May 10, 2021
Law schools told to teach tikanga
A leading Māori legal scholar says the profession now seems ready to embrace the challenge of bringing tikanga Māori into the law.
The Council for Legal Education has decided all law schools must teach and assess tikanga Māori across all compulsory subjects in law degrees.
Auckland University of Technology law school acting dean Khylee Quince says that’s a real step, change, and reflects the work done not just by Māori academics and lawyers but the rest of the profession.
Lawyers now have Māori clients who need help dealing with land, fisheries or treaty settlement assets.
"They need to know how it is they should be engaging with Māori as clients, not just criminal clients but in terms of contracts, the way we make decisions, the tikanga aspects of dispute resolution, and even basic things like communication and manaakitanga, how do you look after Māori clients properly," Associate Professor Quince says.
Law schools will need to consider who they should teach tikanga, how it should be taught, where it should be taught – in the classroom, on the marae or elsewhere.
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