The government’s target of increasing the number of Welsh speakers to one million by 2050 looks like a tough ask, with latest figures showing a 50% decline in the number of teenagers taking an A Level in the language over the last 10 years.
In 2018, just 528 students signed up for both first and second language Welsh A levels at schools and further education colleges. This is a big challenge for the new Welsh language Commissioner, Aled Roberts, who took up his post in April 2019
Roberts is aware of the size of the task in front of him. Asked about the challenges he faces in the post he said: "The same challenges as my predecessor faced really, to ensure that the Welsh language standards are properly applied throughout the public sector, to oversee the introduction of standards to new parts of the public sector and then probably the greatest challenge is to see how can contribute towards the target the Welsh Government has set to achieve a million Welsh speakers by 2050.”
The government has announced £145,000 in additional spending on the promotion of Welsh for 2020.