PARENTS and guardians of secondary school pupils in Llandrindod Wells and Builth Wells are being reminded that today is the deadline to submit their views for transformational plans for the direction of the school.

Since Llandrindod Wells High School and Builth Wells High School merged into becoming Ysgol Calon Cymru in September 2018, the new two-sited model has been besieged by problems.

An audit report released earlier this month uncovered worrying findings regarding the decision-making process of merging the schools – which currently operates as one overarching school across both the Llandrindod and Builth campuses.

Concerns raised included a lack of clarity and understanding of the whole concept, a reliance on the interim governing body to deliver proposals, continuing and growing financial losses and the significant impact on pupils’ learning.

Powys County Council says it has become clear that the school’s two-sited model is restricting its ability to continue to grow and develop.

In 2020, the council developed a business case which looked at future options for Ysgol Calon Cymru. This identified making the following possible alterations: A new 11-18 English-medium campus in Llandrindod and a remodelled 4-18 Welsh-medium all-through campus in Builth.

The school currently provides secondary education for pupils aged 11-18 across the two campuses.

The school, however, is on an improvement journey, according to the county council.

The council wants to know what people think about the possible plans before it starts the legal process that would need to be followed to make these changes.

The main focus of this exercise is on the future plans for Ysgol Calon Cymru, however some other schools could also be impacted, in particular Builth Wells Primary School.

You can let the local authority know your views on the possible plans by completing a questionnaire, which you can do so at this link

You can also send your views via email to but today (January 26) is the deadline.

Last week we reported how SWAP Internal Audit Services’ report said the “responsibility for making decisions about the running of the school was primarily left to the governing body”.

“There was not enough analysis during the proposal to fully consider the impact and implementation of the changes. This left the school with limited direction on how to implement the merger,” it said.


The report revealed that the school’s current shortfall in finances is only set to deepen in the coming years.

Ysgol Calon Cymru had a £173,451 deficit at the end of 2020/21. It is projected that this deficit will rapidly rise to just under £1.3 million by March 2024.

There were also concerns regarding the final decision the council arrived at – an option that even the local authority were against back in 2017, but went ahead with anyway.

Of seven original options, establishing a dual-stream category secondary school in Builth was the council’s preferred choice, but it instead chose option two – the dual-stream model across both sites – because a further feasibility study work was required.

“As an interim measure the council switched to an option that was rejected as part of the initial analysis because it did not meet the objectives,” continued the report.

“There was limited information provided to members on how the dual-stream interim arrangement would be delivered and the potential impact it would have on the learners of those schools.”

Powys County Council said its governance and audit committee were set to consider the report’s evaluation of the merger proposal last Friday.

“Any outcomes from the committee will be considered in due course,” said a spokesperson.