I must respond to DT Jones's unwarranted comments about me in his letter "Bilingual aims healthy" (TES, May 28). I don't mind being called a "reactionary" but I do object to being called ignorant of Welsh language issues.
For the record, I have taught both boys and girls between five and 18 years of age from eight Welsh-medium schools both in north and south Wales - so I know what I'm talking about.
On the subject of bilingualism (so-called) some basic facts are ignored or go unmentioned:
* Children who go to the popular Welsh-medium schools in south Wales are getting not a bilingual but a heavily monolingual education, where every subject bar English is delivered in Welsh.
* As these children come usually from only English-speaking homes their education is thus one-sided and frequently, though not always, leaves them backward in their "native" tongue.
* This situation is at any rate chosen by parents in the south, but here in the north parents have to put up with a 50-50 language split despite the fact that their children are growing up in a world dominated more and more by the English language.
* A group of parents near Carmarthen, although initially supportive of Welsh-medium schooling, began to campaign for the main part of the curriculum to be delivered in English. But even this made them unpopular.
DT Jones' s response shows how difficult it can be to discuss this matter calmly. A number of parents have expressed to me their concerns about the relative dominance of Welsh in north Wales schooling but they are uneasy about "going public".
15B South Snowdon Wharf