Education Response to Te Puni Kokori Report

  • Brian Donnelly
Associate Minister of Education

A Te Puni Kokori report on the Ministry of Education reinforced the direction the Ministry is now taking to improve educational outcomes for Maori, Education Minister Wyatt Creech and Associate Education Minister Brian Donnelly said today.

The Ministry of Education is the first of the Government's mainstream policy ministries to be
reviewed by Te Puni Kokiri.

"The review of the Education Ministry's internal workings was carried out ten months ago, before the new Secretary for Education took over the job.

"Many of the problems identified in the report have been acknowledged by the Ministry and action is already being taken to improve the situation.

"Since the review the Education Ministry has reorganised its policy and implementation functions bringing them closer together. There is better co-ordination and integration in the way the Ministry develops and implements policy," the Ministers said.

"Shortly after assuming the position of Secretary for Education, Howard Fancy commenced leading it through a reform process with the aim of making it more responsive to the needs and aspirations of Maori. This included substantial structural change."

Both Ministers have taken a special interest in Maori education and believe the future is bright.

"We are confident that if Te Puni Kokiri did an update now on the direction the Education Ministry is heading it would come up with a completely different picture."

The Ministers said as well as the organisational change within the Ministry the Budget delivered substantially for Maori students.

"The Government and its agencies are working hard to turn around the statistics that show many Maori do less well than non-Maori at school. "

The Ministry of Education is working closely with Te Puni Kokiri to develop an Education Strategy for Maori.

In the new financial year the Ministry will be concentrating on issues affecting Maori across a range
of areas including the Maori Language Strategy, research, teacher supply, teacher workload, curriculum development, the provision of Maori medium education and policies affecting Maori in mainstream education.

"The Te Puni Kokiri report will provide a constructive check on what the Education Ministry has done and is doing to get better education outcomes for Maori."

The Ministers said the review would be fed into the changes in direction being made at the Ministry of Education to ensure the best possible results for Maori are achieved.