Ngā Haeata Mātauranga: Annual Report on Māori Education 2004

Publication Details

This report published annually provides an overview of Maori education, from early childhood to the tertiary sector. It includes initiatives specifically directed to Maori. Statistical analysis is also included.

Author(s): Group Māori, Ministry of Education

Date Published: April 2005

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This report is available as a download (please refer to the 'Downloads' inset box).  The 'Where to Find Out More inset box has links to related publications/ information that may be of interest.  Individual chapters are available as downloads on this webpage (below).

Executive Summary

Ngā Haeata Mātauranga – Annual Report on Māori Education, 2004 provides an overview of Māori education, from early childhood through to the tertiary sector. The report provides discussion on key themes influencing the Ministry of Education's approach towards Māori education as articulated in the Māori Education Strategy (refer to chapter 1). It includes an update on policies and programmes that are designed to improve educational outcomes for all learners, including Māori. It refers to the latest research evidence and data to highlight key issues and achievements in Māori education.

The Ministry's direction for Māori education continues to be informed by the government's outcomes and targets for Māori education (see appendix 1), the government's Education Priorities, the Ministry's Statement of Intent 2004-2009, the strategic work arising from the Hui Taumata Mātauranga, and the growing number of education partnerships forged among iwi/Māori and the Ministry. Key areas of focus for Māori education continue to be:

  • supporting the high-quality provision of kaupapa mātauranga Māori across all sectors
  • supporting high levels of achievement by all Māori school leavers
  • encouraging Māori participation in lifelong learning
  • improving the engagement of whānau, hapū, iwi and Māori communities in education.

How are we going?

Ensuring the provision of kaupapa mātauranga Māori is well supported and of a high quality, so learners actively participate and achieve within this context, is a priority.

Kaupapa mātauranga Māori provision includes education within total immersion settings such as kōhanga reo, kura kaupapa Māori, bilingual and immersion classes in mainstream schools, and wānanga.

The number of Māori learners attending kaupapa mātauranga Māori has been steady over the past few years in both the early childhood education and school sectors. The participation rate of Māori students in kaupapa Māori-based tertiary organisations such as wānanga has increased dramatically. Achievement is also positive with more students in wharekura and bilingual schools achieving an NCEA qualification in 2003, some of whom achieved qualifications at levels above their year of schooling.

These achievements are significant given the high demand for curriculum teaching and learning resources in te reo Māori and a small pool of qualified teachers who can effectively teach in these settings.

Building a high-quality infrastructure to support kaupapa mātauranga Māori in the compulsory sector is a growing priority. This work includes providing ICT support for wharekura, and the continued development of teaching and learning resources and materials. The curriculum for kaupapa mātauranga Māori, Te Marautanga, is being reviewed in partnership with the sector and wider community to ensure its relevance and ownership by the sector. The use of assessment tools and exemplars to support learning in te reo Māori continued in 2004.

Encouraging the participation of Māori children and their whānau in high-quality early childhood education continues to be a key priority.

Major changes to early childhood education funding was the most significant development in 2004, with increased funding being made available to services in 2005, and 20 hours of free early childhood education being made available to three and four-year-old children in teacher-led community based services from 2007. These changes, alongside programmes to increase the supply of high-quality services, will contribute to increased participation by Māori in early childhood education during the next few years.

During the past year a number of initiatives got under way to support high-quality early childhood education, including increasing the number of qualified teachers, developing learning exemplars for early childhood education, establishing four new centres of innovation, and reviewing the regulatory framework on which the current early childhood system is based.

While it is difficult to measure the impact of these initiatives on participation, Māori early childhood education enrolments continued to increase, although the Māori participation rate in early childhood education is still lower than that of non-Māori.

Ensuring Māori students leave school with the skills, knowledge and qualifications they need to successfully participate in, and contribute to, society continues to be a focus.

Māori are high achievers, as shown by international survey results, NCEA achievement data and giftedness indicators. However, there are still far too many Māori learners that are not reaching their potential and leaving school before they are 16. Supporting Māori learners to participate in school and engage in learning requires a systematic and strategic approach, which builds on the knowledge we have of what works in what circumstances and the key role teachers and families play in supporting educational achievement.

The student engagement strategy provides a broad framework to help support the needs of students at risk of educational underachievement and includes a number of initiatives, such as the Suspensions Reduction Initiative, truancy initiatives, and alternative education programmes. The Schooling Strategy, the Curriculum Project, the Literacy and Numeracy Strategy, and the Assessment Strategy will also help guide the sector to meet the learning needs of all students, including Māori learners.

An extensive programme of work is under way to support the range of high-quality teaching and learning initiatives. For example, a number of initiatives are focusing on raising teachers' expectations of Māori learners, encouraging them to better use assessment information and research to inform their teaching practice. Another important area of focus is supporting and developing the professional capability and leadership of educators working with Māori learners and increasing the supply of high-quality Māori teachers.

Ensuring Māori are engaged in learning at all levels of tertiary education is fundamental to the growth of society and to the creation of new knowledge.

Māori, as a growing proportion of the population, play a key role in the future of the country. Their ability to engage in learning throughout their lives and achieve tertiary qualifications at higher levels will influence the extent to which they can positively contribute to society as Māori and as New Zealanders in the future.

Over the past four years, Māori went from being under-represented at all levels in tertiary education to having the highest participation rates of any ethnic group in the country. Between 1998 and 2003, around 36,000 Māori students entered tertiary education. Most of these students entered tertiary education for the first time, had no or low school qualifications, were women, and were over the age of 25. Most of the growth was in certificate-level qualifications at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.

The number of Māori completing qualifications more than doubled between 1998 and 2003. The biggest increase in students completing qualifications was within wānanga, with completions increasing from fewer than 2,000 in 2001 to nearly 14,000 in 2003. Māori are also completing their qualifications and going on to further study.

There are a range of pathways learners can take in tertiary education to build their knowledge and foundation skills. The options include industry training, foundation skill programmes such as Youth Training and Training Opportunities, and adult and community education programmes. Māori continued to be strongly represented across all these programmes and outcome data showed that these programmes were leading to employment and/or further study for Māori learners.

Māori participation in higher levels of tertiary study continues to grow, with the number of doctorates completed each year by Māori increasing from seven in 1998 to 29 in 2003. Māori are also playing a crucial role in creating new knowledge through research, as shown through the work being progressed through Ngā Pae o Te Maramatanga and the results from the Performance-Based Research Fund.

A fundamental aspect of the government's approach to Māori education is the fostering and support for the increased involvement and authority of Māori in education at all levels.

Māori as parents and as members of broader collectives such as whānau, hapū, and iwi have a crucial role to play in supporting the participation and achievement of Māori learners. As members of these collectives, Māori can influence the education system by working with the Ministry of Education, with local education providers, and with Māori whānau to support initiatives that promote learning and achievement for all children, including Māori children. Education partnerships between iwi and the Ministry are one example of how organisations, previously working in isolation from one other, can work together to improve Māori educational outcomes.

As parents and whanau members, Māori are in a position to strongly influence their children's learning in the home and at school by forming positive and empowering relationships with educators. Over the past year a number of initiatives sought to support learning in the home and strengthen relationships among parents, whānau and school staff. Initiatives included parent support and development programmes and parent mentoring initiatives. Providing information is also an important way of engaging parents and whānau to support learning and a number of new initiatives commenced in 2004 to further this aim.

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Ngā Haeata Mātauranga: Annual Report on Māori Education
Individual Chapters

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