Tauhivā ako: Engaging Indigenous relationality in school leadership
My article privilege Indigenous relationality within the context of school leadership in Aotearoa. The Pacific concepts of vā, tauhivā and vātamaki are engaged as cultural alternatives to shifting the school system in Aotearoa. School leaders who engage cultural relational approaches in their practice are responsive to raising student outcomes for all students. In order to shift systems of domination and oppression, we must look within the source of Indigenous knowledge systems for solutions and strength to advance Indigenous concerns. My article is a personal and tauhivā reflection of a Tongan school leader who constantly navigates harmonious and disharmonious relations in their practice. It may be useful in thinking about how a cultural approach to leadership through relationality can enhance the theoretical and practical application of leadership practice in schools.
Alfred, T., & Corntassel, J. (2005). Being indigenous: Resurgences against contemporary colonialism. Government and Opposition, 40(4), 597–614. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1477-7053.2005.00166.x
Bishop, R. (2019). Teaching to the North-East: Relationship-based learning in practice. New Zealand Council for Educational Research.
Chilisa, B. (2019). Indigenous research methodologies. Sage Publications.
Churchward, C. M. (1959). Tongan dictionary. Government Printing Press.
Efi, T. A. T. T. T. (2003). In search of meaning, nuance and metaphor in social policy. Social Policy Journal of New Zealand, 49–63. https://www.msd.govt.nz/documents/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/journals-and-magazines/social-policy-journal/spj20/20-pages49-63.pdf
Fa’aea, A. M., & Enari, D. (2021). The pathway to leadership is through service: Exploring the Samoan tautua lifecycle. Pacific Dynamics: Journal of Interdisciplinary Research, 5(1),93-100. https://doi.org/10.26021/10643
Fa’avae, D. (2018). Negotiating the Vā: The “self” in relation to others and navigating the multiple spaces as a New Zealand-raised Tongan male. In Questions of culture in autoethnography (pp. 57–68). Routledge. https://researchcommons.waikato.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/10289/14188/Talanoa%20v%C4%81%2C%20indigenous%20masculinities_AUTHORS%20ACCEPTED%20VERSION.pdf?sequence=8&isAllowed=y
Faʻavae, D. T. M. (2021). Vā and veitapui as decolonial potential: Ongoing talatalanoa and re-imagining doctoral being and becoming. In C. Badenhorst, B. Amell & J. Burford (Eds.), Re-imagining doctoral writing (pp. 167-184). The WAC Clearinghouse. https://wac.colostate.edu/docs/books/doctoral/chapter8.pdf
Hau’ofa, E. (1995). Our sea of islands. In R. Wilson & A. Dirlik (Eds.), Asia/Pacific as space of cultural production (pp. 86–98). Duke University Press.
Hohepa, M. K., & Robson, V. (2008). Māori and educational leadership: Tū Rangatira. AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples, 4(2), 20–38. https://doi.org/10.1177/117718010800400
Johansson-Fua, S. (2003). Pule ako: Educational leadership in Tonga [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. University of Toronto.
Johansson-Fua, S. (2007). Looking towards the source: Social justice and leadership conceptualisations from Tonga. Journal of Educational Administration, 45(6), 672-683. https://doi.org/10.1108/09578230710829865
Jones, A. (1991). At School I’ve Got a Chance: Culture/privilege : Pacific Islands and Pakeha Girls at School. Palmerston North, New Zealand: Dunmore Press.
Kalavite, T. (2010). Fononga'a fakahalafononga: Tongan students' journey to academic achievement in New Zealand tertiary education [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. University of Waikato.
Ka’ili, T. O. (2005). Tauhi va: Nurturing Tongan sociospatial ties in Maui and beyond. The Contemporary Pacific, 17(1), 83–114. https://www.jstor.org/stable/23721933
Ka’ili, T. O. (2008). Tauhi vā: Creating beauty through the art of sociospatial relations. University of Washington.
