Tā te Pūnaha Mātauranga o Aotearoa he Kaikai Haere i te Oranga Tonutanga o te Reo: The Perpetuation of Māori Language Loss in the New Zealand Education System – A Pākehā Perspective
Naylor, Sarah (2006) Tā te Pūnaha Mātauranga o Aotearoa he Kaikai Haere i te Oranga Tonutanga o te Reo: The Perpetuation of Māori Language Loss in the New Zealand Education System – A Pākehā Perspective. Other thesis, University of Otago.
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This research report examines how the New Zealand education system has perpetuated language loss for Māori, both historically and contemporarily. Colonisation is not simply an historical concept but it remains embedded within society and its effects are felt throughout history and therefore it is important to look at the past in order to understand the present and to shape the future. Chapter One provides insight into the methodology employed to provide the foundation and theoretical framework from which the historical data and research can be best understood. Chapter two will take an historical look at education for Māori in New Zealand. The New Zealand education system holds its genesis in eurocentrism beginning with the first missionary school in 1814. Education for Māori began as a means of ‘civilising the natives’, to spread the Gospel and was used as a tool to assimilate Māori to the ways of the European, this was ensured through various acts and legislation. The Education Ordinance Act of 1847 introduced English as the language of instruction in all schools and in 1867 the Native Schools Act was introduced. This act established a number of secular village primary schools known as Native Schools. These schools were used for the education of Māori children. By the 1900s the Māori language was forbidden completely in schools and corporal punishment was administered to children who disobeyed. This had a devastating effect on the Māori language. Chapter three will look at the effects that early education had upon te reo Māori (the Māori language). Many of those children who were punished in school for speaking the Māori language stopped speaking te reo Māori completely for fear of further punishment; this led to generations of Māori who were raised as English speakers as their parents did not want them to be punished for speaking te reo Māori as they once were. Chapter four will examine a contemporary context. It will begin with a look at educational reforms such as Tomorrow’s Schools (1989) and the development of the current national curriculum and examine the effect these have had on te reo Māori in New Zealand schools today. This will include a critique of the New Zealand Curriculum Framework, its discrepancies and how this document affects the inclusion of te reo me ngā tikanga Māori (the Māori language and customary lore) in the New Zealand curriculum. It was Māori themselves who took a stand against language loss through the development of Te Kōhanga Reo and Te Kura Kaupapa Māori. Chapter five will take a look at the development of Kōhanga Reo and Kura Kaupapa Māori as well as the effect these Māori initiatives have had upon language revitalization in New Zealand. This chapter also examines the effect the transition from kaupapa Māori (Māori-based) education into mainstream has upon a student’s use of te reo Māori by showing the contrast between the two types of schooling and therefore highlighting how mainstream education perpetuates language loss. Chapter six looks at Ngā Haeata Mātauranga, the annual report on Māori education. This chapter will explore the various initiatives aimed at increasing Māori achievement while looking at how these initiatives relate to increasing the status of te reo Māori within education. Chapter seven is the final chapter and will sum up the whole report as well as propose recommendations for the future in terms of ensuring the survival of te reo Māori in New Zealand schools.
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