A charter school is seen as a model of high achievement for families in Whangarei. After opening its doors as a secondary school only seventh months ago, Te Kāpehu Whetū has now received government support to create a primary school under its umbrella.
They're a charter school with a focus on immersing their students in the teachings of Ngāpuhi and now they have the support of Government to build a primary school.
With only days until the national election, the voice of the anti-charter school brigade are to the fore again but the principal says the charter school policy has given them the opportunity to create their own educational pathway.
Principal Dr Nathan Matthews says, “Charter schools have the power to determine their curriculum. At this school, the Māori language and culture are paramount and we follow the directive laid out by Mason Durie and others to be Māori and be leaders. That’s something that mainstream schools in this city can't do.”
Called Te Kāpehu Whetū, this school was born from the Academy of A Company of the 28th Māori Battalion. Now they look ahead to opening a charter school for primary students with a directive from the minister that they must produce.
Dr Nathan Mathews says, “We now have two approved charter schools so the word is to perform to a high level and that’s of utmost importance for all of us at this school and all the charter schools.”