- Best practice
- Equitable outcomes
- Kōhanga Reo
- Kauapapa Māori
- Knowledge building
- Mātauranga Māori
- Māori student achievement
- Māori parents and whanau
- Māori learners
- Māori immersion
- Māori Education Evaluation
- Literacy and numeracy
- Te Kōhanga Reo
- Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust
- Te reo Māori
- Te Rūnanga Nui o ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori o Aotearoa
- Teachers | Kaiako
- Tikanga Māori
- Te ao Māori
- Children's success
Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways and supporting documentaries are the outcome of a collaborative research project between ERO, Māori-medium peak bodies – Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori, Ngā Kura ā Iwi o Aotearoa, Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust and individual Māori-medium sites.
ERO’s intention was to become a part of the journey provided in Māori-medium education and to identify and share those common conditions for success where Māori are happy, confident learners, who display a strong sense of being Māori.
Documenting these common themes through Te Kura Huanui, and the rich storytelling offered through the accompanying videos, offers a rare opportunity to share the philosophies of Māori-medium education and to tell the story of early founders and those who carry on their legacy today.
The co-designed project involved face-to-face interviews, observations and film footage of early founders, kaumatua, kura, raukura and manu pīrere (graduates), kaiako, kaimahi, tumuaki, whānau, hapū and iwi. Research was conducted by Māori, for Māori, with Māori and in te reo Māori whenever possible. The reports are published in both te reo Māori and English.
Whole article:Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways
Mātua ake, ko te whakamānawa i a koutou ngā kura, ngā kōhanga reo me ngā whānau i whakaae mai ki tēnei kaupapa. Ki a koutou ngā kōhanga reo, ngā kura Aho Matua me Ngā Kura ā Iwi – tēnā koutou.
E mōteatea ana te ngākau ki ō koutou mate, nā ētahi o aua mate i para tonu te huanui hei takahitanga, hei whāinga mā ngā tamariki mokopuna i whai wāhi mai ki tēnei kaupapa. E kore ā koutou hekenga werawera e wareware i a mātau kua mahue ki te ao nei, ko te ngau o te mokemoke hei hoa haere.
Tauāraia te pō, tītoko ko te ao mārama. Ki a koutou ngā Raukura me ngā Manu Pīrere i whai wāhi mai ki tēnei kaupapa nui taioreore, otirā ō koutou whānau anō hoki, tēnei te mihi ake. Nā ō koutou wheako i whai matapihi ai mātou ki te ao i noho ai koutou me ōna tini whakamīharotanga, ngā kura huanui me ngā kura huarau i puāwai ai koutou. Nō reira ko tā te kaupapa nei, he ngana ki te whakamārama i ngā āhuatanga i angitu ai koutou, me kore noa e angitu ā tātou tamariki, mokopuna katoa. Nō reira, hei ngā pīkaunga manako nui o ō koutou mātua, ō koutou whānau, ō koutou iwi hoki, mā ā koutou mahi e whai hua ai āpōpō. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa.
Te Whakapapa o Te Kura Huanui: The Treasures of successful pathways
In naming Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways, the Education Review Office (ERO) acknowledges the guiding philosophies of Māori-medium education that influence the successful outcomes for Raukura and Manu Pīrere, whānau, hapū, iwi and the wider community.
From the outset of this project, ERO sought to honour and uphold the unique differences of each learning environment, while understanding the commonalities which run through all Māori-medium education. In naming this report, it was important to acknowledge the different pathways tamariki can, and do, take through their Māori-medium journey.
For this research project, Kura Kaupapa Māori Te Aho Matua identified: Poutiria te Reo Mauriora: Māori language as a lifelong educational pathway, as the most meaningful way to capture the connections and frame the outcomes for Raukura (graduates) and whānau.
Ngā Kura ā Iwi acknowledged the name Whāia Ngā Ara Painga Kia Angitu: Pathways to Success which reflects how successful education outcomes recognise and support the individual potential for all learners and whānau.
We honour the collaboration and ideals which underpin all Māori immersion education. As the name reflects, the successful pathways of Māori-medium education provide treasures that are valuable for education provision in Aotearoa and precious to Māori people.
This report intentionally acknowledges, references and reflects Te Aho Matua (philosophy of Kura Kaupapa Māori), Te Ara TOA (Pathway for success – Ngā Kura ā Iwi framework), and Te Whāriki a Te Kōhanga Reo for Te Kōhanga Reo, to ensure we celebrate how each kura (including Te Kōhanga Reo) empowers Māori learners to enjoy and achieve success as Māori.
As part of this project, interviews were conducted with Raukura and Manu Pīrere across Māori-medium education. For this report, they are referred to as:
Meaning treasure, Raukura is the name given to graduates of Kura Kaupapa Māori Te Aho Matua.
Meaning fledgling/migrating bird, Manu Pīrere is the name given to graduates of Ngā Kura ā Iwi.
. The focus of this report is on Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori (Te Aho Matua) and Ngā Kura ā Iwi. Each operate under the umbrella of their respective national governing bodies, Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust, Te Rūnanga Nui o ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori o Aotearoa and Te Maru o Ngā Kura ā Iwi o Aotearoa. Kura Kaupapa Māori Aho Matua are Kura Kaupapa Māori who embody Te Aho Matua as a foundation philosophy for their Kura. They are distinct from Kura Kaupapa Māori (who may not incorporate Te Aho Matua) or Kura Māori.
Wāhinga kōrero | Foreword
Since its inception, Māori-medium education has demonstrated an unwavering tenacity to produce successful outcomes for Māori learners, despite facing significant challenges.
The establishment of a Māori-medium pathway through kōhanga reo, kura, wharekura and now onto wananga has been hard-won. Commencing in the early 1980s, Māori leaders and educationalists, along with whānau, hapū and iwi have committed themselves to the development of a distinctly indigenous Māori model of education provision. This embeds the restoration of te reo Māori, kaupapa Māori, mātauranga Māori, tikanga Māori and te ao Māori.
For this project, the Education Review Office (ERO) was privileged to be given time and access to Māori-medium sites around Aotearoa to help gain a deeper understanding of the common conditions of success for Māori learners.
The work commences with the graduates who have come through a Māori medium pathway, from kōhanga reo to kura and wharekura and profiles their lives and the factors that have contributed to their successes.
What has shone through is the ability of Māori-medium education to continually produce confident, successful graduates who are strengthened by their whakapapa, te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori.
It is our hope that Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways, and the accompanying vignettes, will celebrate the successes of Māori-medium as a world-leader in indigenous education. This work clearly provides valuable insights to influence provision for Māori.
