A NUMBER of schools will be closed over the next 10 years as Powys County Council look to restructure and reorganise its education provision.

Sixth forms will also disappear from some of the county’s secondary schools which are all set to become “all-age schools” providing education from four to at least 16 years old.

These are among the measures outlined in a new report that is expected to be approved by council leader Cllr Rosemarie Harris next Tuesday, which sets the direction of school reorganisation for the next decade, and which has been analysed by the Local Democracy Service in partnership with the County Times.

The action is partly a response to a critical Estyn report published in September 2019, and also addresses financial issues in schools and a number of historical problems.

The report's recommendations are based on two schools conferences with school governors and headteachers that took place in October 2019 and this February.

Weight has also been given to the answers of an online questionnaire which was filled in by 274 people.

The strategy explains that change will come in three waves, between 2020 and 2022, then on to 2025, and another going beyond 2025.

During the next decade 11 all-age schools, similar to Machynlleth’s Ysgol Bro Hyddgen, will be established.

A number of primary schools will close in a process called “reconfiguring and rationalising”.

Work will be done to choose where sixth form centres will be located and these should be established by the end of the decade.

In the short term, schools will be encouraged to work together and develop “digital learning opportunities”.

By 2022, PCC will hope to improve intensive Welsh language teaching known as “immersion” and help three schools continue towards becoming Welsh medium schools.

The hope is that two further Welsh medium schools will be established or built after 2025.

Developing a new county-wide network of specialist ALN provision to include-post 16, will be the aim throughout the decade.

While the decision to “transform” will be taken on April 14, the actual implementation of change will take a long time.

PCC will need to go through eight steps of discussion, consultation and allowing time for objections before a final decision is taken on each and every change.

The changes are divided into four categories: Improve learner entitlement and experience; Improve learner entitlement and experience for post-16 learners (Post-16/Sixth Form); Improve access to Welsh-medium provision across all key stages (Welsh medium education); Improve provision for learners with special education needs / additional learning needs.