Letters/ Nga¯ reta ki te kaita¯tari
The only culture
Clark’s Labour Government embedded policies such as sustainability and social justice into our school curricula. But it was over the Treaty of Waitangi the most blatant political manipulation is seen. The treaty is now interwoven in all subject areas at all curriculum levels. But as if that is not enough, the Maori Party announced last year that as part of their coalition deal with National a stronger Maori focus would be brought into the curriculum through the spending of $1.6 million over three years to strengthen the teaching of Maori ‘‘history’’ in primary and secondary schools. The official promotion of what amounts to Maori supremacy in schools, sends a signal to students and families that the only culture that matters in New Zealand is Maori. This rejects the curriculum’s cultural diversity principle stating: ‘‘The curriculum reflects New Zealand’s cultural diversity and values the histories and traditions of all its people.’’ The symptoms of a failing education system are starting to show – lower than expected international test scores, school leavers without basic literacy and numeracy skills, increasing numbers of tertiary dropouts, excessive political indoctrination.
If this concerns you raise your voice. Denis Shuker