A WELSH language charter, Ceri Siarad, has been launched in all Welsh medium schools across Ceredigion at the start of the autumn term.

The aim of the charter is to give confidence to pupils to use the Welsh language in all aspects of their lives, in order to increase the use of the language outside of the classroom.

The charter follows on from the success of ‘Cymraeg Campus’ in English medium schools regionally.

Schools will work towards bronze, silver and gold awards, which they will achieve depending on the opportunities they provide for pupils to use Welsh in formal and informal situations.

Barry Rees, Ceredigion County Council’s strategic director for learning and partnerships explained the meaning behind the symbol of Ceri, chosen to represent the language charter in Ceredigion.

He said: “Ceri is a powerful symbol for us here in Ceredigion. Ceri is a red kite and the bird's history is symbolic. We almost lost the dignified bird of our country at one time, but through the conservation projects, favourable conditions and hard labour of Ceredigion, the population of kites grew from two to more than a thousand pairs.

“This is our aim with the Welsh language. We need to provide it with the right conditions to thrive, instil pride in our pupils and communities when using it and respond to our own personal challenge to use and promote the Welsh language with confidence whenever we can.”

Cabinet member with responsibilities for learning services, Cllr Catrin Miles, said, “We’re very fortunate in Wales to be bilingual: a skill that opens doors, and one that the majority of the population across the world possesses.

“It’s a pleasure to show our support for the Welsh language charter Ceri Siarad in our schools in Ceredigion. It’s important to show that Welsh is not just a language restricted to the classroom, but the language of the playing field, the language of technology, of leisure and of culture.

“Through providing the Welsh language charter in our schools, we are supporting our children and giving them a chance to develop their confidence in using the Welsh language.”

The launch of the charter is in keeping with the Welsh Government's aim of creating a million Welsh speakers by 2050.