The Government’s Māori MPs have been explaining what the Budget has delivered to Māori in a series of breakfast meetings around the country.
On Tuesday they were at Hihiaua Culture Centre, Whangārei, to discuss what Budget 2023 delivered for Māori at a breakfast with stake holders and community members.
Minister for Māori Crown Relations, Associate Minister of Education, Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis outlined the gains he said had been made for Māori in the Budget last Thursday.
He said the Budget had seen the biggest-ever investment in school property with more money for new sites and modernisation; the roll-out of learning support coordination in kaupapa Māori and Māori Medium Schooling and a boost in funding for iwi and schools to work together on Local Histories content.
There had also been substantial support for Māori Education, including a big boost to learning support.
“Since we became Government we have walked the talk when funding Māori Education, an area that has long been neglected,” Davis said.
“That has seen money for new teachers and learning resources, huge investment in property, improved classrooms, new land for kura and much more. I’m pleased to be able to continue that direction in Budget 2023.”
He said the focus this year continues to be on infrastructure, which the Government has increased funding for in the past three budgets, alongside learning support coordination for schools and kura providing kaupapa Māori/Māori Medium education.
This is expected to benefit around 25,000 ākonga Māori who are learning in 325 schools and kura who will be better connected with supports that align to Kaupapa Māori and Māori medium education settings.
In total, $225 million will go directly into Māori Education, seeing even more kura built and modernised and teacher scholarships extended, Davis said.
On top of the core package, Budget 2023 will also boost outcomes for Māori ākonga through broader initiatives such as extending funding for important teacher supply initiatives to boost enrolments for Māori teachers and the delivery of Mātauranga Māori provision, including te reo Māori.
Partnerships with Māori and iwi-led organisations will also be strengthened, including a boost for the Pūhoro STEM Academy to take an extra 6,500 ākonga Māori into their programme that will lead to more Māori with the qualifications to enter into these key industries.
“I know in particular the learning support funding will be well received, it is something that has been high on the agenda,” Davis said.
“We have been committed to addressing inequities that have been allowed to develop in Māori education for too long. Over the years we have invested more than $1 billion to properly fund this space.’’
Full Budget 2023 Māori Education elements:
$112.5m to build more classrooms and modernise existing ones
$21.88m for the expansion, maintenance, and remediation of existing kura, kōhanga reo, and puna reo sites alongside capital investment costs
$39.89m to support and strengthen partnerships with Māori and iwi-led organisations in Māori education
$40.42m for learning support coordination in kaupapa Māori and Māori medium schooling
$9.92m for work with up to 57 iwi in supporting the rollout of the local histories curriculum
$1.35m to extend funding for several critical teaching supply initiatives, including the TeachNZ scholarships