Te Rangi Āniwaniwa - Feature

By Harata Brown
  • Northland

According to Haami Piripi, “Although there were the battles of past time, we must look to the future, that thought must be in our minds all the time, so that we can hear, understand and create a great environment for the next generations.”

Before the end of term 2, many people turned out to celebrate 21 years since the birth of Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Te Rangi Āniwaniwa in the Far North.

According to Waha Tauhara Akonga o Mua, “There have been many students who've left this school to find their own pathways.  For them and their families, indeed it's right for us ‘former students’ to return and celebrate this milestone for our school because it was the school who encouraged us to find those pathways.”

Te Rangi Āniwaniwa grew out of the Ngāti Kahu, Te Aupōuri and Te Rarawa Trust.  It was the trust who established Āniwaniwa Kōkiri Centre, a former Advanced Training Centre based in the region, it was the mothers of those involved in the Kōkiri, who helped establish Āniwaniwa Kōhanga Reo.

Parents still wanted more for their children, so that they could continue to learn in Te Reo Māori.

It took time for Te Rangi Āniwaniwa to gain Kura Kaupapa Māori Status, but that didn't keep the school from going on.  Through Hilda Halkyard-Harawira completing a Master’s Degree at Auckland University, the dream to create a Wharekura came to fruition.

There were three founding Wharekura students, their classroom was set up in a hallway.  But, later on in the early 2000's, the decile 1 school was one of the top 5 schools in NZ. 

Although it costs thousands to build the first indoor heated pool in the Far North, and the Ministry of Education did not agree with it being built at Te Rangi Āniwaniwa, the pool was opened in 2003. 

Whānau of Te Rangi Āniwaniwa continued the good work by establishing two full-sized indoor basketball courts at Te Rangi Āniwaniwa.

Ruruhi Heihei a former head girl of the school has started her first year as a year 4-5 teacher at the Kura Kaupapa, one of the biggest highlights for her celebrating 21 years of Te Rangi Āniwaniwa is returning home to help nurture the up and coming leaders, as well as work alongside her mum who is also a teacher here at Te Rangi Āniwaniwa.  

As those who affiliate to Te Rangi Āniwaniwa gather for the schools' 21st year celebration, it must be asked, what are their hopes for the school as it looks to the future.