The Māori education strategy: Ka Hikitia - Accelerating Success 2013 -2017

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The guiding principles of Ka Hikitia

Five principles guide:

Ka Hikitia -Accelerating Success 2013-2017

  • Treaty of Waitangi
    • Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013–2017 gives expression to how the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi (the Treaty) are applied in education. The rights and duties that stem from the principles of the Treaty include ensuring the position of Māori is considered fairly when developing policies and funding.

      The Treaty provides a context for the relationship between the Crown, iwi and Māori. Ensuring Māori students enjoy and achieve education success as Māori is a joint responsibility of the Crown (represented by the Ministry of Education and other education sector agencies/departments) and iwi, hapū and whānau.

      Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013–2017 emphasises the power of collaboration and the value of working closely with iwi and Māori organisations to lift the performance of the education system.

      For education professionals, collaboration is about creating ways for whānau, hapū, iwi, Māori organisations and communities to contribute to what and how Māori students learn, as well as working together to provide support for Māori students’ learning.

  • Māori potential approach
    • Every Māori student has the potential to make a valuable social, cultural and economic contribution to the well-being of their whānau, hapū, iwi and community and to New Zealand as a whole. A core principle of Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013–2017 is that all Māori students have the potential to excel and be successful.

      Students who are expected to achieve and who have high (but not unrealistic) expectations of themselves are more likely to succeed. Education sector professionals can hold lower expectations for Māori students and this can be detrimental to their learning and achievement.1

      Students, parents, whānau, hapū, iwi, Māori organisations, communities, peers, and education and vocational training sector professionals must share high expectations for Māori students to achieve. Sometimes this means challenging longstanding beliefs and stereotypes.

      The Māori potential approach2 means:

      Less focus onMore focus on
      • remedying deficit
      • problems of dysfunction
      • government intervention
      • targeting deficit
      • Māori as a minority
      • realising potential
      • identifying opportunity
      • investing in people and local
      • solutions, communities or networks of provision
      • tailoring education to the student
      • indigeneity and distinctiveness
      • collaborating and co-constructing.
  • Ako—a two-way teaching and learning process
    • Quality teaching is the most important influence that the education system can have on student achievement. Effective teaching and learning depends on the relationship between the teacher and student, and the teacher’s ability to engage and motivate the students.3

      Ako is a dynamic form of learning. Ako describes a teaching and learning relationship where the educator is also learning from the student in a two-way process and where educators’ practices are informed by the latest research and are both deliberate and reflective.4 Ako is grounded in the principle of reciprocity and also recognises that students and their whānau cannot be separated.

      For those working in government, ako is about seeking the perspectives of Māori students, parents, whānau, hapū, iwi and Māori organisations when we do our work. This is an important way to ensure policies and activities take account of identity, language, culture, and what Māori know and value.

      Ako describes a teaching and learning relationship where the educator is also learning from the student in a two-way process.

  • Identity, language and culture count
    • There is a strong link between well-being and achievement. Students’ well-being is strongly influenced by a clear sense of identity, and access and exposure to their own language and culture. Students do better in education when what and how they learn reflects and positively reinforces where they come from, what they value and what they already know. Learning needs to connect with students’ existing knowledge.5 Identity, language and culture are an asset and a foundation of knowledge on which to build and celebrate learning and success.

      Māori identity, language and culture recognises, acknowledges and validates Māori students as Māori. Māori organisations, hapū, whānau, iwi, parents and students are the kaitiaki (guardians) of Māori identity, language and culture.

      Understanding how identity, language and culture impact on Māori students’ learning and responding to this requires all stakeholders to develop a greater understanding of their own identity, language and culture and the ways in which they shape their lives.6

      Strong collaboration between stakeholders on ways to take account of identity, language and culture in their work is essential to Māori enjoying and achieving education success as Māori.

      Students do better in education when what and how they learn reflects and positively reinforces where they come from, what they value and what they already know. Learning needs to connect with students’ existing knowledge.

  • Productive partnerships
    • A productive partnership in education means a two-way relationship leading to and generating shared action, outcomes and solutions. Productive partnerships are based on mutual respect, understanding and shared aspirations. They are formed by acknowledging, understanding and celebrating similarities and differences.

      For Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013– 2017 to be successful, stakeholders must form productive partnerships where there is an ongoing exchange of knowledge and information, and where everybody contributes to achieving the goals.

      A productive partnership starts with the understanding that Māori children and students are connected to whānau and should not be viewed or treated as separate, isolated or disconnected. Parents and whānau must be involved in conversations about their children and their learning. They need accessible, evidence-based information on how to support their children’s learning and success.7

      The Ministry of Education, ERO, education agencies, councils and boards must form productive partnerships with iwi, Māori organisations, parents, whānau, hapū and communities so they can play a greater role in influencing better educational outcomes for Māori students.8

      These partnerships require understanding and acknowledgement of the value of Māori identity, language and culture, and the aspirations of Māori for culture, society, the economy and the environment.

      For education professionals and providers, productive partnerships require greater responsiveness and accountability to students, whānau, hapū, iwi, Māori organisations and communities.

      A productive partnership starts by understanding that Māori children and students are connected to whānau and should not be viewed or treated as separate, isolated or disconnected.