni wedi symud ymlaen nawr i adroddiad Donaldson ac mae cwricwlwm seiliedig ar adroddiad Donaldson yn cael ei ddatblygu ar hyn o bryd. Ond, yn y cyfamser, mae ysgolion wedi bod yn y tywyllwch i raddau pell iawn ynglŷn â pha fath o hanes, pa fath o arweiniad, oherwydd er i'r argymhellion yn yr adroddiad gael eu derbyn i gyd ar y pryd, nid ydyn nhw'n ymddangos yn glir iawn yn adroddiad Donaldson, yn enwedig y ffordd mae e'n trafod y persbectif Cymraeg a'r cyd-destun i ddysgu iaith a diwylliant Cymru. Felly, rwy'n teimlo nad oes dim symud ymlaen wedi bod. Os rhywbeth, mae symud yn ôl wedi bod, ond rwy'n dweud eto: bach iawn o dystiolaeth sydd.
Un peth sydd yn dda yw bod y cwrs TGAU wedi cael ei newid yn ddiweddar i gynnwys elfen integredig o hanes Cymru o fewn persbectif ehangach, ac mae hynny i'w groesawu yn bendant. Ond nid ydym ni'n gwybod faint o hanes Cymru sydd yn cael ei ddysgu, faint o hanes lleol sy'n cael ei ddysgu, faint o hanes y byd sy'n cael ei ddysgu. Mae rhai yn cwyno—i fi, beth bynnag—bod y plant yn gwneud Hitler, Hitler a Hitler yn yr ysgol, ac mae hwnnw'n beth peryglus iawn, ond nid wyf i'n gwybod a yw e'n wir neu beidio. Felly, fe fyddwn i'n meddwl bod angen mwy o dystiolaeth a bod angen dathlu arfer da ble bynnag rydych chi'n ei ffeindio fe.
Well, I think it has been a problem. No guidance has been provided, because that was published in 2013 and we've moved on to the Donaldson report now and a curriculum based on the Donaldson report is being developed currently. But, in the meantime, schools have been in the dark to a great extent regarding what sort of history, what sort of guidance, because although the recommendations in the report were accepted, they don't appear very clearly in the Donaldson report, in particular the way he discusses the Welsh perspective and the context to teach the language and culture of Wales. Therefore, I feel that no movement forward has occurred. If anything, things have gone backwards, but I say again: very little evidence exists.
One good thing is that the GCSE course has been changed recently to include an integrated element of Welsh history within a wider perspective, and that is to be welcomed most certainly. But we don't know how much Welsh history is being taught, how much local history is being taught, how much world history is being taught. Some people complain—to me at least—that children study Hitler, Hitler, Hitler in school, and that is something that's very dangerous, but I don't know whether it's true or not. So, I would think that there's a need for more evidence and a need to celebrate good practice wherever you find it.
Ie, jest yn gweld oeddwn i, o ran y cynlluniau sydd wedi cael eu gosod, er bod y cynlluniau'n edrych yn dda ar bapur, nid ydynt yn dal i fod wedi'u gweithredu'n iawn. Mae yna'n dal tipyn o wacter, fel roeddech chi'n dweud, efo'r ffordd rydym ni eisiau dysgu'r hanes yma, ac yn enwedig dysgu hanes lleol. Er bod y papur yn dweud ei bod yn bwysig dysgu hynny, fel roeddech chi'n ddweud, rwy'n dal heb weld tystiolaeth o hynny'n digwydd eto.
Yes, I was just looking at the schemes that have been set and, although they look good on paper, they still haven't been implemented properly. There's still a gap regarding the way in which we want to teach this history, and especially local history. Although the paper says that it's important to teach that, as you said, I haven't seen any evidence of that happening thus far.
My experience of the last four years of GCSE and A-level history, as my daughter went through it, was that, yes, GCSE was South Africa, America—and I was surprised to find that Bill Clinton was history—and Germany. Then we went on to A-level, and it was the United States and Germany again. I think there is a lack of discussion on history; there could be more done on history. This is where you'll probably disagree with me: I think that history and Wales did not start with Llywelyn. The history of Wales existed well before that, and there are whole parts of Wales and the ancient kingdoms of Wales that most people couldn't name. If they did, they'd think of the current counties, which is not quite true. But don't you agree that, if we're doing GCSE and A-level, there needs to be a broader curriculum covering Wales and Wales's relationship with the rest of the world? But, when I did GCSE, which was, again, in the 1970s, we studied Welsh social and economic history from 1776 to 1950, I think, or 1945, but it was much more useful. My daughter and her contemporaries have got, really, an encyclopaedic history of Germany, especially between the first world war and the end of the second world war, of the United States of America, of South Africa, but not of Wales, Britain and Wales's role in that. Isn't that one of the problems?
Mae e'n agosach at TGAU a lefel A na fi, felly ydych chi'n moyn ateb gyntaf?
He's closer to GCSE and A-level than me, so do you want to answer first?
Tair blynedd sydd wedi bod ers i mi orffen fy lefel A, ac rydw i'n meddwl mai'r agosaf y gwnes i ddod at hanes Cymru, neu'r unig beth wnaeth gyffwrdd â hanes Cymru, oedd pan wnaeth Dug Mynwy wrthryfela yn erbyn Harri VIII. Rwy'n cytuno'n llwyr fod angen edrych ar hanes Cymru ymhell cyn hanes Llywelyn, a datblygu cwricwlwm sy'n edrych ar hanes Cymru y wlad a'i pherthynas gyda Prydain, Ewrop a'r byd, a'r rôl rydym ni wedi ei chwarae mewn digwyddiadau ar hyd y cyfnod yma. Mae angen i ni ddatblygu cwrciwlwm sy'n dangos nid yn unig pobl Cymru, ond i ddathlu y bobl sydd wedi symud i mewn i Gymru hefyd sydd wedi datblygu ein cymunedau ni a diwydiannau. Mae hanes wedyn yn ein galluogi ni i edrych ar, fel roeddech chi'n dweud, bolisïau economaidd. Mae hanes jest yn ddechrau i ddatblygiadau eraill y byddan nhw'n eu gwneud o fewn y cwricwlwm wedyn.
There are only three years since I finished A-levels, and I think that the closest I came to the history of Wales, or the only thing that touched on Welsh history, was the Monmouth revolt. I completely agree that we need to look at the history of Wales far before Llywelyn's history, and we need to develop a curriculum that looks at the history of Wales as a country and its relationship with Britain, Europe and the world, and the role that we've played in events throughout this period. We need to develop a curriculum that not only highlights the people of Wales, but celebrates those who moved into Wales and developed our communities and industries. History then allows us to look at economic policies, as you were saying. History is just the start of it, leading to other developments in the curriculum.
