Biculturalism in education: Haere whakamua, hoki whakamuri/Going forward, thinking back
While references to the Treaty of Waitangi and/or biculturalism are an accepted part of the New Zealand education policy landscape, there is often a lack of consensus around the meaning, and therefore the practice implications, of the term ‘biculturalism’. This difficulty can be explained by viewing biculturalism as an ideology that has continued to evolve since its emergence in the 1980s. In policy texts older understandings of the term are overlaid with more recent understandings and can contribute to uncertainty about what the term means to teachers in 2015. This is particularly challenging for teachers and school leaders as they attempt to negotiate the requirements of the Practising Teacher Criteria. This suggests that there is a need to continue engaging in discussion about the meaning of biculturalism in education in the present, looking forward, but informed by the past.
Copyright (c) 2016 Megan Lourie
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