Iti noa ana, he pito mata: A Critical Analysis of Educational Success Through a Māori Lens and Two Case Studies of Whānau Within Ngāti Awa and Ngāti Tūwharetoa
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Throughout New Zealand history, successive governments’ legislation, and policies such as the Education Ordinance Act 1847, followed by the Native Ordinance Act 1880; Native School Act 1858 - 1867 and revisions of the Education Act 1877, etc., have had a crucial impact on Māori educational achievement. In fact, the continual perpetuation of inequities in Māori communities has been exacerbated by the intergenerational transmission of Māori language loss within and across whānau (family), alienating many Māori from their culture and contributing to the changing and reshaping of mainstream schooling. This qualitative research captures Māori whānau lived experiences and realities of education and provides deeper insight of the current truths for Māori whānau living within Ngāti Awa and/or Ngāti Tūwharetoa ki Kawerau. This thesis shines a spotlight on Māori whānau perspectives of the challenges and barriers to academic success they encountered on their educational journey in mainstream schooling. Insights yielded from Māori whānau offer an opportunity to rethink the overall role and purpose of educational success for future generations of Māori whānau. Two case-studies of these iwi (tribe) examine the critical issues for whānau that are seen as roadblocks to educational success including the effects of the transmission of intergenerational historical and cultural trauma has had on successive generations of Māori whānau, hapū (sub-tribe) and iwi from both Ngāti Awa and Ngāti Tūwharetoa ki Kawerau. Specifically, this research aims to discern why the effects and processes of colonisation within mainstream structures of schooling, and teaching and learning continue to have a compounding effect on educational success for tamariki Māori (children of Māori descent) over successive generations. There are three research questions: How do whānau conceptualise educational success for their children? What Māori values inform whānau views of educational success for their children? What other factors do whānau consider as imperative for the educational success of their children? This research employs a Kaupapa Māori framework and sets up all material to be presented through an Indigenous Māori lens. It also facilitates the use of a pūrākau (myths, legend, stories) style of narrative.