Ysgol y Garnedd is a Welsh designated community school, and serves the city of Bangor and the neighbouring villages of Tal-y-Bont and Llandygai. A considerable number of its pupils now come from outside the school’s normal catchment-area.
Approximately three hundred children attend the school of whom half come from non-Welsh speaking homes. We take pride in the fact that Welsh speaking and non-Welsh speaking parents want their children to receive a good bilingual education within a Welsh environment. It is extremely important that this ethos is created. Learners come to speak Welsh remarkably fluently, bearing in mind that bilingualism is a process which is fostered over a period of time, and the school’s language policy reflects that. The children speak both languages confidently by the end of their primary school career. And there is plenty of evidence to show that pupils benefit greatly from receiving a balanced bilingual education.
We are fortunate in having a Nursery Group and Clwb y Garnedd on the school premises, which provides an additional and valuable service.
Ensuring that children are happy at the school is one of my principal priorities as a Headteacher – through implementing fair discipline, expectation of exemplary conduct, taking positive action if bullying occurs and listening to the children’s comments, e.g. through the School Council. Success is achieved when children are happy.
Our greatest challenge is to ensure that every child achieves his/her potential. To that end, the school is still developing teaching methods and insisting on high expectations.
Lastly, it is essential that there be a good partnership between the school and the home, and I wish to emphasise that the ‘open door’ principle is extremely important.


  • Establish a happy and hard-working environment based on mutual respect and care between teachers, teachers and pupils, thus enabling pupils to display positive attitudes and develop self-confidence.

  • Generate a school environment that stimulates an appreciation of the elegant and beautiful.

  • Ensure that the education that is provided promotes every pupil’s moral, cultural, mental and physical development, and that the whole curriculum is differentiated, broad and well-balanced.

  • Ensure that the LEA’s language policy is effectively implemented within the context of the National Curriculum.

  • Ensure that learning arrangements and methods adopted throughout the school are coherent and well-balanced.

  • Utilize various specializations within the school and create flexible arrangements to ensure that pupils are able to utilize these specializations.

  • Provide an opportunity to train the entire staff in accordance with the needs and requirements of pupils, the curriculum and statutory requirements.

  • Foster in pupils self-discipline, self-esteem and self-confidence.

  • Provide the maximum opportunity for pupils to develop their talents and interests.

  • Develop pupils’ skills across a wide range of fields, including leisure-time skills.

  • Make pupils feel proud of their locality and country, and develop in them a respect towards the world in which they live.

  • Create an environment and atmosphere which will enable a pupil to grow, develop and mature into a confident individual, who is aware of the welfare of others and become a responsible member of the community.

  • Provide the highest possible standard of education which reflects the requirements of the community, the LEA and Governors through the National Curriculum.

  • Enable every pupil to become fluent in Welsh and English, so as to enable them to fully participate in the social and cultural life of the bilingual community.

  • Make the children aware of their enriching Welsh background through placing a special emphasis on appreciating the traditions and culture of Wales.

  • Foster respect towards moral and Christian values.

  • Promote self-expression through the arts and equip the child to participate in the bilingual community.

The school is a designated Welsh School. The school’s official and administrative language is Welsh. When parents meetings are arranged (e.g. welcome new parents and Governors Annual meetings), they are held through the medium of Welsh but a simultaneous translation service is provided. Correspondence solely through the medium of Welsh is sent to families who understand the language and bilingually to non-Welsh speaking families. A parent who is able to speak Welsh is expected to do so at all times with his/her child, so as to promote the child’s cultural and educational development.

When non-Welsh speaking newcomers are admitted to the school, it is ensured that they are made to feel happy and at home before making every effort to teach them Welsh, as soon as possible, so as to enable them to naturally assimilate into school and community life.

Gwynedd Council implements a bilingual policy and its objective is to foster full bilingualism. The aim is to ensure that children are bilingual by the time they reach primary school-leaving age at eleven years old.

Most of the work of the under-5 Children’s Unit is conducted through the medium of Welsh. A shift in the linguistic balance occurs as a child moves up through the school: by Years 5 and 6, equal use is made of both languages, which is reflected in their work books.

The school serves a broad community. No effort is spared to ensure that each pupil has a sense of belonging to the school family. We take pride in the fact that most visitors to the school recognize the sense of friendship and discipline that exists at the school, and how newly admitted pupils settle down contentedly and quickly.
There is a hard-working classroom ethos, which is reinforced by displays of the children’s work. This shows respect towards the pupils’ work and efforts and ensures a stimulating and attractive environment.
In the last Estyn inspection (October 2000) it was noted that ‘pupils’ spiritual, moral and social development’ was very good. The school is a caring, welcoming and well-organized community.’
The school’s values are listed on a poster which is displayed in each class:
At our school we
·         speak Welsh to one another
·         are kind and courteous to everybody
·         do our best, listen and focus
·         look after our personal objects and other people’s
·         keep everywhere tidy and safe at all times
·         able to work on our own


Weli di wawr hapusrwydd ar wynebau,
a’r miri wrth i ffrindiau ddod ynghyd?
Weli di law yn estyn am law arall,
a gwên yn cyfarch gwen yn wyn ein byd?

Ac mae’r haul yn codi beunydd dros y Garnedd,
yn bwrw’i wrid dros doeau llwyd y stryd.
Gyda’n gilydd cerddwn ninnau yn ei lewyrch,
yn ein chwarae, yn ein gwaith, yn wên i gyd.

Glywi di heniaith yn llawn bywyd ifanc,
a chân yfory yn ei seiniau hi?
Glywi di’r iaith yn dawnsio ar dafodau,
a’n ffrydio’n fyw dros ein gwefusau ni?

Ac mae’r haul yn codi beunydd dros y Garnedd,
yn bwrw’i wrid dros doeau llwyd y stryd.
Gyda’n gilydd cerddwn ninnau yn ei lewyrch,
yn ein chwarae, yn ein gwaith, yn wên i gyd.

Deimli di’r gwres ar aelwyd glòs yr ysgol,
a’i gofal hi amdanom ni mor dynn?
Deimli di’n gofal ninnau am ein gilydd,
yn mynd ar draws y byd yn obaith gwyn?

Llion Jones a Pwyll ap Siôn

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