This work in its entirety reflects and belongs to all of Māori-medium, to the early founders, former and current tumuaki, kaiako, Raukura, Manu Pīrere, learners and the whānau, hapū and iwi which uplift and support them.
These are their stories and their successes, and I extend personal thanks and gratitude to the peak bodies Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori o Aotearoa, Ngā Kura ā Iwi, and Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust for allowing us to be part of their journey. Thank you also to each and every Māori-medium site, their Raukura and Manu Pīrere, kaiako and tumuaki that took time to share their stories, experiences, practices and theoretical underpinnings with us.
ERO acknowledges the significant support, and partnership we have had from the Ministry of Education, who saw this project as an opportunity to explore and document education success for Māori learners. The report adds to the education sector’s understanding of the confidence and subsequent success that comes when Māori learners are secure in their own identity, immersed in their language and culture, and experience these being valued and celebrated throughout their education.
Te Kura Huanui highlights the role of whānau as experts, leaders and key decision-makers in the education of tamariki. These findings show a need for strong connection and authentic engagement between education providers, whānau, hapū and iwi.
We know there is more to be done to fully realise the transformative potential of Māori-medium education, and to expand its reach to more learners and their whānau. The evidence and exemplars provided in this report are testament to the priority and importance we need to give to this.
Te Tumu Whakarae mō te Arotake Māturanga | Chief Executive and Chief Review Officer
Te Tari Arotake Mātauranga | Education Review Office
If we didn’t have Kura Kaupapa Māori, if we didn’t have this marae; I would not have my reo Māori. RAUKURA
There were really strong connections between roles of adults and at the heart it was always about the tamaiti. RAUKURA
We felt aroha. We felt, heard and saw manaaki. We saw, felt and heard whanaungatanga. We could touch it. Those are valuable treasures as you make your way in the world. MANU PĪRERE
WATCH Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways
He kupu whakataki | Introduction
In Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways the interviews with Māori whānau, leaders, kaiako, kaimahi and kaumatua generously provide a glimpse into communities deeply committed to revitalising and strengthening te reo Māori and tikanga Māori for their mokopuna, tamariki and future generations.
Why did we do this research?
Within the education sector, we share the common aspirations to support Māori learners in enjoying and achieving education success as Māori.
As well as ensuring Māori learners have equitable access to quality education, Māori learners thrive when their identity, language and culture are embedded in learning and they have a strong sense of their identity as Māori.
To gain a deeper understanding of the education environments where Māori learners are consistently nurtured to fulfil their potential as Māori, the Education Review Office (ERO) undertook a comprehensive study in partnership with Māori-medium governing bodies and Māori-medium education sites across Aotearoa.
What did we hope to achieve?
This work intended to capture Māori narratives around what was fundamental to the development of Maōri-medium education and share those experiences for others to learn from. Maori-medium education has come a long way from self-funded marae delivery through to a legitimate state funded option for Māori learners. This work has sought to illuminate common effective conditions in order to support Māori learners enjoying and achieving as Māori into the future.
Māori-medium education is focused on the provision of a transformative learning environment for mokopuna, tamariki, whānau, hapū and iwi.
By forming a strong community of support around the learner, the kura whānau (Māori-medium community) is able to nurture mokopuna and tamariki at every phase of the learning journey – taking care of their emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual wellbeing.
ERO’s intention was to become a part of the journey provided in Māori-medium education and to identify and share those common conditions for success where Māori are happy, confident learners, who display a strong sense of being Māori.
Documenting these common themes through Te Kura Huanui, and the rich storytelling offered through the accompanying vignettes, offers a rare opportunity to share the philosophies of Māori-medium education and to tell their story.
For Māori children learning in English-medium settings, Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways offers guidance for building communities connected with whānau, hapū and iwi, and insight into providing an education environment that celebrates and strengthens learners in their sense of belonging and identity as Māori.
 "As Māori [means] being able to have access to te ao Māori, the Māori world – access to language, culture, marae… tikanga... and resources" Professor Mason Durie, (2003). Ngā Kahui Pou: Launching Māori Futures. Huia Publications.
Methodology: How did we do this research?
By Māori with Māori, for Māori, as Māori and in te reo Māori
By Māori with Māori, for Māori, as Māori and in te reo Māori directs our research. This work was carried out by Te Pou Mataaho – ERO’s Māori evaluation and research group and Te Uepū ā-Motu, ERO’s evaluation and review team in the Māori-medium space.
From the outset, the research was conducted with a strong kaupapa Māori approach and a shared commitment to uphold the tikanga and philosophies of each learning environment. The research approach was developed in partnership with Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori, Ngā Kura ā-Iwi and Te Kōhanga Reo. Changes were made throughout the research process to reflect and respond to the feedback and experiences of our partners in the Māori-medium sector.
Kaupapa Māori theory acknowledges the land, culture and history and people of Aotearoa New Zealand, to provide a unique research framework for whānau, hapū and iwi. A Kaupapa Māori research approach overlays this report to ensure a Māori world view is clear throughout this project.
“Kaupapa Māori theory is drawn from Māori ways of knowing and being and assumes the normalcy of Māori knowledge, language and culture. It gives voice to Māori aspirations and expresses the way in which Māori aspirations, ideas and learning practices can be framed and organised. The implementation of kaupapa Māori theory emphasises practices that enable Māori to achieve educational success as Māori. At its core is the retention of the Māori language and culture, which provides a foundation for positive transformations and brings about educational, social and economic advancement.” (Ministry of Education, 2017, p.14)
The methodology for this project includes face-to-face interviews and film footage of kaumatua, parents, kura graduates (referred to as Raukura and Manu Pīrere throughout) teachers, whānau and leaders. Written and digital data collection encounters the land, waterways and the geographical features of the landscape which make up the unique approach in Kōhanga, Kura Kaupapa Māori and Ngā Kura ā Iwi, that are equally important to teaching and learning.
Collaboration towards a Māori Narrative
This programme of work was undertaken in close collaboration with Māori-medium governing bodies. The journey began with speaking to graduates of Māori-medium education to understand how learning in an immersion environment, steeped in tikanga Māori and te ao Māori has impacted on their lives and education.
From their stories and experiences, ERO designed a qualitative research approach which involved face-to-face interviews with kaiako, leaders, kaumātua, whānau and others in the kura whānau. All interviews were conducted in te reo Māori, with Māori and for Māori.