Druan ag e—y disgybl o flaen ei athrawes. Druan ag e. Ond rŷch chi'n iawn—roedd y cwrs yna yn gwrs defnyddiol iawn, sef y cwrs hanes economaidd a chymdeithasol, ac roedd e'n rhoi'r hanes yna yn ei gyd-destun, fel roeddech chi'n ei ddweud, ac mae yna gulhau wedi bod am nifer o resymau. Yn ogystal â bod yn gyfrifol am y cwricwlwm hanes yng Nghymru am 15 mlynedd, roeddwn i hefyd yn gwirio—accredit—y cymwysterau TGAU hanes a llywodraeth a gwleidyddiaeth ac economeg—lefel A a TGAU—ac roedd y problemau a oedd yn digwydd oherwydd y newidiadau i'r meysydd llafur hynny yn golygu eu bod yn anodd i'w gweithredu'n effeithiol. Dros y blynyddoedd diwethaf, mae mwy a mwy o bwyslais wedi ei roi ar ysgolion i gael y canlyniadau. Fel cyn-athrawes fy hun, rwy'n gwybod y ffordd orau i gael canlyniadau, sef dysgu'r un hen beth dro ar ôl tro ar ôl tro, ond nid yw hynny'n ddysgu da ac nid yw'n ehangu gorwelion disgyblion.
Poor Elfed—the pupil before his teacher. But you're right—that course was a very useful course, namely the social and economic history course, and it did provide that history in a context, as you said, and there has been a narrowing for a number of reasons. As well as being responsible for the history curriculum in Wales for about 15 years, I was also accrediting GCSE history, and A-level and GCSE politics and economics, and the problems that occurred because of the changes to the syllabuses at that time meant that they were difficult to implement. Over the last few years, more and more emphasis has been placed on schools to get the results. As a former teacher myself, I know the best way to get the results, and that is to teach the same old things over and over again, but that's not good teaching and it doesn't broaden pupils' horizons.
Just very briefly, I think if you asked the average 19-year-old doing a university history course, who have just come out of GCSE and A-level, they would probably be able to tell you far more about Rosa Parks than they could about Dic Penderyn.
Eithaf gwir, eithaf gwir, ac roedd athrawon prifysgol wedi dweud hynny wrth y panel—pan oeddwn i'n gwneud hynny—ac roedd e'n bryder iddyn nhw bod cyn lleied o wybodaeth gyda'r glasfyfyrwyr o gefndir hanesyddol ehangach a hefyd hanes yn fwy perthnasol iddyn nhw eu hunain.
Quite true, quite true, and university professors and lecturers told the panel at the time—when I used to do that work—that it was a concern of theirs that first-year students had a lack of information about a broader historic context and also about history relevant to them.
Os caf fi ychwanegu, rwy'n byw yn Nhrawsfynydd ac rwy'n byw tua saith milltir o Dryweryn, lle boddwyd y pentref, ac rwy'n gwybod mwy am bolisi economaidd America a beth oedd yn digwydd yn y Dust Bowl yn America nag am beth ddaru ddigwydd yn Llyn Celyn. Cefais mwy o wybodaeth am hanes Cymru drwy fy ngwersi Cymraeg na beth wnes i erioed drwy bwnc hanes, sy'n drychineb a dweud y gwir.
If I may add to that, I live in Trawsfynydd and I live about seven miles away from Tryweryn, where the village was drowned, and I know more about the economic policies of America and what happened in the Dust Bowl in America than what happened in Llyn Celyn. I learnt more Welsh history through my Welsh language lessons than I did through my history lessons, which is a tragedy.
Mae sawl un wedi dweud hynny wrthyf fi pan oeddwn i'n casglu tystiolaeth ar gyfer yr adroddiad.
Many people told me that when I was gathering evidence for the report.
Ie, bore da. Diolch yn fawr iawn i chi. Diolch, Elfed, yn gyntaf am gyflwyno'r ddeiseb yma i ni. Nid oes angen i mi ddweud fy mod i'n cyd-fynd yn llwyr â'r hyn sydd y tu ôl i hwn ac a gaf fi ddweud hefyd mor falch ydw i o gael un o brif ffigurau darparu pobl Cymru â gwybodaeth am eu hanes nhw, sef Dr Jones, efo ni hefyd?
Cwpwl o gwestiynau ynglŷn â'r gwaith a wnaethoch chi ei arwain efo'r grŵp. Mi allwn ni gymryd yr adroddiad hwnnw fel rhan o'n tystiolaeth ni, wrth gwrs, ac rydym ni'n gwybod beth ydy eich syniad chi ynglŷn â dysgu hanes. Pam ydych chi'n meddwl bod yna gymaint o amser wedi pasio rhwng paratoi'r darn pwysig yna o waith ac unrhyw gamau gweithredu arno fo?
Yes, good morning. Thank you very much to you. Thank you, Elfed, first of all for submitting this petition. I'd like to say that I completely agree with what's behind it, and may I also say how pleased I am to have one of the main figures in terms of the provision of Welsh history to the people of Wales with us today also in Dr Jones?
A few questions about the work that you did to lead the group. We can take that report as part of our evidence, of course, and we know what your ideas are regarding the teaching of history. Why do you think so much time has passed between that very important piece of work and any action taken in relation to it?
Nid wyf i'n gwybod, yw'r ateb plaen—nid wyf i'n gwybod. Rwy'n meddwl, am resymau gwleidyddol, roedd newid Gweinidog a newid polisi a phenderfynu peidio â symud ymlaen gyda gweithredu nifer o adroddiadau a wnaethpwyd ar yr un pryd â'r adroddiad ar y Cwricwlwm Cymreig a hanes Cymru. Roedd adroddiadau eraill wedi cael eu derbyn gan y Gweinidog ar y pryd, a'r bwriad oedd symud ymlaen i ddatblygu cwricwlwm 2008—adolygiad diwethaf y cwricwlwm cenedlaethol presennol, fel petai—ac i adeiladu ar hwnnw a'i ddatblygu yn unol â'r adroddiadau yr oeddem ni wedi'u cael. Ond, fe newidiodd y Gweinidog addysg ac fe benderfynodd y Gweinidog newydd i ofyn i'r Athro Donaldson—ysgolhaig a dyn â phrofiad o lunio cwricwlwm yr Alban hefyd—i lunio adroddiad arall ar gyfer ailstrwythuro'r cwricwlwm yn gyfan gwbl. Roedd hynny'n ehangach o strwythur—o ailstrwythuro—oherwydd roedd e'n mynd i edrych ar bopeth ac nid jest ar agweddau o'r cwricwlwm presennol, ond ar y busnes o asesu a strwythuro'r gyfundrefn addysg ac yn y blaen. Felly, nid wyf i'n gwybod beth oedd y rhesymau'n union, ond yn sicr roedd yna newid agwedd a pholisi rhwng un Gweinidog a'r llall.
I don't know, is the plain answer—I don't know. I think, for political reasons, there was a change of Minister and a change of policy and a decision not to move forward with implementing a number of reports that appeared at the same time as the report on the Cwricwlwm Cymreig and the history of Wales. Other reports were accepted by the Minister at the time and the intention was to move forward and develop the 2008 curriculum—that was the last review of the current national curriculum, as it were—and to move, to build on and develop that in line with the reports that we had. But there was a change of Minister and the new Minister decided to ask Professor Donaldson—a scholar and a gentleman with experience of devising the Scottish curriculum too—to draw up another report on restructuring the curriculum completely. That was a broader restructuring because he was going to look at everything and not just at aspects of the current curriculum, but at assessment and the whole structure of the education system and so on. So, I don't know what the exact reasons were, but there was certainly a change in policy and attitude from one Minister to another.
