Graduates embrace Pasifika languages and cultures
Dressed in a colourful array that blended traditional Pacific Island finery and traditional formal attire, 57 graduands from Auckland University’s Faculty of Education crossed the stage recently to receive their Diploma of Teaching (Early Childhood Education) Pacific Islands.
As of 2012, the Ministry of Education will require all ECE teachers to have a Diploma in Teaching (ECE).
The Faculty of Education cohort comprised women from Samoa, Tonga, Niue and the Cook Islands. There was also one man from the Cook Islands.
The majority of the group earned their qualification at the University’s Epsom campus; however, 12 of the graduates studied in Tokoroa, where they enrolled in a pilot programme aimed at raising the number of qualified ECE teachers in the area.
Established in 2000, the DipTchg (ECE) PI gives graduates the knowledge, skills and professional base for working in centres with a large number of Pasifi children.
Learning tools for teaching across the areas of literacy, numeracy, Pasifika languages and culture, many of the courses embrace the different cultures, values and heritage of Pasifika people.
“Our programme celebrates the diversity of Pasifika languages, cultures and Traditions - and we want our students to celebrate these traditions with their young students,” says programme coordinator Patisepa Tuafuti.
Students are encouraged to speak in their native tongues, and some courses use both English and Pasifika languages in their instruction.
“The Faculty of Education has a long and valued relationship with our Pasifika communities,” says Dr John Langley, Dean of Education.
“This year’s graduates will no doubt go on to share their skills and knowledge with these communities and continue this tradition of education and respect.”
The University now provides the Bachelor of Teaching Early ChildhoodPasifika Specialisation to continue in this tradition.