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Last Updated: Monday, 18 February 2008, 07:01 GMT
Baccalaureate students to double
Students sitting exams
The Welsh Bac was first tried at 19 schools in 2002
Thousands more students will have the chance to study for the Welsh Baccalaureate (bac) from September, it has been announced.

The qualification - which is valued at the equivalent of an A grade at A-level - will be on offer at 27 more schools, colleges and training centres.

It is the second phase of the roll-out of the qualification across Wales.

It will double the number of students who will have the opportunity to take it to almost 18,000.

It means that from next September 27 new centres will offer the bac, and there will be extra provision at 24 centres presently involved.

Olchfa School, Swansea
Heolddu Comprehensive School; Milford Haven School; Caereinon High School; Cambrian Training
PRP Training; Hawarden High School; Ysgol Emrys Ap Iwan; Crickhowell High School
Porthcawl Comprehensive School; Ysgol Penweddig; Ysgol Gyfun Emlyn; City of Swansea Emp Training
Tonyrefail School; Brynteg Comprehensive School; Eirias High School; Olchfa School
Fitzalan High School, Cardiff; Yale College; Ysgol Dyffryn Ogwen - Cynnal Consortium; Ysgol Tryfan - Cynnal Consortium
Ysgol y Creuddyn - Cynnal Consortium; Sir Thomas Picton School; Croesyceiliog School; Ferndale Community School
Cardiff High School; Llantwit Major School; Llanidloes High School; Tonypandy Community College and Cyfarthfa High School (both approved Feb 2007, deferred entry to Sept 2008)
Source: Welsh Assembly Government

The expansion also means that 102 education centres across Wales will offer the bac at post-16 advanced and intermediate level.

Education Minister Jane Hutt said students recognised the worth of the bac, whether they went on to higher education or to work.

"It is wonderful that higher education institutions and employers are increasingly seeing how Welsh Baccalaureate students are developing into confident, well-rounded individuals.

"From experience we know that it is vitally important that young people are equipped with the skills needed to get ahead.

"The Welsh Baccalaureate is ensuring that students are learning transferable key skills they can use throughout their learning and working lives."

The Welsh Assembly Government said new marketing materials, including a revamped website, had been launched "to increase awareness and illustrate the benefits of studying the Welsh Baccalaureate."

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