We're en route to another climactic mystery and these two episodes have got the ball rolling in the right direction.
For me these episodes were about Saki. I do realise that she's been the main character all this time, but now that she's been given the role as the peacemaker for the Education/Ethics committee she's never been more present than she has in these two episodes.
Her role in the series is definitely increasing, to the point where her candidacy for the next leader is bringing about interesting developments. Not counting the new info about Satoru's grandma - I had my suspicions - the whole dynamic of the village elders and the children is getting explored, much to my liking.
If these two episodes did anything, it was set up for the upcoming arc. Mamoru's running away was pretty much a given at this point in the story, and I'm impressed by how it's being made into another adventure arc. Episode 13 did laid the ground work for it and episode 14 set up for it by explaining a lot of the mystery behind the Ethics Committee and the Education Board.
As the episodes pass, the series is becoming more accessible and generally easier to watch. My biggest gripe with SSY was that it over-complicated things or perhaps tried to hard on the artistic direction side of things, but now I'm finding myself more drawn to the story.
Basic summary: there was progress but not at a fast pace. We learned a few great things along the way, and I'm thinking that the appearance of old Queerats is hinting at an over-arching plot to be revealed sooner rather than later (based on previews). At this point, I'm more than happy with where the series is going and how Saki's position as the main character has been highlighted.