Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


Focus on Education Goals for Pacific Children


Friday, 4 August 2000

Focus on Education Goals for Pacific Children

Improving the education outcomes for Pacific children in New Zealand was being kept in sharp focus by policy-makers within his Ministry, the Secretary for Education Howard Fancy said today.

"Your top students are among the best in New Zealand - but in education too many children do not realise their potential," Howard Fancy told the Pacific Waves Conference at the Christchurch Convention Centre (Friday 4 August).

"It is of very serious concern that one in every four Pacific students leaves school with no education qualifications at all. Eliminating that gap must be a major goal."

"The Ministry of Education is strongly focussed on the need to increase participation in pre-school education, and to get the early learning foundations right," said Howard Fancy.

"For example, a key priority is to ensure that all Pacific children get a very strong basis in their first language - whether that language be English or a Pacific language.

"Support for parents, increased participation in early childhood education and raising the quality of early childhood provision are all important areas of work for us at present.

"We are taking a hard look at all of the barriers to early childhood that exist, and at how these can be overcome.

"This involves close co-operation with both the education sector and with the Pacific communities themselves to fund workable solutions.

"The importance of good consultation and dialogue with Pacific communities, for example, was evident from the enormous input and insights we gained from working with their representatives in the development of the Pacific teacher supply and recruitment strategy.

"We gained valuable insights into the reasons why students may not be attracted into teaching, for example, and how such barriers can be overcome. We were given better ways to communicate with potential teachers.

"As a policy maker, it is important to have a good understanding of the aspirations of the different Pacific communities and their cultures and languages. This is helping us to design and implement policies in ways that are relevant and effective for those communities and for their children.

"It is through our role in such areas as developing curriculum material or focussing on teacher professional development that we can create contexts that meet the specific needs of our Pacific children.

"The introduction of a Samoan language curriculum and the work that is now taking place to develop a Cook Islands language curriculum are important steps towards supporting the strong links between language and identity.

"Educational success requires getting many things right. It requires good schools, good early childhood centres and good teachers. It needs parents and communities valuing and supporting the education of their children. It requires strong and effective partnerships between educators, parents and communities. It also requires Government agencies, educators and communities to work together effectively.

"It needs teaching practices and education policies that understand Pacific students, their culture and their ways of doing things, helping them to gain the skills, knowledge and attitudes they need to succeed in a fast moving and knowledge-based world.

"It is also important that those students have confidence in themselves, their identity and their culture and that our education system supports and encourages this.

"Education success is much more likely when education policies and practices successfully integrate the acquisition of skills and knowledge with elements of culture and identity," Howard Fancy said.


Enquiries: Simone Thompson Tel: (04) 471 6080

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


NZ On Air TV Funding: More Comedy Comes Out Of The Shadows

Paranormal Event Response Unit is a series conceived by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi as a TV spin-off from their highly acclaimed feature film What We Do In The Shadows. More>>


Mars News: Winners Announced For The 2016 Apra Silver Scroll Awards

Wellington singer-songwriter and internationally acclaimed musician Thomas Oliver has won the 2016 APRA Silver Scroll Award with his captivating love song ‘If I Move To Mars’. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Salt River Songs by Sam Hunt

Colin Hogg, a longtime comrade of Sam, writes in his Introduction that, ‘There is a lot of death in this collection of new poems by my friend Sam Hunt. It’s easier to count the poems here that don’t deal with the great destroyer than it is to point to the ones that do.’ More>>

Electronica: Restoring The World’s First Recorded Computer Music

University of Canterbury Distinguished Professor Jack Copeland and UC alumni and composer Jason Long have restored the earliest known recording of computer-generated music, created more than 65 years ago using programming techniques devised by Alan Turing. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Almost Getting Away With Murder

The Black Widow by Lee-Anne Cartier: Lee-Anne Cartier is the sister of the Christchurch man found to have been murdered by his wife, Helen Milner, after an initial assumption by police that his death, in 2009, was suicide. More>>

Howard Davis: Triple Echo - The Malevich/Reinhardt/Hotere Nexus

Howard Davis: The current juxtaposition of works by Ralph Hotere and Ad Reinhardt at Te Papa perfectly exemplifies Jean Michel Massing's preoccupation with the transmigration of imagery in a remarkable triple echo effect... More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news