Author(s): Jessica Hutchings, Alex Barnes et al.
This report presents the findings of a kaupapa Maori research project called Critical Issues for Whanau in Maori Education. We asked a variety of whanau the question: What sorts of educational research would be of benefit to your children and whanau in education? The aim was to use the whanau responses to refine a Maori-led and whanau-informed research agenda for Te Wahanga. Whanau are integral to the educational wellbeing of Maori students. Yet little educational research has been done with an explicit whanau focus. This research aimed to help fill the gap. We used the kaupapa Maori approach of whanaungatanga and the method of korero a-whanau to work directly with whanau in ways that upheld their integrity and authority. Korero a-whanau ensures the voices and day to day experiences of whanau in education are heard. It acknowledges their diverse priorities and aspirations. Three overarching themes connected the many issues raised by whanau. These are Nga Moemoea (whanau aspirations), Rangatiratanga (whanau autonomy and authority) and Te Reo Rangatira (learning and maintenance of reo Maori).