Te Kura Huanui is built on the valued experiences of those Raukura and/or Manu Pīrere (graduates of Kura Kaupapa Māori and Ngā Kura ā Iwi) and the shared, and unique, aspects of the philosophies and education that influenced them as learners, citizens of Aotearoa and contributors to indigenous groups globally.
To share the story of Māori-medium education through those lived experiences of the Raukura and Manu Pīrere, and their whānau, kaiako, hapū and iwi, ERO identified five key conditions common across Māori-medium education. The following conditions emerged as essential for Māori learners enjoying and achieving success as Māori, and guide the findings shared in Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways.
- Mana Māori Motuhake: Being Māori
- Tikanga Māori
- Whanaungatanga: Relationships and connectedness
- Ako: Teaching and Learning
- Kanohi Whakakite: Leaders as Visionaries
Data sources and methods
Three sources of data were collected by ERO for the development of this research
- Interviews in Te Reo Māori
A series of face to face interviews were undertaken in te reo Māori with key participants. Excerpts of the translated transcripts were provided to the evaluation team for this report. Throughout the interviews, ERO sought to investigate the following:
- How te reo Māori education pathways define, demonstrate and promote conditions that foster Māori success as Māori?
- How whānau, hapū and iwi in Māori-medium education influence, lead and actively contribute to the educational success of Māori learners
- How leadership influences the provision of quality outcomes across the Māori-medium education pathway
- How kaiako facilitate learning and the provision of high-quality education in Māori-medium education
- How te reo Māori education creates and transforms outcomes
- Video interviews
A series of interviews were filmed and edited to demonstrate the common conditions for Māori learners enjoying and achieving success as Māori. The edited clips were provided to the project team for review and analysis. The resulting vignettes add another important layer of storytelling and insight into the Māori-medium setting. In each video, a deeply connected community of whānau, learners, hapū, iwi, kaiako and kaimahi are present in every setting, actively surrounding and supporting mokopuna and tamariki to be Māori.
- ERO evaluation reports
Three previous ERO reports conducted in Māori-medium: Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori Te Aho Matua, Ngā Kura ā-Iwi , were given to the project team for review. These provided the project team with great insight into Māori-medium education.
What did we find?
Ultimately, Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori and Ngā Kura ā Iwi provide models of excellence for Māori education, and offer exemplars for supporting Māori learners to enjoy and achieve education success as Māori, in Māori-medium settings.
The influence of the Māori world view is paramount and remains at the core of successful Māori-medium provision. There are philosophical differences which portray nuances across the Māori-medium paradigm, but nevertheless a constant remains steady across the sector: expressing and prioritising te ao Māori, te reo Māori, tikanga Māori and Mātauranga Māori.
Differing Māori-medium philosophies of Te Aho Matua, Te Ara TOA and Te Whāriki all support learners to fulfil their potential as descendants of Ranginui and Papatūānuku.
We need to show the beauty, the depth and the importance of te reo Māori to those whānau who have not yet seen those things. I am supporting this path of Kura Kaupapa Māori and Te Aho Matua. I have seen the benefits. I have seen the success. I have seen the path for a Māori child. It is a path that enables you to walk in both worlds. RAUKURA
There was a focus on all Māori, not just Waikato. There was wide and deep whanaungatanga, manaakitanga and tiakitanga for all students. MANU PĪRERE
Here the kaiako are like your parents... To me, I am overjoyed that my children are here, that my children are a part of this world. There is no better world for them. MANU PĪRERE
Whakarāpopototanga | Executive Summary
Māori education success as Māori is emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual wellbeing.
This is shown through the holistic education approach in Māori-medium.
Te Kura Huanui identifies five common conditions for success across Māori-medium education services:
Mana Māori Motuhake:
Mana Atua | Mana Whenua | Mana Reo
Relationships and connectedness
Teaching and Learning
Leaders as visionaries
Success, for our kura, is to revitalise te reo o Ngāti Porou and Ngāti Porou tikanga. Some people believe that success is determined by money, but if you take all that away, what is left? It is your whānau, hapū, marae. RAUKURA
It is a kura whānau, that’s the best description. Everything we did was as a whānau. We would never push anyone to the side, we would move as one. We would learn together – waiata, lessons, work on the marae. It was being one, we had strong bonds. MANU PĪRERE
When school started, the whānau would govern the kura. Mum was the secretary of the kura; at times Dad would come in as a teacher. My Aunty was the principal, Mum was the hockey teacher... For swimming, Mum was the teacher. The bus drivers were parents, the cleaners were parents, the builders of the new school were parents, the carpenters and electricians were parents. It was by the hands of the parents of Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ruamatā that the kura was built. RAUKURA
Ko taa maatou mahi ko te poipoi, te tautoko me te kaha akiaki nei i ngaa aakonga kia eke ki taumata tiketike ahakoa kei whea, ahakoa te kaupapa kia tuu pakari, kia tuu Maaori raatou hei manu taaiko moo te whaanau, moo te hapuu, moo te iwi anoo hoki. WHĀNAU STATEMENT NGĀ TAIATEA
History of Māori-medium education
To understand the common conditions for success which characterise Māori-medium education, it is essential to understand the historical circumstances that led to their development.
Early New Zealand legislation had a significant and detrimental impact on education for Māori learners, and the impacts of disease, land removal and immigration meant the Māori population and te reo Māori quickly became a minority.
By the 1970s, te reo Māori was found to be in a state of serious decline, prompting young Māori in the student groups Ngā Tama Toa and Te Reo Māori Society to advocate and petition for te reo Māori to be reintroduced to the school curriculum.
The petition resulted in the establishment of Māori Language Day (now Māori Language Week). A low number of native Māori language speakers at this time meant that te reo Māori was becoming critically endangered.
The journey to establish Māori-medium provision, and have it recognised as a legitimate alternative to the English medium system, has been hard-won and built on the dedication of leaders, kaiako, whānau, hapū, iwi and the wider communities who have supported every aspect of its success. The development of Māori-medium provision remains one of the most signficant advancements in New Zealand's education history.
1982 Te Kōhanga Reo
In 1982, Te Kōhanga Reo was established by elders and whānau to revitalise the language
and culture. Not funded by the government, Māori communities supported the function of
Te Kōhanga Reo on marae, in garages and in homes across the nation. Te Kōhanga Reo was focused on language revitalisation, as a result this also led to a massive revitalisation of Māori Education philosophy. Simultaneously, Te Ataarangi (a language revitalisation program) supported the development of more Māori language speakers in communities.