Ka’ili, T. O. (2017). Marking indigeneity: The Tongan art of sociospatial relations. University of Arizona Press.
Khalifa, M. A., Khalil, D., Marsh, T. E., & Halloran, C. (2019). Toward an indigenous, decolonizing school leadership: A literature review. Educational Administration Quarterly, 55(4), 571–614. https://doi.org/10.1177/0013161X188093
Māhina, H. O. (2008). From vale (ignorance) to ‘ilo (knowledge) to poto (skill) the Tongan theory of ako (education): Theorising old problems anew. AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples, 4(1), 67–96.
Māhina, O. (2004). Issues and challenges in Pacific research: Some critical comments. In T. L. Baba, O. Māhina, N. Williams, & U. Nabobo-Baba (Eds.), Researching Pacific and indigenous peoples: Issues and perspectives (pp. 186–200). University of Auckland.
Matapo, J., & Allen, J. M. (2020). Traversing Pacific identities in Aotearoa/New Zealand: Blood, ink, lives. In E. Fitzpatrick & K. Fitzpatrick (Eds.), Poetry, method and education research: Doing critical, decolonisng and political inquiry (pp. 207–220). Routledge.
Ministry of Education. (2019). Best practice for teaching Pacific learners. Pacific evidence brief 2019.https://www.educationcounts.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/199685/Best-practice-for-teaching-Pacific-learners-Pacific-Evidence-Brief-2019.pdf
Reigeluth, C. M. (1992). The imperative for systemic change. Educational Technology, 32(11), 9–13. https://www.jstor.org/stable/44425484#metadata_info_tab_contents
Robinson, V. (2011). Student-centered leadership. John Wiley & Sons.
Samu, T. W. (2006). The “Pasifika umbrella” and quality teaching: Understanding and responding to the diverse realities within. Waikato Journal of Education, 12. https://doi.org/10.15663/wje.v20i3.229
Sanga, K., Johansson-Fua, S. U., Reynolds, M., Fa’avae, D., Robyns, R., & Jim, D. (2021). “Getting beneath the skin”: A tok stori approach to reviewing the literature of leadership in Solomon Islands, Tonga and Marshall Islands. International Education Journal: Comparative Perspectives, 20(2), 52–75. https://openjournals.library.sydney.edu.au/IEJ/article/view/15326
Smith, L. T. (2012). Decolonizing methodologies: Research and indigenous peoples (2nd ed.). Zed Books.
Torrance, D., & Humes, W. (2015). The shifting discourses of educational leadership: International trends and Scotland’s response. Educational Management Administration & Leadership, 43(5), 792–810. https://doi.org/10.1177/1741143214535
Thaman, K. H. (1999). The forgotten context: Culture and teacher education in Oceania. Directions: Journal of Educational Studies, 21(1), 13–30.
Thaman, K. H. (2003). Decolonizing Pacific studies: Indigenous perspectives, knowledge, and wisdom in higher education. The Contemporary Pacific, 15(1), 1–17. https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1276829.pdf
Thaman, K. H. (2004). Tauhi Vaha’a: A possible foundation for peace and intercultural understanding. Intercultural Education, 32–36.
Thaman, K. H. (2008). Looking towards the source: A consideration of (cultural) context in teacher education. In U. Nabobo-Baba, S. Houma, & J. Veramu (Eds.), Pacific educational journeys (pp. 41–45). University of the South Pacific/Max Marketing.
Vaai, U. L. (2017). Relational hermeneutics: A return to the relationality of the Pacific itulagi as a lens for understanding and interpreting life. In U. L. Vaai & A. Casimira (Eds.), Relational hermeneutics: Decolonising the mindset and the Pacific itulagi (pp. 17-41). University of the South Pacific Press & the Pacific Theological College.
Wilson, S. (2008). Research is ceremony: Indigenous research methods. Fernwood.
Copyright (c) 2022 ‘Emeline Tu’imana
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.