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Church Visit Will Highlight Education

Su’a William
Pacific Island Affairs Spokesperson
MP for Mangere

3 December 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT

Church Visit Will Highlight Education

Leaders of The Congregational Christian Church of Samoa - one of New Zealand’s oldest Pacific churches - will visit Parliament tomorrow to celebrate 50 years of service to the community.

Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio, will welcome the congregation and discuss the church’s efforts to further Pacific bilingual education.

“The Congregational Christian Church of Samoa or Ekalesia Faapotopotoga Kerisiano Samoa - EFKS, as it is commonly known, has a proud history of leadership in the Pacific community, particularly in education,” Su’a William Sio said.

“Education Minister Hekia Parata’s Pacific Education Plan, released last week, was a disappointment to the Pacific community.

“The National-led government has continually under-resourced bilingual education and Pasifika children are suffering.

“It is fitting then that church leaders will launch a book about the history of the church in Samoan and English tomorrow as a part of the celebrations.

“I look forward to talking with church leaders about their efforts to maintain and strengthen the Samoan language through their bilingual worship services, their Samoan kindergartens, language nests and homework centres.

“Currently around 63 per cent of Samoans are bilingual compared with 18 per cent of the New Zealand population at large.

“Some of that success must be attributed to the efforts of EFKS whose community education programmes are enjoyed by 73 congregations from Auckland to Invercargill,” Su’a William Sio said.

Tuesday 4 December 2012

3:30pm Labour MP Su’a William Sio welcomes leaders of The Congregational Christian Church of Samoa to the Banquet Hall, Parliament House.
3:45pm Su’a Willam Sio gives opening address.



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