Anghofiwyd am y gwaith a wnaethoch chi?
Was the work you did forgotten?
Wel, mae'n teimlo fel yna, ydy. Ond, dyna beth yw bywyd a dyna beth yw Llywodraeth. Fe wnaethpwyd yn hollol glir i mi ar y pryd y byddai'r Llywodraeth yn penderfynu gweithredu neu dderbyn neu wrthod yr argymhellion, neu dderbyn neu wrthod yr adroddiad, yn ôl eu penderfyniad nhw. Nhw piau'r penderfyniad, ac mae hynny'n iawn. Maen nhw wedi comisiynu'r gwaith, maen nhw yn ei dderbyn neu beidio. Beth nad ydw i'n deall yw pam cafodd yr adroddiad yr oeddem ni wedi ei lunio fel tasglu ei dderbyn yn gyfan gwbl, ond dim ond darnau ohono fe sydd wedi cael eu gweithredu. I fi, mae darnau allweddol ohono fe wedi cael eu hanghofio. Rwy'n darllen adroddiad Donaldson. Rydych chi wedi gweld, gobeithio, fy sylwadau i ar adroddiad Donaldson, a'r diffyg cyfleoedd mae e'n cymryd i enghreifftio'r persbectif Cymreig ar bethau.FootnoteLink
It feels like that, yes. But that is life and that is what Government is. It was made perfectly clear to me at the time that the Government would decide to implement, accept or reject the recommendations, or accept or reject the report, according to their own decision. They own that decision, and that's right. They've commissioned the work, they are to accept it or not. What I don't understand is why the report that we drew up as a taskforce was accepted in whole, but only pieces of it have been implemented. In my opinion, there are key sections of that report that have been forgotten. I read the Donaldson report. I hope you've seen my comments on the Donaldson report and the lack of opportunities that are there to define the Welsh perspective on issues.
A ydych chi'n gweld tystiolaeth yn adroddiad Donaldson o'ch gwaith chi yn dod drwodd yna yn rhywle?
Do you think evidence is there in the Donaldson report that your work is coming through there somewhere?
Nac ydw. Mae e'n sôn am y dimensiwn Cymreig, ond pan rwy'n darllen yr hyn mae'n ei ddweud abothdu'r celfyddydau mynegiadol, nid yw'n sôn am eisteddfod o gwbl. Roeddwn i'n meddwl bod hynny'n beth ofnadwy yng Nghymru, lle mae'n rhan annatod o'n diwylliant ni a'n hunaniaeth ni.
No, I don't. He talks about the Welsh dimension, but when I read what he says about the expressive arts, he doesn't talk about the eisteddfod at all. I think that is a terrible thing in Wales, where it is an integral part of our culture and our identity.
Felly hyd yn oed wrth ddatblygu cwricwlwm newydd a rhoi cyd-destun newydd i'n cwricwlwm ni, rydych chi'n ofni nad yw'r cyd-destun Cymreig yn ddigon canolog o hyd, a bod hynny'n cael ei adlewyrchu nid yn unig yn yr addysg ynglŷn â hanes Cymru, ond yn gyffredinol ynglŷn â lle mae Cymru yn ffitio i mewn i'r darlun.
So even in developing a new curriculum and a new context for the curriculum, you are concerned that the Welsh context isn't central enough, and that's been reflected not only in education about Welsh history, but generally about where Wales fits into the picture.
Mae'r oedi, mae'r agwedd, mae'r anwybodaeth, rwy'n credu, yn adroddiad Donaldson—yn sicr, nid yw'n cymryd y cyfleoedd sydd gyda fe i roi cyfarwyddyd ac arweiniad clir ar y persbectif Cymreig o fewn, dywedwn ni, astudiaethau lleol. Mae e'n sôn am wneud y ddaearyddiaeth—ffein. Afon leol—grêt. Mae e'n sôn am gerddoriaeth Smetana. Nid yw'n sôn am 'Nant y mynydd groyw loyw yn ymdroelli tua'r pant'. Nid yw'n sôn am bethau amlwg Cymreig. Mae e'n colli'r cyfle, ac felly rwy'n meddwl ei fod e'n tanseilio'r hyn rydym ni wedi bod yn trio ei wneud i greu cwricwlwm addas i Gymru fel gwlad dros y 30 mlynedd diwethaf yma.
The delay, the attitude, the ignorance, I think, in the Donaldson report—certainly, he's not taking the opportunities he has to provide guidance, and clear guidance, on the Welsh perspective within, say, local studies. He talks about geography—fine. A local river—great. And he talks about Smetana's music. He doesn't mention 'Nant y Mynydd groyw loyw yn ymdroelli tua'r pant'. He doesn't mention obvious Welsh elements. He misses an opportunity, and I think he undermines what we've been trying to do to create a curriculum that's suitable for Wales as a country over the last 30 years.
Well, it was the last two weeks of year 11, and the teacher said, 'Oh God, we've got to do Welsh history', and it was just completely rushed, and I walked away.
Dim ond—. Pan—.
Da iawn am drio. Diolch yn fawr.
Well done for trying. Thank you very much.
'Pan gadawais i'.
Pan gadawais i'r ysgol, yn fy marn i, nid oeddwn i'n gallu adnabod hanes Cymru. Roedd yn amhosibl, achos nad oedd yna ddim addysg, mewn gwirionedd, yn hanes.
When I left school, in my opinion, I couldn't acknowledge the history of Wales. It was impossible, because there was no teaching of it, really. There was no teaching of history.
This made me chuckle, actually. I think it sums up the Welsh attitude in some ways—the schizophrenia, almost.
Mae'n flin gyda fi—.
My husband had schizophrenia. Please don't say that lightly, because it's such a dreadful illness. If you're in two minds about something, that's quite different—there's an ambiguity, and a dichotomy.
I understand that. But with respect, I'm making a serious point about the—
But still, I find that use of that—
Diolch yn fawr.
We're told that, in the areas of learning experience, where appropriate, both a Welsh dimension and an international perspective—. So, in Wales, we're told by this expert that, where appropriate, we can have a Welsh dimension. How do you feel about that?
Nid oeddwn i wedi meddwl am hynny, ond rydych chi'n berffaith iawn. Mae wastad yn berthnasol. Dyna'r man cychwyn—dylai fod. Nid oeddwn i wedi meddwl am hynny, felly diolch yn fawr i chi am dynnu fy sylw i at hynny.
I hadn't thought of that, but you're perfectly right. It's always relevant. That's the starting point—it should be. I hadn't thought of that, so thank you very much for drawing my attention to it.
Also, people talk about nationalism and the curriculum, and I absolutely agree, because I think if you look at the curriculum I was taught—I just wonder what you make of this—it was certainly UK nationalism writ large, at the expense of the history of the country that I'm from. So, I just wondered what you made of the idea, and the arguments about nationalism and history on the curriculum.