1985 Kura Kaupapa Māori
To provide ongoing te reo Māori schooling for students from Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori was established in 1985. Just like Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori was self-funding. Whānau provided the teachers, buildings sites, resources and all other necessary functions of a school system. It took nine years of self-resourcing before Kura Kaupapa Māori gained government assistance. In 1999, Te Aho Matua, as a Māori educational philosophy was legislated.
2007 Ngā Kura ā Iwi
Following on from Kura Kaupapa Māori Te Aho Matua, Ngā Kura ā Iwi were established in 2007 providing autonomy for iwi-based Māori language education settings. The values of Tihi o Angitu (Peaks of Achievement/Success) implemented in Ngā Kura ā Iwi specifically reflect the unique aspects of local iwi and the desire to achieve.
Timeline showing the following:
1814 Mission Schools
Mission Schools established in Aotearoa
Māori church boarding schools established
Education Laws impacting on Māori education
School Attendance Act
Native Schools Act
Native Schools Act
Native Trust Ordinance
Te reo Māori
Research from Richard Benton finds te reo is endangered –
Te reo Māori petition (Ngā Tama Toa & Te Reo Māori Society)
Te Kōhanga Reo
Te Whāriki a Te Kōhanga Reo was established
First opened Pukeatua Kōhanga Reo in Wainuiomata
Te Kura o Hoani Waititi Marae
Te Kura o Ruamatā
Te Aho Matua education philosophy identified
Kura Kaupapa legislated
(Te Aho Matua) Amendment Act 1999
Te Aho Matua acknowledged in legislation
Ngā Kura a Iwi
The first gathering of Māori medium iwi based leaders as a governing body
. Benton (1991)
Mana Māori Motuhake: Being Māori
Māori enjoying and achieving education success as Māori
What we heard from Māori-medium communities was that creating supportive environments where learning is embedded in te ao Māori, is critical to the success of Māori learners in kura.
By supporting Māori to learn as Māori, learner themselves become repositories of knowledge with deep Māori philosophical perspectives. Learner are nurtured to become active contributors to their whānau, hapū, iwi and their wider communities.
Mana Atua: Knowledge of whakapapa and relationship to tikanga Māori and Māori knowledge
Mana Atua is where learners develop knowledge of Māori beliefs and values that invoke feelings of peace and wellbeing. Mana Atua affirms that learner have whakapapa to Ranginui (sky father) and Papatūānuku (earth mother). In essence, Mana Atua recognises the divine identity and potential of learners.
Kura Kaupapa Māori acknowledge Mana Atua through Te Ira Tangata (the human essence) where the whole child is nurtured:
- Learners develop physical, spiritual and emotional wellbeing, and an awareness of their uniqueness, their knowledge and respect for themselves and others
- Learners are enthusiastic about learning in a nurturing environment based on traditional Māori values, beliefs and concepts
- Learners value their identity, they are self-confident and display positive self-esteem
- Learners are physically, spiritually and emotionally confident
- Learners accept and respect gender differences
- Learners are caring, considerate and cooperative
- Learners focus on and accept responsibility for their learning.
Ngā Kura ā Iwi express Mana Atua through these philosophies for uri (descendants/offspring):
- Uri Whai Tukuihotanga: Uri are Champions of Cultural Identity
- Uri Whai Mātauranga: Uri are Seekers of Knowledge
- Uri Whai Oranga: Uri are Healthy and Well.
Te Kōhanga Reo reflect Mana Tangata explicitly within Te Whāriki, expressing authentic connection to Māori traditions, beliefs and values, to enhance the wellbeing of mokopuna.
Iwi identity is the foundation for learners, with a curriculum that reflects their identity and reinforces who they are as Māori and as iwi agents of change.
Learning includes iwi narratives, waiata, mōteatea and kīwaha/whakataukī/tongikura which enables learners to locate themselves with reference to their ancestors. Ultimately, Māori-medium provide circumstances where learners are aware of their roles and responsibilities as a whānau member, on the marae and within iwi/community.
Mana Reo: Immersion in te reo Māori me ōna tikanga
Mana Reo is where learners in Māori-medium education are developing skills and knowledge of mana Māori immersed in te reo Māori and tikanga Māori. The mana of te reo Māori is expressed through all activities and there are high expectations that te reo Māori will be a living language. Where possible, te reo Māori is used at home as well as kura. Contrary to popular belief, the English language is not a pre-requisite for success.
Te reo Māori is a critical part of the learning environment and must include tikanga Māori. There is a clear commitment from kōhanga, kura, kaiako, kaimahi, whānau, hapū and iwi to the revitalisation and resurgence of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori. Intergenerational transmission of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori is valued and kura view kaumātua and whānau as key agents of Mana Reo.
Normalises language use: The essence of te reo Māori is communicated in formal and informal situations, in multiple locations (kura, home, sports, marae, abroad), and is used to give full expression to human existence (humour, grief, emotions). Of importance is the use of whānau and kaumātua as te reo Māori repositories, customary narratives, waiata, karakia and kīwaha/tongikura.
Privileges te reo Māori: Environments where te reo Māori is consistently spoken and heard are made a priority in Māori-medium sites. Māori-medium education understand the processes of how languages are acquired and privileges te reo Māori in all learning environments – including the local communities, sports arenas and on national and international trips.
Reflects tikanga Māori: Iwi dialect (as relevant to location) includes the use of waiata, mōteatea, karakia, whakataukī and whakatauākī as normal tenets of language. In addition, the wairua (spirituality) of the language is acknowledged through expressions such as reo aroha and reo manaaki.
Is about revitalisation: The contributions of kuia and kaumātua are valued as key to language revitalisation and transmission. Whānau are committed to the revitalisation of te reo Māori and learners experience rich models of native language and iwi dialect.
Encourages language development: While te reo Māori is prioritised, all languages are critically considered. This includes the analysis of the history of te reo Māori and the impact of the English language. Therefore, the teaching of the English language involves careful planning, ongoing professional development and the application of teaching and learning strategies that ensure language competence.
We started to learn te reo Māori at home and we had no idea that our parents weren’t very confident speakers of the language at that time, because that was the language that they gave to us. We weren’t really aware of the war that they had fought; the path that they had followed in order to become Māori speakers. Our world – well, what we knew – was te ao Māori. RAUKURA
I saw the value of learning te reo and about te ao Māori. It made me warm and comfortable. MANU PĪRERE
Mana Whenua: Tūrangawaewae, ancestral connections and values, relationship to environment, and sense of belonging
A strong relationship to, and identity with, the land is important. Those relationships include an ethic of care in relation to the natural environment, and to the ancestry of land. Mana Whenua supports a sense of belonging and responsibility to land and to people.
