7 Oct 2010

Poverty seen as key to learning problems

10:06 am on 7 October 2010

A Northland school principal says poverty and deprivation are major factors in the learning failure of many Maori students and it is not a problem that schools can fix on their own.

An Education Review Office report says schools will no longer be considered to be high-performing, unless Maori students are achieving.

Pat Newman of Hora Hora primary school in Whangarei says many Maori pupils come from impoverished families and enter school well behind in learning skills.

Mr Newman told Morning Report that the students can catch up if given intensive help, good teaching, and help for their parents where it is needed.