Last week, the Welsh Government brought in some changes to the new Additional Learning Needs (ALN) system being used by schools across Flintshire which will hopefully help educators to implement the changeover from the old Special Educational Needs (SEN) system. The Welsh Government has pledged a further £12m to enable councils to extend the changeover period by a year, giving schools more time to put the correct support in place for vulnerable learners.
ALN funding is a vital part of school budgets, especially in smaller rural primary schools, and this approach will not only help schools to manage their budgets in the a longer term but it also goes some way to help vulnerable children recover from the Covid pandemic which had a huge impact on the wellbeing of our younger generations and their education. The Welsh Government has also recognised the work of Wales’ special schools and has made a further £1m available to support the vital role they play. Also announced this week are plans to boost Welsh language provision in schools to enable all pupils in Wales to become confident Welsh speakers.
Last week I visited Ysgol Maesglas in Greenfield and spoke to the children about my role as a government minister and member of the Senedd – it was great to talk to the next generation about their hopes and aspirations and I learnt all about the work they’ve been doing in relation to the Future of Wales Report and their project on the Welsh constitution. The school has been running a series of debates about the possible direction of Wales’ governance and it was a real eye-opener to hear the children’s views.
We’re just coming to the end of Endometriosis Action Month (March) and I want to offer my support for everyone affected by endometriosis and to praise the good work done by organisations like Endometriosis UK, which is working to raise the profile and bust the myths about the condition, which affects around 1.5 million women in the UK.
Endometriosis is the name given to the condition where cells similar to the ones in the lining of the womb (uterus) are found elsewhere in the body and these cells react to the menstrual cycle each month and also bleed, causing inflammation, pain and the formation of scar tissue as well as fatigue, depression and isolation and problems with sex life. The condition can affect from puberty to menopause – although the impact may be felt for life – but with the right treatment many of these issues can be addressed and the symptoms made more manageable.
I know many residents have raised concerns with regards to proposals to create accommodation for initial application asylum seekers at the Northop Hall Country Hotel. I’ve written to the Home Office about this application and also my concerns regarding the current system and I’ve also called into one of the public information sessions organised by local councillors. Plans are available online and there is a consultation process under way. I encourage all local residents to get involved in the process and make their voices heard – you can submit your comments at www.northopia.co.uk and see the plans or email email@example.com with the subject line Northop IA to make your comments.
Last week I ran an advice surgery in Flint to help residents with any issues they may have – I’m also planning a street surgery in Trelogan on April 5, so if you live in the area, watch out for information coming through your letter box. As always, if you would like advice and/or support at any other time, please don’t hesitate to get in touch on any of the following contact details – 52 High Street, Mold, Flintshire, on 01352 753464 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org You can also keep up to date via my Facebook page – www.facebook.com/hannahblythynMS Constituents are, of course, welcome to contact my office to arrange an appointment to see me, you don’t need to wait until an advice surgery.