Wel, dyna ble rydym ni'n dod i mewn i'r cwestiwn o dystiolaeth a dysgu sgiliau hanes. Mae hanes yn cael ei ddefnyddio fel propaganda yn aml iawn, a beth sy'n bwysig yw eich bod chi'n dysgu sgiliau hanesyddol o gasglu, gwerthuso a defnyddio tystiolaeth, fel nad ydych yn derbyn unrhyw osodiad ar drydar neu ar weplyfr a meddwl, 'Wel, maen nhw'n dweud hynny, maen bownd o fod yn wir'. Rydych ch'n meddwl, 'Sut mae profi hynny? Ble mae'r dystiolaeth? Pwy sy'n dweud hynny? Pam maen nhw'n ei ddweud e?'—a chwilio am duedd. Dyna beth rydw i'n ei deimlo. Os ydych chi'n dysgu hanes yn iawn, rydych chi'n rhoi'r sgiliau i ddisgyblion i ddatblygu yn ddinasyddion call sy'n gallu pwyso a mesur.
Well, that's where we get into the question of evidence, and teaching the skills of history. History is used as propaganda quite often, and what's important is that you teach history skills of collecting, analysing and looking at evidence, so that you don't accept any statement on Twitter or on Facebook and think, 'Well, they say that—it's bound to be true'. You think, 'How can you prove that? Where is the evidence? Who says that? Why do they say it?'—looking for bias. That's what I feel. If history is taught correctly, you give skills to pupils to develop as citizens who are wise and who can evaluate and analyse.
Pan oeddwn i yn y chweched dosbarth, nid oedd dysgu am y Natsïaid yn bropaganda; roedd o'n gwneud i ni—. Jest achos ein bod ni'n dysgu amdano fo, nid oedd o'n gwneud i ni deimlo, 'O, rydym ni eisiau dilyn y rhain'—roedd o jest yn gwneud i ni gwestiynu pam roedden nhw wedi gwneud y pethau yma. Sut fedrwn ni stopio hyn yn y dyfodol? A jest gweld sut roedd strwythur y sefyllfa wedi arwain at bethau fel hynny. Wedyn, os ydych chi'n cael pob agwedd ar hanes Cymru o dan y chwyddwydr, mae'n bwysig edrych ar bob peth o dan y chwyddwydr yna. Mae'n gadael i chi wedyn gwestiynu pob peth ac edrych arno fo mewn ffordd wahanol sydd ddim yn eich rhoi chi mewn i ffordd gul o edrych ar rywbeth.
When I was in the sixth form, learning about the Nazis wasn't exactly propaganda. Just because we were learning about it, it didn't make us feel, 'Oh, we want to follow these'—it just made us question why they did those things. How can we stop that happening again in the future? And seeing how the structure of the situation had led to things like that. So, if you have seen every element of the history of Wales under the magnifying glass, it's important to look at everything under that magnifying glass, because it lets you then question everything and look at it in a different way that isn't putting you in any narrow way of thinking.
Do you think there's a problem with the facts of history that were taught? Because when I left school I didn't know Wales had a royal family. I didn't know the royal family had been murdered by conquerors. Owain Glyndŵr was a pub as far as I was concerned—it wasn't this great visionary, this great figure in Welsh history. What I find frustrating—and I wonder whether you do—is that this should be the norm. Everybody should know our history. So, a simple question: what should happen next?
Byddai fe'n rhwydd i dweud, 'Newidiwch y ddeddf'. Efallai bod Elfed eisiau dweud hynny. Rydw i'n gwybod bod yna fodd i osgoi'r ddeddf. Roeddwn i'n ysgrifennu'r gorchymyn, roeddwn i'n ysgrifennu’r gwaith statudol am flynyddoedd, ac roeddwn i'n mynd i mewn i ysgolion ac roeddwn i'n gweld pobl yn ei gamddeall e, yn ei gamddehongli e, ddim yn gwybod amdano fe. Ac wedyn, rydw i'n teimlo nad, efallai, deddfu yw'r peth, ond dathlu yn hytrach na deddfu—dweud bod gyda ni hanes ffantastig yng Nghymru, ein hanes ni ein hunain. Mae gyda ni iaith a diwylliant sy'n fonws i ni yng Nghymru. Mae gyda ni rywbeth sy'n wahanol, sy'n haeddu cael ei ddathlu.
Mae gyda ni yng Nghymru gystadleuaeth flynyddol, sef menter ysgolion y dreftadaeth Gymreig. Mae'n cael ei chynnal ers 20 mlynedd. Sefydlwyd y gystadleuaeth gan ffoadures o Wlad Pwyl, menyw a ddatblygodd wedyn yn Fonesig Trotman-Dickenson. Mae hi wedi sefydlu'r syniad yma o gystadleuaeth. Mae'n cael ei chynnal bob blwyddyn, rydw i ar y pwyllgor ac mae'n gwobrwyo gwaith da mewn hanes lleol a hanes Cymru yn flynyddol. Rydw i'n teimlo y gallech chi, fel Cynulliad, wneud llawer mwy o hyn. Fel pwyllgor, rydym ni'n rhan o fframwaith Ewropeaidd a thu hwnt—mae Israel yn rhan o'r fframwaith hefyd—sy'n cynnal cystadlaethau cenedlaethol mewn hanes a dinasyddiaeth weithiau. Ac mae'n gwobrwyo gwaith da ac yn dathlu gwaith da, a'i roi o flaen y cyhoedd fel esiampl o'r hyn y gellir ei wneud fel y gellir ysbrydoli ysgolion i fod eisiau dysgu mwy o hanes sydd wedi'i wreiddio yn eu tir nhw eu hunain ac yn rhoi cyfle iddyn nhw bwyso a mesur tystiolaeth.
It would be easy to say, 'Change the law'. Maybe Elfed wants to say that. But I know that there is a way of avoiding the legislation. I wrote the statutory work and the orders for years, and I would go into schools and I would see people misunderstanding it and misinterpreting it and not knowing anything about it. And so, I feel that legislation, perhaps, is not the issue, but celebrating rather than legislating—saying that we have a fantastic history in Wales, our own history and we have a language and culture that is a bonus to us in Wales. We have something that is different, that deserves to be celebrated.
We have in Wales an annual competition—the Welsh schools' heritage initiative. It has been held for 20 years. It was established by a refugee from Poland, a woman who then became Dame Trotman-Dickenson. She has established this idea of a competition. It's held every year, I'm on the committee and it provides awards for good work in local history and the history of Wales. And I think you, as an Assembly, could do much more about this. As a committee, we are part of the European framework and beyond—Israel is part of the framework as well—that hosts competitions on a national level in history and citizenship at times. It rewards good work and celebrates good work, and puts it at the forefront in the public eye as an example of what can be done, what can inspire schools to want to learn more about the history that is based in their own land and gives them the opportunity to evaluate and analyse evidence.
