Four Pāpāmoa schools started the 2020 school year with a pōhiri and Ngā Pōtiki was there to help welcome the new students and staff.
Chair of Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore Trust, Colin Reeder, said it was “a real privilege” for Ngā Pōtiki to take part in pōhiri with Pāpāmoa College, Te Akau ki Pāpāmoa School, Tahatai Coast School and Pāpāmoa Primary School.
“In doing so, we fulfill our commitment to the schools and it’s in line with the Ngā Pōtiki education strategy as well – that we collaborate with our schools to provide the best educational experience for kids as possible.”
Ngā Pōtiki is deeply embedded in all four schools and is committed to supporting quality education.
“Not just for Māori kids but for all kids because, at the end of the day, they are part of our community and we’re part of their community,” Reeder said.
The first pōhiri of the year was at Pāpāmoa College, which is celebrating its 10th birthday this year.
Ngā Pōtiki has been involved in the school since its inception, even before the school buildings were built.
Principal of Pāpāmoa College, Steve Lindsey, said starting the new school year with a pōhiri was “really, really important”.
“You’ve got to focus on the important things, and you start with the important things. I reckon this is really, really important – connecting with people of the land, tangata whenua, and our relationship.”
He said he had received great feedback in the past about the pōhiri from parents and whānau involved.
Ngā Pōtiki kuia Rangi Oliver performed the karanga at Pāpāmoa College and said it was “a beautiful experience”.
“Lovely. I had that lovely wairua going through me, you know, I wanted to cry.”
We helped welcome new Year 7 tauira, their whānau and new staff to Papamoa College this week with a pōhiri, marking the start of the new school year.The Year 8 tauira performed a haka pōhiri, with the support of Ngā Pōtiki kaikaranga Rangi Oliver, and kaikōrero John Ohia and Colin Reeder.E hika tū ake
Posted by Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore Trust on Thursday, 30 January 2020
Ngā Pōtiki kaumātua John Ohia was at all four school pōhiri and provided the mihi each time.
He said each pōhiri was different, but they were all “really rewarding and helpful”.
“I think one of the main things was actually seeing the children and their singing.”
Ohia was impressed with the level of te reo Māori being spoken and sung by the students.
“We’re starting with the little kids – these 5-year-olds down here, and of course when they did their waiata, they did it totally in teo reo Māori, purotu. And it’s fantastic listening to them,” he said.
“The kids are speaking it; the parents are becoming more aware of just how important the two languages are, and we may be looking at a generation that is going to be bilingual.”
Ohia said a big part of Ngā Pōtiki’s kaupapa was its education programme and that had always been the case, “mai rānō”.
Principal of Te Akau ki Pāpāmoa School, Bruce Jepsen, said culture, identity, and te reo Māori were integral to every school day.
He said opening the school year with a pōhiri was expected and normalised and was the right way to start a school year.
Jepsen said Te Akau ki Pāpāmoa School holds a pōhiri for all special and formal occasions that involve welcoming manuhiri.
“We teach te reo Māori every day to all students – it is a norm for our kaiako and tamariki. I love the culture of our kura and the richness this provides to our teaching and learning context,” he said.
“It is always a highlight to have our kaumātua and kuia leading these occasions.”
Ka rawe Tahatai Coast School! We loved being part of your pōhiri.Tahatai Coast School Authorised
Posted by Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore Trust on Tuesday, 18 February 2020
Kirsten Bell, an acting principal at Tahatai Coast School, said it was “really fantastic” that Ngā Pōtiki kaumātua John Ohia was able to support the school and speak on its behalf at the pōhiri, “so that we could continue with the kaupapa that we want to be a part of our place each term”.
“We think it’s really important to value the people of the area and welcome our new community – our new staff to our kura, our international families, our new children and all of their whānau,” she said.
Pāpāmoa Primary School bussed its students to Te Whetū o Te Rangi Marae over two days so they could experience the pōhiri in a marae setting.
The children also took part in other activities at the marae such as poi, tī rākau, and lessons inside the wharenui.
Kahurangi Poa, Māori coordinator at Pāpāmoa Primary, said she had been teaching for quite a while and was really pleased to see that there had been a change in the way Māori is taught in schools.
“And it’s been a positive change,” she said.
“It’s not so much based on exercises in a book, it’s more about creating a holistic view of how you learn Māori.”
Poa said it was also very important for the school to be able to make connections with its local iwi, Ngā Pōtiki.
Ngā Pōtiki also hosted an educational teacher only day for Golden Sands School staff in March, which included a pōhiri and visit to Tahuwhakatiki Marae (Rōmai), and a coach tour around places of cultural significance to Ngā Pōtiki, from Maketū to Pāpāmoa.
Papamoa Primary School spent some time at Te Whetū o Te Rangi Marae recently, supported by hau kāinga and Ngā Pōtiki kaumātua.We value the close connection we have with our local Pāpāmoa schools and the opportunity to be involved in educational activities like this.
Posted by Ngā Pōtiki ā Tamapahore Trust on Sunday, 1 March 2020