The PPTA says there have been gains for some Māori-medium education schools under Hekia Parata. But Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori Deputy Head Rawiri Wright says he hopes their concerns regarding National Standards will be resolved with the new Education Minister.
Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori had many aspirations when Hekia Parata became the first Māori woman Minister of Education but some are yet to be resolved.
Wright says, “Our unresolved issue is regarding National Standards. We didn't agree to it before she became the Minister of Education and we still don't. However, we hope we will have an opportunity to meet and come to an agreement.”
PPTA President Angela Roberts commends the minister's resolve to improve the education success of Māori students including NCEA.
“She's really focussed the attention of the sector, and she's really supported schools of special character, our kura to support each other and to really set the sights high for Māori students.”
Hekia Parata became Education Minister in 2011. Both Angela and Rawiri acknowledge that much still needs to be done to improve the education of Māori in mainstream and Māori medium schools.
“The challenge we have is that some of the legislation that has come in while she has been a minister, such as that that enables charter schools, undermines some of the amazing work that is happening in our schools for our Māori students,” says Roberts.
Wright says, “The ongoing issue of governance within the education sector remains in the hands of non-Māori for our betterment, so they say. We of Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori say the success of Te Aho Matua Māori education schools remain with us.”
Te Rūnanga Nui o Ngā Kura Kaupapa Māori is waiting on confirmation from the minister to meet to resolve their concerns.