Mae yna gymaint o bethau y buaswn ni'n gallu eu dysgu ar hanes Cymru—mae o mor gyfoethog. Un enghraifft ydy deddfau Hywel Dda. Rydw i'n cofio clywed am hynny, am y deddfau yma, pan oeddwn i'n rhyw naw oed, ac mi wnaeth o fy sbarduno i feddwl, 'Beth arall sy'n ddiddorol yng Nghymru? Beth arall ydym ni'n colli allan arno yn ein hanes ni?' O Gymoedd y de, yr holl ffordd i Ynys Môn yn fanna, mae yna rywbeth sy'n perthyn i bob ardal. Buaswn i wedi bod wrth fy modd yn dysgu mwy am y pyllau glo a'r digwyddiadau yn yr 1980au gyda chau'r pyllau glo. Er fy mod i'n byw yn Nhrawsfynydd, mae o'n dal yn rhan o'n hanes ni—fy hanes i hefyd, achos rydym ni i gyd yn cael ein plethu i mewn i'r wlad yma ac wedyn mae beth sy'n digwydd yn y de yn effeithio ar y gogledd ac rydym ni i gyd yn un wlad yn y diwedd. Mae yna gymaint o bynciau y buasem ni'n gallu eu dysgu, jest mae eisiau ffeindio'r ffordd iawn i blethu nhw i gyd efo'i gilydd, ac hefyd, wrth gwrs, i gael y sgôp o Gymru yn y byd, a Chymru o fewn Prydain ac Ewrop. Buaswn ni'n gallu dangos i'n cenhedloedd ifanc bod Cymru yn wlad sydd wedi chwarae rhan fawr yn hanes y byd, a bod y bobl sydd wedi dod i'n gwlad ni i fyw, eu bod nhw wedi cyfoethogi'n hanes ni hefyd. Mae gennyf fi obaith bod hwn yn mynd i ddechrau rhywbeth andros o dda efo dysgu hanes Cymru.
There are so many things that we could teach about the history of Wales—it's so rich. For example, the Hywel Dda laws. I remember hearing about that, about these laws, when I was about nine years old and it inspired me to think, 'What else is interesting about Wales? What else are we missing out on in Welsh history?' From the south Wales Valleys to Anglesey, it belongs to each area. I would have loved to learn more about the coal mines and the events of the 1980s with the closures of the coal mines. It's part of our history and it's all intertwined with this country. What happens in the south affects the north and it's all one country. There are so many subjects that we could learn, we just need to find the right way to intertwine them, and to have the scope of Wales in the world, and Wales within the UK and Europe. We could show our younger generations that Wales is a country that has played a very large part in the history of the world, and that the people who have come to our country to live, that they've enriched our history also. I have hope that this is going to start something really good about teaching Welsh history.
Just two quick questions. I go back to what Elfed said earlier. You're absolutely right that reading Aneirin and Taliesin and studying Hedd Wyn at A-level Welsh tells you more about Welsh history than studying history A-level. Isn't there something wrong with that? Because unless you'd studied Welsh, you don't get the same depth of knowledge of the history of Wales.
And the second question is, and this is really for Dr Jones: would you agree with me that we ought to at least think about going back to GCSE social and economic history, as opposed to this idea of studying parts of the world in short periods without any context?
Rwy'n cytuno 100 y cant gyda chi. Mae eisiau cael yr ystod hir o hanes i weld datblygiadau, i weld eich rhan chi yn hanes. Rwy'n meddwl bod eisiau ffeindio mas pam nad yw hynny—. Mae eisiau ffeindio mas yn gyntaf os nad yw hynny ddim yn cael ei wneud. Mae eisiau i chi ddangos yn glir nad yw e ddim yn cael ei wneud. Mae'r ymchwil rydym ni wedi ei wneud fel tasglu yn awgrymu hynny. Mae ymchwil a wnaethpwyd 20 mlynedd yn ôl gan Dr Sian Rhiannon Williams hefyd yn awgrymu mai dim ond traean o ysgolion sy'n dysgu hanes Cymru yn iawn, ond nid oes tystiolaeth gyda ni. Os nad yw e'n cael ei wneud, pam nad yw e'n cael ei wneud? Beth yw'r anhawster? Rwy'n meddwl bod y pwyslais ar ganlyniadau a'r elfen gystadleuol rhwng ysgolion yn cael effaith ar hynny.
Rwy'n gwybod yn weddol sicr nad yw hanes Cymru, fel y cyfryw, ddim wedi'i integreiddio i hanes, ac nad yw'n cael ei wneud mewn ysgolion Cymraeg chwaith, ac mae rhai disgyblion yr ysgolion hynny wedi dweud wrthyf fi, fel Elfed, mai trwy wneud y Gymraeg i lefel A a TGAU yr oedden nhw wedi clywed am bethau fel barddoniaeth gynnar a pheth o'r hanes. Ac mae hynny yn rhoi gormod o lawer o bwysau ar athrawon y Gymraeg. Ac un agwedd yn adroddiad Donaldson sy'n becso fi yw ei fod e fel petai e'n cyfyngu dysgu am ddiwylliant Cymru i wersi iaith Gymraeg, ac mae hynny'n rhoi gormod o gyfrifoldeb.
I agree 100 per cent with you. There is a need to have that long range of history, to see the developments and to see your part in history. I think we need to find out why that isn't—. We need to find out first of all if that's not happening. You need to show clearly that that's not happening. The research that we've conducted as a taskforce suggests that. Research conducted 20 years ago by Dr Sian Rhiannon Williams also suggests that only a third of schools teach Welsh history correctly, but there is no evidence. If it's not being done, why isn't it being done? What are the difficulties? I think the emphasis on results and that competitive element between schools has an impact on that.
I'm quite sure that the history of Wales, as a whole, isn't integrated into history, and isn't being done in Welsh-medium schools either, and some pupils in those schools have told me, the same as Elfed, that it was by studying Welsh at GCSE and A-level that they heard of things such as the early poetry and some of the history. And that puts too much pressure on teachers of Welsh. And there is one aspect of the Donaldson report that concerns me, which is that it's as if he restricts the teaching about Welsh culture to Welsh-language lessons, and that places too much responsibility on those teachers.
Perhaps I should have said that my daughter went to Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bryn Tawe. So, my discussion of history is history in a Welsh-medium school, as opposed to generally.
I've got one final question on this. Do you ever consider that, even though we study history, and at GCSE they study Germany, for example, that it didn't start with Bismarck and the unification of Germany? Because it was the unification of Germany and the lack of German parts of the world that they had under their empire that led directly to the first world war, and the first world war then led to the second world war. So, it's this idea that you're looking at chunks of history out of context, and I think that there's a lack of—. And they look at the American civil rights movement without looking at slavery. Everything seems to be dealt with out of context. They look at South Africa, but they look at South Africa from the 1920s and 1930s. They don't look at it from the British and the Boers and why that happened. It's all sort of lacking in context. It's just taking a snapshot of history and then studying that. It's easy to write examination questions, easy to write good examination answers, but you don't actually know anything apart from that little snapshot, and how you got there and what happened afterwards seems to be lost. Do you think that's a problem?
Ydw, rwy'n meddwl hynny yn gyfan gwbl. Mae hen ddywediad ymhlith byd yr amgueddfeydd, sef 'Look for the "me" in museum', ac rwy'n meddwl bod angen edrych am yr 'I' yn history. Beth rydych chi'n ei wneud gyda 'hanes', nid wyf yn gwybod. Ond maen rhaid i chi edrych am y personol a'r perthnasol, a gweld yr hanes eang. O ran yr Almaen, byddwn i'n mynd â chi yn ôl i Charlemagne a rhaniad ymerodraeth Charlemagne, ond y tro nesaf fydd hynny, siŵr o fod.
