August 28, 2023
Ferris touts tiriti response to ECE change
Early childhood education workers have delivered a 6000-signature petition to parliament calling for a 1:4 teacher-child ratio for under three year olds, pay parity and increased funding for the sector.
Māori Party education spokesperson and Te Tai Tonga candidate Tākuta Ferris, who was at the event at parliament on Friday, says early childhood education also needs to be seen through the lens of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
“Te reo Māori, tīkanga Māori, the Māori worldview, having your kuia and kaumātua around, that’s not a reality in an ECE. Our position of power to champion a solution is in Te Tiriti o Waitangi, it’s in the crown-Maori relationship and the benefits that come out of there – we make sure they spread right across through ECE through education to all our tamariki Māori, mokopuna Māori, who are in those auraki streams, they get looked after as well,” he says.
The percentage of mokopuna Maori in ECE went from 51 percent to 54 percent between 2014 and 2021, with about half in centres where te reo Māori is spoken for more than 11 percent of the teaching time.