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First Dual-Stream language primary school in Cardiff opens to pupils

One of Cardiff’s newest primary schools has opened its doors for the very first time this week, as staff and pupils arrived for the start of term at the brand-new Ysgol Gynradd Groes-wen Primary School at Plasdŵr.

The £9million primary school is the first of its kind for Cardiff and for Wales, providing a dual language stream and a Welsh-medium stream.  The dual language stream will consist of 50% Welsh and 50% English, known as a 50/50 split.  In addition, there is a 96 part-time nursery provision which is supported by a Clych Meithrin to offer wrap around provision. The Clych will also operate an afterschool club for pupils.

Located within Cardiff’s Plasdŵr development in north west Cardiff ,on land South of Llantrisant Road, Ysgol Gynradd Groes-wen Primary School, built by Andrew Scott Ltd, is one of two new schools to open this week, delivered as part of Cardiff’s Local Development Plan (LDP), in partnership with Redrow.

The other brand-new school that has now opened its doors to pupils, is the£6 millionSt Mellons CIW Primary School, located at the St Edeyrns development, which has relocated from its former site in Llanrumney.

Ysgol Gynradd Groes-wen Primary Schoolis two form of entry and offers 420 places in totalwill serve areas of north-west Cardiff andfeatures contemporary architecture and a range of amenities accessible to the public, providing opportunities to bring new residents and families together.

Cardiff Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Education, Cllr Sarah Merry said: “This is an exciting milestone for the local area and the whole of Cardiff.Ysgol Gynradd Groes-wen Primary Schoolis an innovative variation on the traditional primary school, and willdelivernew and exciting opportunities through the introduction of the dual language model which looks to increaseWelsh-medium education in a strategic way.

“SupportingCardiff’s aspirations to grow the Welsh language as set out in our bilingual strategy, the new school will helpdevelop bilingualism, in a new modern learning environment,ensuring that children and young people receive the best possible education.”

“Plasdŵr is already very popular, generating a significant increase in the demand for school places in the area. The new school will have a community focus providing opportunities for local people to access facilities as well ensuring availability of school places.”

Richard Carbis, Headteacher: “To open a new school is always a privilege but to open one in a new area of Cardiff with an opportunity to become the focus of the community is unique.  At the heart of our work will be the Welsh language as we develop Welsh speakers to share their skills across Plasdŵr. The Welsh-medium stream will provide a fully immersive opportunity to develop the language skills of the pupils. Our dual language model has been created through research and we look forward to being the first school to have the opportunity of providing a new choice to parents. Another new feature, is the opportunity for any child to transfer to the Welsh-medium stream if that is the wish of the parents and the pupil.

“Ultimately, we want to put our vision in action, by providing a warm and welcoming community that develops enterprising linguists in an inclusive and sustainable environment.

“All the staff are excited to open the doors for the first time to pupils and to say with a smile and warmth in our hearts, CROESO I YSGOL GYNRADD GROES-WEN PRIMARY SCHOOL!”

Plasdŵr is a new development of up to7,000 homes that will be built at the site bordering Radyr, Fairwater, Pentrebane and St Fagans along with shops, cafes, restaurants and offices.The masterplan for Plasdŵr includes a further three new primary schools and one secondary school, to be delivered as the development takes shape over the next 20+ years.

Wayne Rees is the Project Director for Plasdŵr. He said: “It is fantastic to see the first primary school at Plasdŵr open its doors for the first time. This is a hugely significant moment in the development of Plasdŵr, and we would like to extend a warm welcome to all the new pupils, parents and teachers starting here today.

“Our vision forPlasdŵris to create a vibrant and sustainable community where people can live, learn, work and play. Learning is a central pillar ofPlasdŵr, and Ysgol Gynradd Groes-wen is just the first of several new schools planned for the development, offering a high-quality education forboth residents and those living in nearby neighbouring communities within easy travelling distance of their homes. It is also the first community space to be completed atPlasdŵr, and we are looking forward to seeing it become a central hub at the heart of this new community.”

The school has beendelivered byPlasdŵr’s leaddeveloper Redrow, under a Section 106 agreement, and is in addition to the new and expanded schools being delivered by Cardiff Council and Welsh Government under its £284m Band B Sustainable Communities for Learning Programme.