Yes, I think that completely. There is an old saying in the world of museums, namely 'Look for the "me" in museum', and I think you need to look for the 'I' in history. But you have to look at the personal and the relevant, and see the broader history. In terms of Germany, I would take you back to Charlemagne and the division of Charlemagne's empire, but that's for next time, probably.
Efo hanes Cymru hefyd, os ydym ni'n torri rhai darnau allan, rydym ni'n gweld nad ydym ni'n cael y darlun llawn, ac mae rhai pethau sydd ddim yn gwneud synnwyr wedyn. Felly, mae'n bwysig ein bod ni'n edrych ar hanes Cymru, o hyd yn oed cyfnod y Rhufeiniaid—neu cyn hynny, cyfnod y Celtiaid, dywedwch—ymlaen, ac rydym ni'n gweld sut rydym ni wedi datblygu i fod yn wlad, ac wedyn datblygu'r Undeb Brydeinig. A lle rydym ni heddiw—rydym ni wedi datblygu Senedd. Dyna yw'r peth: nid yw pobl yn dallt pam bod gennym ni Senedd yng Nghaerdydd. Maen nhw'n cwestiynu—'O, mae'r adeilad yma jest wedi glanio yma yn 1997'—ond os ydyn nhw'n gwybod yr hanes tu ôl i'r adeilad yma, yr hanes tu ôl i'r iaith, yr hanes y tu ôl i bob peth, eu cymunedau nhw—rydw i'n mynd i bwysleisio hynny eto ac eto—mae rhywun yn tyfu i werthfawrogi ac i ddeall pwysigrwydd y sefydliadau a'r agweddau yma wedyn.
With the history of Wales as well, if we cut some pieces out, we don't get the full picture, and some things don't make sense then. So, it's important that we look at the history of Wales, even from Roman times, or before then, to the Celts even, and see how we've developed to be a country, and then the development of the British Union. And where we are today—we've developed a Parliament. And that's the thing: people don't understand why we have a Parliament in Cardiff. They question— 'Oh, this building just landed here in 1997'—but if they had the history behind this building, behind the language, the history behind everything, their communities—and I'm going to emphasise that time and time again—they'd grow to appreciate and understand the importance of these organisations and these aspects then.
A liciwn i ychwanegu un peth hefyd: o astudio hanes Cymru, nid yw'n fêl i gyd. Rŷch chi'n gweld bod e'n wych neu'n wael neu'n gymysg oll i gyd. Mae yna bobl sydd wedi bod yn berchen ar gaethweision. Mae yna fachgen, Nathaniel Wells, ddaeth i Piercefield. Roedd yn fachgen du ac fe etifeddodd e ystâd yng Ngwent. Roedd ei fam e'n gaethferch. Rŷm ni'n gweld ein bod ni wedi bod yn ymladd ar ochr yr Ymerodraeth Brydeinig. Rydym ni wedi bod yn ymladd yn erbyn yr Ymerodraeth Brydeinig. Mae gyda ni arwyr. Mae gyda ni arwresau, ac mae gyda ni ddihirod. Ac mae dysgu am eu hanes nhw, yn eu cymhlethdod a'u bywiogrwydd, yn ein helpu ni i ddysgu mwy am ein hunain a fel yr ŷm ni wedi cyrraedd ble yr ŷm ni. Ond rwy'n meddwl bod—mae'n bwysig iawn nid i jest edrych ar yr ochr bert.
And I would like to add one thing as well: from studying the history of Wales, it's not all sweet. You see that it's good or bad or mixed. There are people who have had slaves. There is Nathaniel Wells, who came to Piercefield. He was a black boy and he inherited an estate in Gwent. His mother was a slave. We see that we've been fighting on the side of the British Empire. We've been fighting against the British Empire. We have heroes and heroines. And we have those who are villains. And learning about their history and their complexities helps us to learn more about ourselves and where we've reached. But I think it's important not just to look at the pretty aspect of history.
I agree. I live in Abertawe dwyrain, and we've had a long industrial history, some of which has been exceptionally cruel to my ancestors.
Thank you. How adequately does Successful Futures provide a definition of history and the history of Wales, or at least a foundation for how it could be subsequently defined?
Rydych chi'n gofyn hwn i fi. Siŵr. Nid wyf yn credu—. Cofiwch chi nawr, nid ydym ni'n siarad am hanes fel pwnc dim ragor o dan yr Athro Donaldson. Yn yr adroddiad yna, rydym ni'n siarad am y dyniaethau, ac mae hynny'n cynnwys daearyddiaeth, hanes, addysg grefyddol, cymdeithaseg, os rwy'n cofio'n iawn, ac economeg. Maen nhw wedi plethu mewn i'w gilydd. Felly, nid yw Donaldson yn gosod sylfaen o gwbl i ddysgu hanes Cymru fel y cyfryw. Mae e'n gosod sylfaen i ddysgu'r dyniaethau. Ond rwyf i wedi dysgu'r dyniaethau fy hunan rhyw 40 mlynedd yn ôl ac nid oeddwn i'n ffeindio fy mod i'n gallu llwyddo i gyfleu y pynciau yna'n effeithiol, er mae athrawon cynradd yn gwneud hynny yn wych yn aml iawn.
Felly, rwy'n teimlo nad yw Donaldson yn rhoi arweiniad ar fel yr ŷch chi'n integreiddio'r elfen leol a'r elfen Gymreig i fewn i'r dyniaethau. Os darllenwch chi y rhan honno o'r adroddiad, nid oes arweiniad ar hanes o gwbl, ac mae hynny'n ddiffyg mawr yn yr adroddiad, oherwydd dyma un o destunau llosg Cymru ar hyn o bryd, fel yr ŷm ni'n gweld oddi wrth yr ymateb i ddeiseb Elfed, ac oddi wrth yr ymateb pan oeddwn i'n ymgynghori ar hwn hefyd. Nid yw'n mynd i ffwrdd. Mae e yn rhan o'r drafodaeth wleidyddol, ac rwy'n meddwl bod nhw wedi colli cyfle pan oedden nhw’n llunio adroddiad Donaldson i beidio â rhoi arweiniad llawer cliriach ynddo fe.
You're asking me this. Fine. I don't think—. Bear in mind that we're not talking about history as a subject under Professor Donaldson. In that report, we're talking about the humanities, and that includes geography, history, religious education, sociology, if I remember rightly, and economics. They're all intertwined. And, therefore, Donaldson doesn't provide a basis for teaching the history of Wales as such. It provides a basis to teach humanities. But I have taught humanities myself about 40 years ago, and I didn't find that I was succeeding to convey those subjects effectively, although primary school teachers very often do that in an excellent manner.
So, I feel that Donaldson doesn't provide the guidance on how you integrate the local element and the Welsh element into the humanities. If you read that part of the report, there is no guidance on history at all, and that is a great deficiency, because this is one of the very controversial subjects in Wales, as we see from the response to Elfed's petition, and from the response to when I was consulting on this as well. It's not going to go away. It is part of the political discussion, and I think they've missed an opportunity when they were drawing up the Donaldson report not to provide much clearer guidance on this.