At the forefront of Māori-medium education is the acknowledgement and articulation of iwi diversity, tuakiritanga and the roles of tangata whenua/manuhiri. Learners are familiar with ancestral connections, values and beliefs and develop a strong sense of belonging, environmental awareness, responsibility and care. Connection to whānau, hapū, iwi and marae are normal activities. Nurturing the connection of tamariki to their tūrangawaewae provides a sense of belonging, safety and a place in the world that is uniquely theirs as Māori. Tūrangawaewae strengthens their ties to tīpuna, marae, whenua, and the mountains, rivers and waterways that surround and sustain them. Tūrangawaewae is where their identity is born, lived and celebrated.
Mana Whenua and tūrangawaewae are expressed in the use of iwi mita, waiata, whaikōrero mōteatea, kīwaha, tongikura, whakataukī and kōrero tuku iho. The Māori-medium sector uses these often to create a sense of belonging.
Marae are focal learning environments and sites of connectedness. Here, all learners actively experience tikanga (including tuakana/teina) and kawa, while allowing a reciprocal relationship with local tikanga experts. This engagement affirms the roles and responsibilities of tauira on the marae as leaders, as tangata whenua, and as supporters.
Diagram titled "Tūrangawaewae" showing the following:
This is me
Ko au tēnei. He uri nō ngā tīpuna nō ngā mātua (mana tangata)
E tū tangata nei au.
I have a right to be here
He tūranga motuhake e kore e taea te turaki, te koti. Ko au te kākano i ruia mai i Rangiātea. (mana atua)
E tū rangatira nei ahau.
These are my roots
Ka tūhonohono ahau ki ōku tīpuna ki ōku whenua. (mana whenua)
Our school stands tall on tribal land of ART – Atiawa, Raukawa, Toarangatira, supported by the beam of Te Aho Matua. Surrounding us are our marae, the pou of our kura is grounded in the four guiding principles of Whakatupuranga Rau Mano, Generation2000. Our marae is our principal home. WHĀNAU STATEMENT TE RITO
Hau kāinga continue to have a steadfast commitment to upholding the mana of Kīngitanga via the intergenerational transfer of roles and responsibilities on the marae, some multi-dimensional. WHĀNAU STATEMENT BERNARD FERGUSON
Te Aho Matua is about empowering people; it does not suppress people. It acknowledges your whakapapa and whānau – it does not look at the single person, but the whole whānau is able to take part in the kaupapa. RAUKURA
I recall as a student at the kura the strong connections and depth of thinking around ao Māori and Te Aho Matua. RAUKURA
WATCH Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways
What ERO has observed during our research is that tikanga Māori provides an anchor for Māori-medium education. The expression of tikanga Māori results in learners feeling safe and secure and affirms their identify as Māori. Kōhanga and kura provide regular activities for learners that uphold tikanga Māori. Specific tikanga and kawa (formal protocol) are identified as contributing to learner’s wellbeing. These include: ngākau, wairua, aroha, manaaki, tiaki, whanaungatanga, whakapapa, kaupapa, mauritau and karakia.
The values and tikanga of local iwi are deeply embedded. These underpin curriculum, whānau priorities and management. Learners are immersed in the values, history and influence of local iwi and te ao Māori, nurturing confidence in tauira as they engage in a wide range of iwi and Māori contexts.
Māori-medium are actively revitalising tikanga Māori alongside te reo Māori. Te reo Māori is embedded in the practise of tikanga Māori and consistently appear throughout the interviews conducted for Te Kura Huranui. This indicates that the foundation of te reo Māori and tikanga Māori are critical for education.
Expressing tikanga Māori
It is essential for Māori-medium to express a range of kawa and tikanga Māori. These include: tūwhera te ngākau, wairua, aroha, manaaki, mauritau, karakia, whakapapa, tautoko, mahitahi, uaratanga (value systems), taonga tuku iho (intergenerational transmission), whai tikanga, tiaki, mauri tau, āwhi, mahi tahi, ū ki te Kaupapa, love, respect and care.
Kaitiakitanga is a significant tikanga and characteristic for Māori-medium, nurturing the responsibility of tauira to:
- their whānau, hapū, iwi
- tikanga Māori
- mātauranga Māori, and
- the environment.
In this sense manaakitanga as an ethic of care is expressed within and across kōhanga and kura.
Role of tikanga in teaching practice
Māori knowledge and philosophy underpin good teaching practice. These include: kawa, tikanga, tuakana-teina relationships, mahitahi, waiata, haka, kiiwaha, taonga tuku iho, narratives and histories. In addition, values such as aroha, manaaki, tautoko, kaitiakitanga, mauri tau and awhi are fundamental to teaching. Kaiako and kaimahi are competent and knowledgeable in the application of these concepts in teaching and learning where there is a ngākau-wairua (heart and soul) focus for teaching and learning.
Repositories of knowledge
Repositories of knowledge are found embedded in tikanga Māori. Kura explore tikanga Māori through kura ethos, principles and curriculum. Words, phrases, sentences, waiata, mōteatea, kīwaha, tongi, and karakia contain entire bodies of knowledge and are valued as such.
For example, the principles of Kīngitanga are embedded in learners through regular use of tongikura. Therefore, tauira are able to recite and use these freely to express themselves and understand their world. In this way tauira understand their roles as a part of the Kīngitanga movement.
Creating rich learning experiences
Māori-medium education ensures learners have access to good language role modelling, iwi knowledge and dialect, nurturing environments, expressions of the human nature such as aroha, manaaki and humour, as well as situations that give expression to wairua, whatumanawa and hinengaro.
The revitilisation of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori is a responsibility taken on by kaumātua, whānau, hapū, and iwi. Māori-medium education providers also support whānau in this role.
There is a commitment from whānau to actively support Māori-medium. Whānau activities might include: teaching, parent support, supervision, curriculum development, pōwhiri, manaaki manuhiri, and resource development. Ultimately, whānau meet the needs of kura as and when required.
Mahia te mahi hei painga mō te iwi! This tongi of Te Puea Herangi is the guiding philosophy of the kura and upholds the following values: Manaakitia te iwi – we must always provide hospitality in the first instance for, and to, the people. Whāngaingia te tangata – irrespective of who the people are, or where they come from, feed them. Kia mau ki te aroha me te rangimārie – if and when all else fails, hold fast to the value of love, peace and goodwill. WHĀNAU STATEMENT BERNARD FERGUSON
A Raukura is a treasure for the iwi, hapū, kura. We were based on the marae. The kitchen, the wharekai and the wharenui were the classrooms…there were hardly any resources but we used the natural environment, we went outside. There are a lot of lessons from learning on the marae and exploring the environment. RAUKURA
Whanaungatanga: Relationships and connectedness
Across Māori-medium, we found that a strong foundation built on whanaungatanga and ancestral connections meant learners felt secure and had a strong sense of belonging at kura, home and in the wider community. Whakapapa and whanaungatanga underpin all interactions for kura, whānau, kaimahi and learner, with whānau, hapū, iwi and marae communities playing an important role.
