The Government has announced a new ‘Action Plan’ to better support Pacific learners in education.
It comes after 18 months of a series of fono with over 3000 people. Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa, who launched the initiative at Ōtāhuhu Primary School on Tuesday, says the 10-year plan was a “blueprint” for transforming outcomes for Pacific children.
“It will drive systemic change in and across the education system to support the education and wellbeing of our Pacific children and young people.”
The Action Plan recognises five ‘key shifts’ that the Pacific community identified as needed for change. That includes:
- Working reciprocally with diverse Pacific communities to respond to unmet needs, with an initial focus on needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic;
- Confronting systematic racism and discrimination in education;
- Enabling every teacher, leader, and education professional to take coordinated action to become culturally competent with diverse Pacific learners;
- Partnering with families to design education opportunities together with teachers, leaders and educational professionals so aspirations for learning and employment can be met; and
- Growing, retaining, and valuing highly competent teachers, leaders and educational professionals of diverse Pacific heritages.
Principal Jason Swann welcomed the new initiative, which includes the expansion of Tautai O Le Moana, an educational leadership programme co-designed by the NZ Pasifika Principals Association and the Ministry of Education.
“With our advisory group we’ve put together an initiative where we are advising school principals to understand a Pasifika worldview and be comfortable and confident in that space,” says Swann.
“With that initiative, we mentor school principals throughout their time as principals to be able to understand that and to be able to connect deeply with their families, students and for the students to be able to see themselves in their schools.”