Nid oes gen i ddim byd i'w ychwanegu, a dweud y gwir.
Well, I have nothing to add, really.
Dyna ni. Diolch yn fawr, Elfed.
There we go. Thank you very much, Elfed.
And to what extent are you confident, moving forward, that history will be presented and taught in the way that you would wish?
Nid oes dim hyder gyda fi yn hynny o gwbl—dim o gwbl. Rwyf i wedi gweld peth o'r gwaith sydd yn cael ei wneud, ac mae'r athrawon sydd yn gweithio ar y cwricwlwm ar hyn o bryd, a'r gweision sifil sydd gyda nhw—maen nhw'n gwneud eu gorau. Ond heb arweiniad clir a phendant, heb enghreifftiau arfer da, heb dystiolaeth, maen nhw yn y tywyllwch, ac nid wyf i'n gwybod a fyddan nhw damaid callach pan fyddan nhw'n cwpla hwn o ran sut mae dysgu hanes. Nid oes tystiolaeth gyda ni bod hanes wedi cael ei ddysgu fel y mae rhai ohonoch chi yn amlwg, a ni'n dau yn sicr, yn teimlo dylai fe gael ei ddysgu. Nid oes tystiolaeth bod hynny wedi cael ei wneud o dan gwricwlwm oedd yn rhoi arweiniad clir. Felly, nid wyf i'n hyderus o gwbl y bydd y datblygiadau presennol, o dan adroddiad sydd ddim yn rhoi arweiniad clir, damaid yn well, gwaetha'r modd.
I have no confidence in that at all—none at all. I have seen some of the work that's been done, and the teachers who are working on the curriculum at the moment, and the civil servants with them—they are doing their best. But without clear guidance, and without examples of good practice, and without evidence, they're in the dark, and I don't know whether they'll be any the wiser when they finish this in terms of how to teach history. There is no evidence that history has been taught as some of you clearly, and both of us certainly, feel that it should be taught. There's no evidence that that has been done under a curriculum that gave clear guidance. So, I'm not confident at all that the current developments, under a report that doesn't provide clear guidance, will be any better, unfortunately.
Mae angen diwygio'r drefn eto, rwy'n meddwl, ac angen mynd yn bellach, ond, eto, nid ydw i'n gwybod faint o amser buasai hwnnw'n ei gymryd. Hwyrach, byddai'n cymryd rhyw 10 mlynedd arall. Hwyrach, y byddaf i'n eistedd yn fan yma mewn 10 mlynedd arall, yn ailadrodd yr un peth.
We need to reform the system again, I think, and to go further, but, again, I don't know how much time it's going to take. Perhaps it will take another 10 years. Maybe I'll be sitting here in 10 years' time, saying the same thing.
Ac nid yw deddfu'n ateb pethau. Rŷm ni wedi deddfu ers 30 mlynedd ac rydym ni'n dal i feddwl—. Mae dal cwynion am yr hyn sy'n digwydd, er gwaethaf cwricwlwm pendant.
And legislating isn't always the answer. We've legislated for 30 years and we still think—. There are still complaints about what's happening, despite a specific curriculum.
Thanks, Rhun. In a nutshell, do you need stronger leadership from this Welsh Government to pursue an agenda of change?
Rwy'n teimlo eich bod chi eisiau arweiniad cliriach a phendant amboutu pwysigrwydd hanes i bobl Cymru. Nid yw'n fater i grŵp bach o eithafwyr; mae nifer o bobl ledled Cymru—. Es i mas i lyfrgelloedd cyhoeddus i siarad gyda phobl pan oeddwn i'n paratoi'r adroddiad yma, ac roedd cymaint ohonyn nhw yn dweud, fel y mae rhai ohonoch chi wedi'i ddweud: 'Wnes i ddim hanes Cymru; rwy'n teimlo fy mod i wedi colli rhywbeth.' Mae eisiau cydnabod hynny gan y Llywodraeth ac mae eisiau iddyn nhw roi arweiniad llawer cliriach ar rôl hanes Cymru yng Nghymru. Mae eisiau iddyn nhw ffeindio mas beth yn union sy'n digwydd a pham nad yw athrawon yn dysgu'r cwricwlwm presennol o ran hanes Cymru a hanes lleol, a pham maen nhw'n osgoi gwneud hynny. Mae eisiau tystiolaeth ac wedyn rwy'n teimlo bod eisiau dathlu cliriach gan y Llywodraeth o'r arfer da sydd yna. Rwyf i newydd ddod o bwyllgor lle roeddem ni'n trafod y gwobrau blynyddol yma ac roedd peth o'r gwaith yr oedd yn cael ei wneud yn ffantastig. Roedd yr ysgolion yn trafod eu hanes lleol nhw mewn cyd-destun ehangach, gan ddefnyddio'r dechnoleg ddigidol ddiweddaraf, ac roedd e'n grêt.
I feel that you need clearer leadership about the importance of history to the people of Wales. It's not a matter for a small group of extremists; there are a number of people across Wales—. I went out to public libraries to talk to people when I was preparing this report, and so many people told me, just as some of you have said, 'I didn't do Welsh history; I feel that I've missed out on something.' There is a need to acknowledge that from the Government and there is a need to provide much clearer leadership on the role of Welsh history in Wales. They need to find out what exactly is happening and why teachers aren't teaching the current curriculum in terms of local history and Welsh history, and why they avoid doing that. There is a need for evidence and then I feel that there needs to be clearer celebration from the Government of the good practice that exists. I've just come from a committee where we were discussing these annual awards and some of that work was fantastic. The schools were discussing their local history in a wider context, using the latest digital technology, and it was great.
Pan oeddwn i'n mynd rownd efo'r ddeiseb, roeddwn i'n casglu ar bapur ac ar y we, felly roeddwn i'n ei rhannu ar y we a jest yn mynd rownd yn hel enwau. Buaswn i'n dweud bod dros hanner y bobl yr oeddwn i wedi casglu eu henwau nhw ddim yn genedlaetholwyr—roedden nhw jest yn bobl a oedd yn dweud, 'Nid ydw i wedi cael dysgu fy hanes fy hun.' Roeddwn i'n siarad â phobl o gwmpas ardaloedd y gogledd, ac, hyd yn oed pobl yn fy mhentref fy hun, nid oedden nhw hyd yn oed yn deall hanes Hedd Wyn yn iawn. Roedd hynny'n ddigalon.
When I was going around with this petition, I was collecting on paper and online, so I was sharing it online and just going around collecting names. I'd say that almost half the people we collected names from weren't nationalists—they were just people who were saying, 'I haven't learnt my own history.' I was talking to people in north Wales and, even in my own village, they didn't understand the history of Hedd Wyn properly. So, that was very disheartening.
Mae'r ysgolion cynradd wedi gwneud gwaith gwych ar Hedd Wyn dros y blynyddoedd.
Primary schools have done excellent work on Hedd Wyn over the years.