Māori-medium relationships are maintained and strengthened with: whānau as experts, whānau commitment, connectedness, community engagement, identity, and kaumātua participation.
Learners experience whānau contributing to their goals and see whānau modelling positive relationships. This contributes to confident learners with a strong sense of belonging and connected relationships.
Māori-medium regard whānau as leaders, key decision makers, expert knowledge holders, critical contributors, role models and committed supporters of transformational education. As decision makers, whānau are described as responsive and having strategic direction. Despite limited resourcing, whānau maintain high expectations for educational outcomes (including te reo), create happy nurturing learning environments and are resilient and committed to quality education and responsive learning experiences in te reo Māori.
Whānau as experts and active supporters
Whānau and the wider community support Māori-medium education provision and contribute to learning. Whānau are knowledge experts and support the kura in terms of curriculum development/delivery. They are key repositories of knowledge and share freely with the kura. Whānau are key drivers of the revitalisation of te reo Māori, tikanga Māori, and mātauranga Māori.
Whānau are committed to learners and their kura
Whānau are described as ‘ringa raupā’, the saying derived from a proverb which refers to ‘callous hands’ – indicating hard work. Whānau express their responsibility through active support of kura events and projects and through their commitment to revitalising te reo Māori. Whānau are committed to kura and ensure whanaungatanga and manaakitanga are felt by all learners.
Connectedness is critical to the operation of kura
Māori-medium has respectful and reciprocal relationships with whānau and communities, exemplifying manaakitanga as the ethic of care. These engagements reinforce that tauira are well supported in their learning journey and in life. Connection gives learners security and a sense of belonging.
Relationships with the natural environment reflect connection to atua Māori and reaffirm this whakapapa relationship.
Active contribution with community occurs in a reciprocal manner, which ensures that learners experience their communities and the social responsibilities associated with their engagement. Whānau actively engage with kura, and kura actively participate in local, national and international communities, local marae and national occasions.
The ethos, values and philosophies of kura reflect and acknowledge tangata whenua, mana whenua and tikanga Māori. These are reflected in notions of Māori citizenship, local belonging, ancestral narratives and tikanga specific to local iwi.
Kaumātua, koroua and kuia are valued as key repositories of knowledge. Their involvement with kura plays a key role in revitalisation and intergenerational transmission. Kaumātua provide guidance for implementing tikanga Māori into practice.
Whānau and kaumātua interact with local marae which gives authentic learning experiences for tauira.
It felt like home. It was a whānau. The whole kura is a whānau... RAUKURA
One unique aspect of Kura Kaupapa Māori is that kaiako readily support whānau, not just the child. That’s a major help. They role modelled to us what was right. RAUKURA
This is a place that they know will look after and nurture them – pouako, kaiāwhina and more who will care for them while they are here. MANU PĪRERE
Intergenerational transmission of Māori language and culture is the norm and we derive a great deal of pride from the knowledge that most of the whānau within our community have three or four generations of Māori speakers where once there were none. WHĀNAU STATEMENT RAUMATA
The Raumata community works extremely hard with lots of love, passion and determination to ensure that each child has opportunities to realise and express their own latent potential, dreams and aspirations.
The whānau is committed to transforming the educational experience into a Māori pathway toward achievement, success and good character. A key principle is that the children will be happy in their learning. We wholeheartedly accept the aho matua responsibility to nurture each child’s spiritual development.
WHĀNAU STATEMENT RAUKURA
I rongo te whānau o Te Waiū i te karanga kia kimihia tētahi huarahi rerekē, hei pupuri i te reo me ngā tikanga o te kāinga, te whakapuāwai i te mātauranga me ngā pūkenga i roto i ā mātau tamariki mokopuna kia taea ai e rātau te tū hei raukura mō ō rātau whānau, hapū, iwi hoki. Mā te werawera me te ū ki te mahi kua puta ngā hua me te wawata, ā tōna wā ka whakahoki mai ngā raukura i ā rātau taonga ki te iwi.
WHĀNAU STATEMENT TE WAIŪ
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Ako: Teaching and learning
The role of teaching and learning itself is identified as a key condition across Māori-medium education, reinforcing the importance of kaiako, kaimahi and whānau in supporting learner success.
Successful teaching and learning is achieved via multiple learning pathways, contextual learning, experiential learning and localised curriculum. Kaiako and kaimahi are essential to environments that are conducive to Māori enjoying and achieving education success as Māori.
- Kaiako and kaimahi implement effective teaching and learning strategies that create the environments and opportunities for responsive education.
- Whānau, hapū and iwi contribute to teaching and learning as repositories of knowledge, defining the aspirations for leaders of the future, and curriculum content that represents who they are.
- Learners are exposed to environments that nurture natural leadership abilities, like the marae. They are considered as individuals, valued for their contributions to the learning of others, nurtured by the aspirations of their whānau, hapu and iwi and guided by a responsive curriculum.
We believe that each child should have a choice in which subjects, skills or teachings they undertake, to best suit their education.
Cathy Dewes – Mema Whakapūmau – Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori
Teaching & learning strategies
Aroha ki te tamaiti underpins all teaching and learning
Kaiako and kaimahi create close relationships with learners where whanaungatanga provides a sense of belonging and a safe nurturing learning environment. These relationships are used to identify the strengths and needs of learners (including tertiary participation where required). Close relationships are paramount as Māori-medium education builds on the importance of a loved learner within a committed community. This also leads to the deeper understanding that education is enhanced by the contribution of others alongside kaiako and kaimahi.
Teaching and learning focus on the whole child
Māori-medium emphasise learner success and the absolute attention to the wider focus on the emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual wellbeing. This approach to teaching and learning is modelled and upheld across the Māori-medium pipeline. There is a commitment and belief that each learner is a taonga and as such they need to be nurtured and their uniqueness fostered. This is achieved through attending to the needs of the whole child. Each mokopuna is viewed as successful and this continues across their education journey.
The main goals are for all children to achieve excellence, secondly, to holdfast the scared knowledge and values passed down to them. The heart is the biggest thing, the power of the heart is much more significant than the mind.
