Action Plan for Pacific Education 2020-20302023 Refresh | Summary

The Action Plan for Pacific Education 2020-2030 maps the Government’s commitment to transforming outcomes for Pacific learners and families. It signals how early learning services, schools and tertiary providers can achieve change for Pacific learners and their families.

The Action Plan aligns with the strategic commitments for Pacific Aotearoa success and the vision for education for all Aotearoa ākonga.

The Vision for Pacific Education is that diverse Pacific learners and their families are safe, valued, and equipped to achieve their education aspirations.

The five key shifts are:

1.    Key Shift 1: Work reciprocally with diverse Pacific communities to respond to unmet needs, including growing and supporting Pacific bilingual and immersion education pathways.

2.    Key Shift 2: Confront systemic racism and discrimination in education.

3.    Key Shift 3: Enable every teacher, leader and educational professional to take coordinated action to become culturally competent with diverse Pacific learners.

4.    Key Shift 4: Partner with families to design education opportunities together with teachers, leaders and educational professionals so aspirations for learning and employment can be met.

5.    Key Shift 5: Grow, retain and value highly competent teachers, leaders and educational professionals of diverse Pacific heritages.

We also want to acknowledge the significant role that families and communities play in supporting their children and young people. We value and thank them for the contributions they make every day.

The guidance and resources provided in the full Action Plan for Pacific Education can also be used by families and communities to further support their children to achieve their aspirations.

You can find the full Action Plan for Pacific Education online, here Action Plan for Pacific Education 2020–2030 – Education in New Zealand or here https://tinyurl.com/yvfbrx2n

What is the Government doing?

We are continuing some actions from the 2020 Action Plan for Pacific Education. We are starting some new actions and have committed to some more new actions too.  We have also completed some of the actions in the 2020 Action Plan for Pacific Education.

Some of the key actions we are continuing are:

  • Delivering the Ka Ora Ka Ako | Food in Schools programme to provide free schools lunches for learners in areas with high levels of disadvantage.
  • Delivering the Unteach Racism programme.
  • Providing funding for innovative programmes through the Pacific Education Innovation Fund.
  • Supporting Pacific families through the Talanoa Ako programme.
  • Helping Pacific early learning services strengthen their governance and management skills.

Some of the key actions we have started are:

  • Setting up new NCEA Pacific subjects, including Gagana Tokelau and Vagahau Niue.
  • Implementing the Fakailoga Tino programme to support teachers to name, negotiate and navigate racism so they can better support Pacific learners, parents, families and communities.
  • Supporting teachers to teach Pacific learners through the Tapasā professional learning and development programme.
  • Delivering new resources to support Pacific learners to plan for study and training after high school.
  • Looking at what teachers need to teach in Pacific bilingual education.

Some of the key actions we will start are:

  • Supporting Pacific school leavers and their families to make informed study decisions through the Careers System Strategy and Tahatū.
  • Strengthening initiatives to make learning environments in schools safe and inclusive.
  • Supporting more teachers to teach Pacific learners through the Tapasā professional learning and development programme.
  • Delivering more supports to support Pacific learners to plan for study and training after high school.
  • Exploring opportunities to design initiatives to grow the number of Pacific language teachers with Pacific communities.

You can find more information on all of the actions in the full Action Plan for Pacific Education.

Growing Pacific Languages in Education

The 2023 Action Plan for Pacific Education also makes it clear that the Ministry of Education is committed to growing Pacific languages in education.

Pacific languages have a special place within Aotearoa and within our education system.We will support the growth of Pacific Languages in Education across early learning, schooling and tertiary education. This includes supporting the growth of bilingual and immersion education settings.

Our commitment is built off the place and benefit of Pacific languages and Pacific bilingualism in Aotearoa. There is lots of research that learners have better education and wellbeing outcomes when they learn in their language. There is also lots of research that this is good for our wider communities and the health of Pacific languages.

The New Zealand Government has some specific responsibilities and commitments to Pacific languages. The first Pacific Languages Strategy was published in September 2022. It identified nine target languages and described the status, current health and aspirations for these languages in Aotearoa. It also described a tailored approach to different languages to recognise these circumstances. You can find more information about the Strategy here – https://www.mpp.govt.nz/programmes/the-pacific-languages-strategy-2022-2032/ or here https://tinyurl.com/my757r7h

We will use the three categories set out in the Pacific Languages Strategy to guide us in education.

We will work with Pacific language communities to develop a pathway forward which best responds to their aspirations for Pacific Languages in Education, together with their community and sociolinguistic circumstances and relationships with the New Zealand Government.

In practical terms, we will have an initial focus on growing new and supporting current education pathways for gagana Sāmoa and lea faka-Tonga in secondary and tertiary, and for gagana Tokelau, vagahau Niue and te reo Māori Kuki ‘Āirani in early learning.

The Ministry of Education and partner agencies will use a range of levers across early learning, schooling and tertiary education to support the growth of Pacific Languages in Education. Some of these levers have already been established, while some are still under development. We will work with Pacific communities to support their leadership of Pacific Languages in Education. We will use the levers by progressing the key actions identified in this Action Plan.

The Ministry of Education will measure progress and reporting to Pacific communities on a two-yearly basis through the Action Plan Progress Reports and the reporting on the Pacific Languages Strategy. The Education Review Office is developing a Pacific Bilingual and Immersion Education Quality Framework to provide clear and consistent guidance on best practice pedagogy to early learning services and schools. This will become the basis for its review of relevant services and schools.

There is more work to do to support Pacific Languages in Education in Aotearoa. In this Action Plan, we have identified the first wave of actions to provide a platform for growth. It will be necessary to update these actions on an ongoing basis.

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