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Māori Party Announce Policy To Transform Education System

The Māori Party has today announced their education and training policy, which will transform the way tamariki Māori are educated in Aotearoa through resourcing and valuing kaupapa Māori education, overhauling the mainstream Pākehā system, and creating pathways for school leavers.

“The Māori Party vision for education is to ensure that all tamariki are supported to be themselves and receive high-quality education that sets them on the pathway to achieve their dreams, regardless of where they go to school,” said Co-leader and Te Tai Hauāuru candidate Debbie Ngarewa-Packer.

“Fundamental change is required to ensure that Māori can fulfil their potential. No one can realise their aspirations unless they know who they are, where they come from, and are proud of their culture and heritage.

“We know that Māori parents want Māori environments for their tamariki as that is the only way they can be sure that their tamariki will be safe and empowered to be who they are. The Māori Party will ensure that Māori medium education is funded and resourced through equity-based funding models.

“Due to a huge range of factors including availability and resourcing, most Māori children are still in mainstream education. That’s why we have policy to overhaul the mainstream Pākehā system and support Māori students and teachers by tackling inequity, racism and the digital divide head on.

“For young people leaving school and not going on to tertiary education, there are too few pathways into well-paid employment. We will put a major focus on increasing placements in apprenticeships, training schemes, and cadetships,” said Mrs Ngarewa-Packer.

In summary, the Māori Party will:

Resource and value kaupapa Māori education

  1. Ensure all Māori medium education is funded equal to its mainstream equivalents through equity-based funding models
  2. Establish a $200m fund to drive whānau, hapū and iwi education and training initiatives including the establishment of new hapū-based wānanga
  3. Implement the Te Kōhanga Reo settlement claim (WAI 2336) including by significantly increase operational funding for kōhanga, recognising kaiako qualifications, and guaranteeing pay equity.
  4. Increase and promote scholarships available for young Māori to train as teachers of Te Aho Matua and for reo Māori speakers to train as teachers

Overhaul the mainstream education system

  1. Require a minimum of 25% of the education budget be directed to Māori models of delivery and pastoral care
  2. Ensure that te reo Māori and Māori history are core curriculum subjects in primary up to Year 10 at secondary schools
  3. Establish an independent Māori Standards Authority to oversee Māori language funding and audit providers to ensure they meet cultural and reo Māori competency standards
  4. Fund free digital devices and free internet for all children from Yr4 – Yr13
  5. Remove the power of schools to expel any student younger than the school leaving age of 16
  6. Require that all schools have Māori in their staff senior leadership teams
  7. Fund schools to hire additional Māori support staff who are well-paid and centrally funded
  8. Establish a Māori-led taskforce with the mandate to transform how Māori students with disabilities and learning differences are taught and supported
  9. Ensure that Māori staff are hired, and existing Māori staff paid extra, to lead cultural programmes such as kapa haka, taiaha, raranga and running school-based marae

Create pathways for school leavers

  1. Establish a $276m fund to ramp up the work of STEM and STEAM academies, such as the Pūhoro STEM Academy
  2. Double the existing Māori and Pacific trade training and cadetships placements per annum
  3. Permanently remove fees from apprenticeships

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