Michelle Ohia – Kaiako, Ngā Taiātea Wharekura
Kaiako and kaimahi are skilled and knowledgeable and use a range of strategies to nurture learners. Organised learning and team preparedness are strong features in Māori-medium education, as well as sound research and whānau-based learning. This is influenced by te ao Māori expectations.
Kaiako and kaimahi actively undertake professional development for effective teaching and learning strategies. This includes knowledge of Māori and iwi-based narratives that guide teaching. For example, kaiako use Kīngitanga to teach learners of their historical and genealogical connections with others so that they understand and value those relationships.
For us, excellence is strength in the language, in the customs, in the protocols. They are adept at managing meetings and being hospitable to people on the marae.
We’re able to call into the marae when there’s meetings involving the iwi, the marae people will contact us and some of our students will be sent to the marae to help with the work of the kitchen, the singing, the lamenting, because our youth have excellent memories and have memorised all the laments.
Henarata Ham, Tumuaki, Te Aitanga a Hauiti, Ngāti Porou
Experiential learning environments
A number of critical learning environments founded in te reo Māori are transformational experiences for learners. Learning spaces include: marae, iwi kaupapa (Koroneihana), Manu Kōrero, kura reo, wānanga, and kapa haka. These provide meaningful contexts where te reo Māori is embedded and self-identity, self-value, self-confidence is affirmed allowing tauira to give full expression to te reo Māori, in te reo Māori. These environments develop confidence in learners to actively connect to their wider communities.
Firstly, we must learn to look at the world around us, the benefits of our world, its biggest and its greatest, which is the power of the gods passed down to us, the power of the people and the land and the ocean. Teaching these things to the children enable them to stand proud as Māori, to stand proud as Ngāti Porou, so the whānau can stand proud and be proud of the homeland.
Campbell Dewes, Tumuaki, Kawakawa Mai Tawhiti
The role of whānau in teaching and learning
Whānau engagement in the direction of Māori-medium education, as well as teaching and learning is key for high quality education. Kura value whānau members for their contributions to teaching and learning and to the development of teaching curriculum within kura.
Whānau members are welcomed as knowledge experts who participate in teaching and learning, while hapū and iwi provide in-depth curriculum areas (such as iwi-based tikanga and kōrero tuku iho). Kaumātua, kuia and koroua are critical to the intergenerational transmission of language and knowledge. Kaumātua are positive role models for learners – as spiritual pillars, native speakers of iwi dialect and repositories of traditional knowledge. Kaumātua provide rich learning experiences.
It was due to our kaiako protecting us, teaching us te reo, teaching us tikanga and having compassion and empathy. We were surrounded by aroha and everything that entails. RAUKURA
There was no difference between kaiako and whānau – e rua, e rua. RAUKURA
We as kaiako, board members and whānau members can all see ourselves as parents to the children. RAUKURA
Learning is best located in authenticity, plan for it! Students learn best when they experience the learning rather than learning about an experience. It is during authentic learning experiences that latent talent is exposed to be nurtured immediately or at a later point in time. WHĀNAU STATEMENT BERNARD FERGUSON
We were all connected somehow, with each other as tauira, with our kaiako, with our staff and our wider whānau community. It was awesome. MANU PĪRERE
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Kanohi Whakakite | Leaders as visionaries
A common condition present in Māori-medium education is leaders as visionaries. Leadership is effective, strategic, aspirational, inspirational and innovative, and they encourage these characteristics among staff.
Understanding and implementing tikanga Māori and kawa are key aspects of leadership. Leaders must have a knowledge of regional expectations and have a responsibility to uphold those expectations. Leadership is aware of regional and iwi-based tikanga Māori, iwi histories, and ancestral narratives. Leadership have knowledge of, and participate in, key regional/iwi events.
Leaders are champions of:
- The revitalisation of te reo Māori and tikanga Māori
- The transformation of whānau, and successful educational outcomes for learner, grounded
in te ao Māori
- Being role models of affection and empathy for others, supportive of learner aspirations.
Leadership is transformational, committed, visible, respectful and reflective. Te Aho Matua, iwi-based tikanga and kawa such as Kīngitanga or ancestral narratives such as Ngātoroirangi provide clear principles for leadership. Leadership in accordance to tikanga Māori is exemplified in the Te Rito Whānau Statement:
Ko tā te rangatira mahi, he manaaki (a leader leads by kindness)
Champions of revitalisation
Māori-medium education is founded in strategies that nurture the holistic wellbeing of learners. Original leadership established these strategies to guide the teaching and learning pathways of Māori-medium provision. All kura members are considered revitalisation leaders who are committed to the intergenerational transmission of te reo Māori and tikanga Māori.
Characteristics of leadership are explicitly stated in Māori-medium strategies.
He [reference to principal] has a vision for sustainability and actively supports Raukura to return as kaiako to contribute to the longevity of the kura. He is future-focused and committed to creating positive outcomes for learners. Learners are encouraged to become life-long learners. RAUKURA
Leaders lead by example, are positive role models, have great community relationships and utilise Māori philosophy to guide them.
He [reference to principal] was always there for the kaupapa, nothing below. Kaupapa was at the forefront and we saw that not in what he said but what he did. This definitely was seen in his leadership and the way he held himself. MANU PĪRERE
Leadership embed local principles in kura to ensure that learners can express themselves through local knowledges.
Leadership: whanaungatanga and connectedness
Leaders have an intimate understanding of, and actively practise whanaungatanga. Kaiako, kaimahi and tumuaki are well known within the local and wider communities and maintain key relationships in the community. Ultimately, leadership acts in service to whānau, iwi and communities.
Growing whānau leadership
Leadership builds capability across whānau and encourages distributive, sustainable and collective decision making. Whānau collectively govern and provide active guidance. Whānau are key decision makers committed to high expectations for educational success.
Leadership is described as:
- Ringa raupā: Derived from a proverb that identifies work ethic and active engagement
- Pukumahi mō te kaupapa: Working hard for a common purpose
- Mahitahi: Working collaboratively
- Whanaungatanga: Nurturing of relationships.
A range of contextual learning environments (including marae and other iwi occasions) provide whānau with rich learning experiences that demonstrate leadership in action and for the role-modelling of leadership by whānau and learner.
