A life-history analysis of achievement of Māori and Pacific Island students at the Church College of New Zealand
Solomon, T. E. (2008). A life-history analysis of achievement of Māori and Pacific Island students at the Church College of New Zealand (Thesis, Master of Education (MEd)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10289/2272
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/2272
The Church College of New Zealand is a private co-educational secondary school located near Hamilton, New Zealand and is sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Since its opening in 1958, it has hosted a large population of Polynesian students, in particular Māori. The questions that this thesis addresses centre on the nature, history and reasons for what seems to be a disproportionately higher level of achievement amongst Māori and Pacific Island students at Church College than in New Zealand more broadly. Through a life-history approach to research, this thesis provides an overview of the rich history behind the building of the Church College, and highlights the experiences of successful graduates over three particular timeframes - 1951-1969, 1970-1989 and the 1990s. A major contributing factor to the success of the students at Church College is an environment where both religious and cultural values of students are reaffirmed and considered normal. For some students, Church College provided an environment that validated what students were being taught in their own homes. For others, it provided a refuge from a conflicted home. With the growing pressures of social problems within the wider community for many Māori and Pacific Island families, the school environment of the Church College was a key factor in providing stability and security for some students at the College. On June 29 2006, an announcement was made by leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of the phased out closure of Church College beginning in the year 2007 and eventually closing at the end of the year 2009. With Māori and Pacific Island students so under-represented in achievement and participation in education settings in New Zealand, the announcement of the closure provided an opportunity to highlight some of the successes experienced at the Church College of New Zealand.
The University of Waikato
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