Do, chwarae teg, ond y genhedlaeth hŷn, yn anffodus, oedd heb gael—. Roedd yn fy synnu i achos roedden nhw'n dweud, 'Dydw i'n dal ddim yn gwybod beth sydd wedi digwydd yn Yr Ysgwrn; mae yna lot o ddatblygiadau mawr ac nid ydw i'n gwybod pam. Rydw i jest yn ei weld e bob bore ac nid ydw i'n ei ddallt.' Dyna pam roedden nhw'n arwyddo'r ddeiseb yma wedyn. Mae jest yn agoriad llygad i'r awch sydd yna i wybod hanes ein hunain a'r pwysigrwydd sydd yna i bawb cael y cyfle i wybod hynny.
Rydw i eisiau diolch hefyd i Dafydd Thomas ac Anwen Jones—dau a oedd wedi bod yn weithgar iawn efo'r ddeiseb, felly roeddwn i'n meddwl buaswn i jest yn eu cydnabod nhw. A Siân Teleri Jones, fy chwaer. Rydw i wedi gaddo ddweud pen-blwydd hapus iddi hi, gyda llaw.
Yes, fair play, but the older generation, unfortunately, didn't get—. I was surprised because they were saying, 'I still don't know what's happened in the Ysgwrn; there are so many developments and I don't know why. I see just it every morning; I still don't understand it'. That's why they were signing this petition. It's just been an eye-opener to the desire that people have to learn their own history and the importance of everyone being given the opportunity to know that.
I want to thank Dafydd Thomas also and Anwen Jones—they were just two people who've been very active with this petition, so I just wanted to acknowledge them. And Siân Teleri Jones, my sister. I promised I'd say happy birthday to her, as well.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Nid wyt ti'n mynd i fod yn y bad books, gobeithio, ar ôl hynny. [Chwerthin.]
Thank you very much. You're not going to be in her bad books, hopefully, after that. [Laughter.]
Bydd e'n cael mynd tua thref heno.
He can go home tonight.
Mae o'n bwynt diddorol a rydw i'n meddwl bod yna wleidyddiaeth yn chwarae mewn i fan hyn. Bydd yn ddiddorol sut mae'r cyfieithiad i hwn yn gweithio, ond rwyt ti'n dweud bod hanner y bobl wnes ti siarad â nhw, nad oedden nhw'n genedlaetholwyr. Mae yna gyfieithiad i 'genedlaetholwyr' sy'n swnio'n air gwahanol iawn yn Saesneg nag ydy o yn Gymraeg. I fi, fel cenedlaetholwr, Cymru ydy fy nghenedl i; Cymru ydy fy nghyd-destun i. Mae cenedlaetholdeb yn golygu rhywbeth gwahanol, ond rydw i'n ofni fod pobl yn meddwl am hynny wrth drio cadw'r genedl allan o'n hanes ni. Ar ddiwedd y dydd, mae angen ewyllys gwleidyddol ar draws bob plaid, p'un ai a ydyn nhw'n bleidiau unolaethol neu genedlaetholgar wrth inni dyfu ein cenedl ni, ac rydw i'n siŵr y buasech chi'n cytuno.
It's an interesting point and I think politics does play into this. It will be interesting how the translation works on this, but you say that half of the people whom you spoke to weren't nationalists. There is a translation of 'cendlaetholwyr', nationalists—it sounds a very different word in English to what it is in Welsh. To me, as a nationalist, Wales is my nation; Wales is my context. Nationalism means something else, and I'm worried that people are thinking about that in trying to keep the nation out of our history. At the end of the day, there is a need for political will across every party, whether they are nationalist parties or unionist parties, and I'm sure you'd agree.
Oes, ac mae angen y sgiliau hanesyddol hefyd. Rwy'n teimlo eu bod nhw'n bwysig iawn neu, fel arall, rŷm ni'n dysgu propaganda ac nid ydw i eisiau gwneud hynny o gwbl.
Yes, and we need those historical skills too. I feel they're very important, otherwise we're teaching propaganda, and I don't want to do that at all.
Mae'n rhaid i ni ddeall bod hanes yn rhywbeth niwtral. Fedrith pleidiau gwleidyddol ddim frwydro dros hanes, achos mae hanes yn rhywbeth sydd wedi digwydd—mae jest yno i gael ei ddehongli; nid yw fel arf.
We have to understand that history is something neutral. It's something that political parties can't argue over, because history is just something that's happened—it's just there to be interpreted; it's not a weapon.
Just a comment, really. Everybody is a nationalist; it just depends which country you identify with, really, and every political party in this Assembly is a nationalist party; it just depends whether it's Welsh or UK nationalist.
Hoffwn i ddweud diolch o galon am wneud y deiseb. Mae mor bwysig.
I'd like to say thank you very much for bringing this petition forward. It's so important.
Because, if you want to destroy a country, you take away the language and you take away the history.
Ac mae'n rhaid inni gofio hanes Cymru, yn bendant. Wedyn, diolch.
And we have to remember the history of Wales, certainly. So, thank you very much.
Diolch yn fawr iawn ichi. Ond ei gofio fe'n iawn ac yn gytbwys—y drwg a'r da, cofiwch, y drwg a'r da. A'i bod hi'n hwyl, ei bod hi'n sbort, ei bod hi'n ddifyr. Ie.
Thank you very much. But keep it balanced—the good and the bad, remember, the good and the bad. And make it fun, make it interesting. Yes.
Absolutely. I must admit in my closing comments that we seem to have gone back since my age in school and, actually, that's history in itself, of course, at my age. We were taught many things through the context of Welsh history. I remember the Tolpuddle martyrs, the chartists, and even agrarian reform was taught with a background of Welshness in that.
The other thing I think the committee will be disappointed to hear is that they have not really taken up many of your recommendations—or not acted upon the recommendations—in what was an excellent report of the task and finish group, and that's regrettable. Hopefully, part of this petition and its effect will be it will wake up the Welsh Government to perhaps look at it again and go forward on that.
So, diolch yn fawr. Thank you very much for your contributions—very much appreciated. I did ask at the beginning of this that you be succinct with your answers. You have been, so I'm very grateful for that. It means that we're finishing at a respectable time. So, thank you very much for that. You will, of course, get a transcript of this whole session. Again, thank you for your attendance—much obliged. Thank you.
Diolch yn fawr. Diolch yn fawr iawn ichi.
Thank you. Thank you very much.
Diolch o galon.
Thank you very much.
bod y pwyllgor yn penderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.42(vi).
that the committee resolves to exclude the public from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 17.42(vi).
Cynigiwyd y cynnig.
I'd like to propose, in accordance with Standing Order 17.42, that the committee resolves to meet in private for the remainder of today's meeting. Are we happy with that? Yes. Fine. Thank you.
Derbyniwyd y cynnig.
Daeth rhan gyhoeddus y cyfarfod i ben am 10:53.
The public part of the meeting ended at 10:53.
Yr oedd Dr Elin Jones wedi bwriadu dweud: 'Nid yw'n cymryd y cyfleoedd sydd yno i enghreifftio'r persbectif Cymreig.'
Dr Elin Jones intended to say: 'He did not take advantage of the opportunities that are there to define the Welsh perspective.'