9 Oct 2012

Culture can bolster child progress - authority

6:56 am on 9 October 2012

Iwi Education Authority (Te Maru o Nga Kura o Aotearoa) executives say a greater emphasis on cultural learning as part of the national curriculum would lead to many children doing better at school.

Authority chair Toby Curtis says pupils at many kura do well because the recognition of their backgrounds is as integral to their daily learning as numeracy and literacy.

He says kura working with the authority will look more closely at how that has evolved and develop it further.

Mr Curtis says the authority will also help any mainstream schools seeking to achieve the same thing.

He says schools where there are children from many cultures, such as Indian or Chinese, would benefit from adopting the same approach.

Mr Curtis says Maori students in low-decile schools, where their culture is used and accepted, often do better than Maori students in well-resourced mainstream schools, that don't have the same emphasis.