It was left to us to lead these things and when we got to the marae, we already knew how to do it all. RAUKURA
Although many of us have left kura, we are still greeted and treated as their own [kura staff]. The whānau connection is never severed, ki te kotahi te kākaho, ka whati, ki te kāpuia, e kore e whati. That is one thing of many I could mention that personified our kura environment. With the teachers and leadership shown. MANU PĪRERE
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Ngā Kitenga me ngā Āheinga Anamata: Insights & Future opportunities
Māori-medium education is a transformative learning environment for Māori. From their inception, Māori-medium sites sought to transform learner, whānau, hapū and iwi by revitalising te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori at kōhanga, kura, and in the home.
There are high expectations among Māori-medium kura for te reo Māori to be a living language and this is upheld by leadership, kaiako, kaimahi whānau, kaumātua and learners.
Māori-medium has a collective responsibility for Māori enjoying and achieving Māori success as Māori. The strategies, guiding principles, outcome domains, goals and competencies for Māori success are found in Te Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori Te Aho Matua and Ngā Kura ā Iwi.
Across all areas of enquiry there are five repeating conditions that are found in kura settings for Māori enjoying and achieving education success as Māori.
- Mana Māori Motuhake: Being Māori
- Mana Atua
- Mana Whenua
- Mana Reo
A condition underpinning cultural aspects of being Māori and living as Māori. Mana Māori Motuhake is the expression of ancestral relationships to Mana Atua, Mana Whenua, Mana Reo and authentic identity as Māori.
- Tikanga Maōri
- Māori values
- Intergenerational revitalisation
- Collective responsibility
A condition that gives expression to being Māori and living Māori. Tikanga Māori gives essential information about how and why kura (and whānau) operate and function as they do.
- Whanaungatanga: Relationships & connectedness
- Whānau as experts
- Whānau commitment
- Community Engagement
- Kaumātua involvement
A condition that acknowledges close and diverse relationships. Whanaungatanga expresses the reciprocal connections between kura, whānau, kaumātua, hapū, iwi and wider communities.
- Ako: Teaching & Learning
- Focus is on the whole child
- Contextual teaching and learning
- High quality provision
- Whānau contribute to teaching and learning
Kaiako and kaimahi create close relationships with learners where whanaungatanga provides a sense of belonging and a safe nurturing learning environment.
- Kanohi Whakakite: Leaders as visionaries
- Champions of revitalisation
- Role models in the community
- Ringa raupā
- Pukumahi mō te kaupapa
Leadership is effective, strategic, aspirational, inspirational and innovative, and they encourage these characteristics among staff.
As well as these five conditions for Māori success as Māori in kura, there are four characteristics
that are also shared across Māori-medium education.
- Social-political history: Kura acknowledge the history of Aotearoa/New Zealand and are committed to producing successful outcomes
- Philosophy: Kura operate on philosophies that are founded in ‘being Māori’ and tikanga Māori
- Māori education goals: Kura naturally implement national strategies for Māori educational success
- Kura are under-resourced: Kura whānau play a huge role in supporting and contributing to kura across all areas. Tumuaki and kaiako often create their own fit-for-purpose teaching and learning resources and many kura are still awaiting infrastructure funding to modernise or even to stabilise their building sites. Kura capacity is limited across the board including a teacher shortage – which impacts on kura ability to engage effectively and meaningfully with government agencies.
Despite the widespread lack of resourcing, Māori-medium education has maintained nurturing learning environments with excellent outcomes for Māori learners.
Through individual philosophies and common conditions of Mana Māori Motuhake, Tikanga Māori, Whanaungatanga, Ako: Teaching & Learning and Kanohi Whakakite: Leaders as visionaries, Māori-medium education remains focused on revitalising te reo Māori, te ao Māori and consequently the revitalisation of the Māori spirit. RAUKURA
I remember that time, it was difficult. The building that was set aside for us was run down. When it rained, it came inside. The walls and roof were wet. But it was nothing to us. We didn’t know anything different. We didn’t know another way, because there was no other way. RAUKURA
Many of our Raukura are returning to the kura as kaiako, like myself. To make a contribution and uphold Te Aho Matua as I experienced it, to preserve the kaupapa. RAUKURA
My generation was the first who were taught and grew up in te reo Māori. Those are the outcomes of the Whakatupuranga Rua Mano initiative. We were constantly reminded that we were the first graduates of Whakatupuranga Rua Mano. There were very few Māori speakers in the community at that time. There are many now, everywhere. When you go to the Four Square, the shopkeeper speaks Māori. That aspect of the community has changed drastically, from the time when I was a baby until now. RAUKURA
Our teachers were always there to lend a hand even if they had to go out of their own way, they would always take our needs in to account and I always felt safe and comforted knowing that. MANU PĪRERE
Successful kura are not merely concerned with academic achievement, but rather they are deeply committed to nurturing and developing children of exceptional character. Successful kura are concerned with long term aspirations for their children, not merely during their compulsory schooling years but beyond to their lives as adults and parents.
Graduates of these kura are truly outstanding human beings; young people of great character who in every way exemplify the hopes and dreams of their people. TĀKAO, ET AL, 2010, P.15
Whakamutunga | Conclusion
For the duration of this project, ERO has been privileged to work with Māori, in the Māori-medium space, who have given so generously of their time to help us share their story.
This study clearly shows that Māori-medium education provides nurturing learning environments with excellent outcomes for Māori learners. It highlights the resourceful and determination of early founders, which remains a constant through the communities of leaders, tumuaki, kaiako, whānau, hapū and iwi who uplift and support Māori-medium sites throughout Aotearoa today.
While it is evident that different guiding philosophies are present across the Māori-medium sector, Te Kura Huanui: The treasures of successful pathways identifies the common conditions in which Māori enjoy and achieve educational success: Mana Māori Motuhake: Being Māori, Tikanga Māori, Whangaungatanga, Ako: Teaching and Learning and Leaders as Visionaries.
Interviews with Raukura, Manu Pīrere and whānau clearly show us that learning in Māori-medium education produces graduates who are highly successful and confident in their identity as Māori. Raukura and Manu Pīrere express a deep sense of belonging to te ao Māori, and contribute significantly to their whānau, hapū and iwi and to the ongoing revitalisation of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga Māori in Aotearoa.
This research showcases the vision and leadership of those that have pioneered a strong, indigenous and uniquely Māori education system.
This vision and self-determination, alongside whānau, hapu and iwi solidarity, has led to a transformational education system which ensures Māori children have access to quality teaching and learning that reflects and privileges their culture, language and identity.
Through the stories of Raukura and Manu Pīrere we see the impact early founders of the Māori-medium movement, and those that carry on their work today, have made on the future of Māori education in New Zealand.
Future work is clearly needed to ensure Māori-Medium sites are supported, resourced and enabled to continue delivering a strong and effective education pathway for Māori learners.
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