The Māori Today - 3

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Tono kōrero mai

The third in a three-part series about the changes coming about as a result of Māori urbanisation. Produced by Robin King of the N.Z.B.C. in Wellington. (Many speakers are not identified.) This programme continues the examination of Māori children and the education system, begun in episode two.

Cultural differences mean Māori children may start school with little exposure to reading material. Several people comment on whether or not there were books in their homes growing up.

A woman talks about the distance rural Māori children have to travel to school and the problems wet weather can cause, due to a lack of adequate clothing.

Women comment on other cultural differences such as the need to attend tangi, homework and the expectation that Māori children have to carry out chores first.

Several unidentified Māori leaders comment on the role of Māori parents in ensuring their children get a good education. A man says pākēha find it hard to understand the problems rural Māori parents face when their children go to secondary school - many feel incompetent when their child's level of education passes their own.

The Māori playcentre movement is mentioned as evidence of a possible change in parental attitudes. Jock McEwen, Secretary of Māori Affairs and a fluent te reo speaker, comments on the lack of a good grounding in Māori language as a factor holding children back from succeeding in education, and gives examples of linguistic problems Māori children have with English. He notes that Cook Islands children are able to maintain their own language in primary school.
A woman and a man comment on the effect on their education, switching from Māori to English, before they were well-grounded in Māori - ending up speaking a type of 'pidgin Māori.' A man says the Māori language is fast being lost, and he fears the music and songs will be lost also.

A man and woman comment that a lot of young Māori feel guilty because they no longer speak Māori.

New developments to overcome some of these problems are noted: John Waititi's new books on teaching Māori and the Correspondence School lessons in te reo Māori are cited.

In 1958 the Education Department set up a Māori language advisory committee to look at ways of helping young Māori in education. A woman comments on the books this committee is producing, by Māori writers.
Miss Mary Kururangi, the Department's advisor on Māori arts, talks about her role, preparing a book for teachers on Māori arts and crafts and holding courses for teachers.

Barry Mitcalfe, formerly of Te Aute College, lectures in Polynesian Studies at Wellington Teachers' Training College. He talks about his course, which is optional, and notes that it is not enough to produce adequately-qualified teachers for Māori pupils.

The New Zealand Council for Educational Research is producing studies on Māori education. John Rangihau and John McCreary's report for Ruatahuna pupils was one.

Māori Womens' Welfare League President Mrs Mata Hirini speaks about the importance of education for her organisation. The League provides libraries and playcentres for Māori families and encourages mothers to have the confidence to be involved in their child's education. Over 30 Māori playcentres have been established recently.
Mrs Amiria Johnson, the only Māori Kindergarten Association supervisor comments briefly about working with Māori parents.

John Booth, secretary of the newly-formed New Zealand Māori Council speaks about making education a priority for the Council.
A man comments on scholarships for Māori pupils and notes that they can only be of limited assistance.

The Hunn Report of 1960 noted that education was the underlying solution to many Māori social problems. The Māori Education Foundation secretary John Joliffe comments on its work and that of earlier similar bodies, such as regional Māori Advancement Committees.

A school inspector, Mr Ball, talks about the influence of former Te Aute headmaster Mr Thornton and the first inspector of Māori Schools, Mr Pope.
Barry Mitcalfe comments on Mr Thornton and the leaders it produced, such as Peter Buck (Te Rangi Hīroa), Tūtere Wi Repa and Sir Apirana Ngata.

A woman notes some Māori families have a tradition of sending their children to boarding schools - mainly high-ranking chiefly families.

Jacqueline Baxter (Sturm), one of the first Māori women university graduates, speaks about the stress Māori students can feel as a result of the and high expectations of them.

Charles Bennett, assistant secretary of Māori Affairs summarises the state of Māori in education. He notes that if Māori are not succeeding, it is because the system is not meeting their needs, as they try to negotiate two paths. He says above all, something must be done about the language problem, and ends with Sir Apirana Ngata's whakatāuaki, 'E tipu e rea."

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Year 1964

Reference number 44238

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Credits RNZ Collection
KING, Robin, Producer
Sturm, J. C., Speaker/Kaikōrero
Ihaka, Kingi Matutaera, 1921-1993, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Hirini, Mata, Speaker/Kaikōrero
McEwen, Jock Malcolm, 1915-2010, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Kururangi, Maru, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Mitcalfe, Barry, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Johnson, Amiria, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Booth, John, Speaker/Kaikōrero

Duration 00:30:04

Date 1964

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