Wharekura principal critical of education review

By Mānia Clarke-Mamanu

The principal of a South Auckland wharekura says the education overhaul suggested in the report into Tomorrow's Schools will not benefit Māori students in mainstream schools.

The head of Te Wharekura o Manurewa, Maahia Nathan is not impressed with the latest review.

“The core of the mainstream education system is still there. Nothing has really changed,” says Nathan, "the pieces on the board game have been moved around, but it's still the same.”

Reducing school board powers and introducing crown entity education hubs to manage school governance over 125 schools each are some of the recommendations.

“Our children are not succeeding as they should under the current education system.”

“We have established our Māori medium early childhood centres, primary schools, secondary school and universities, that's most important.  They show that our children are achieving in this system of teaching.”

For eight months an independent task force has led an inquiry into the self-governing model of the last 30 years, which highlighted flaws, especially for the most disadvantaged students.

Nathan says more monies must be poured into Māori medium schools.

“This is an obligation under the treaty to have equal partnership with Māori, therefore the funding that is given to mainstream schools must be the same given to Māori schools.”

Nathan also encourages caregivers to place their children in Māori medium schools for best educational success.