Supporting Wāhine Māori Leaders in Secondary Schools
A recent report, “Me aro ki te hā o Hine-ahu-one | Wāhine Māori in Leadership,” conducted by Te Wāhanga – the NZ Council for Educational Research, has shed light on the challenges faced by wāhine Māori (Māori women) leaders and aspiring leaders in secondary schools. The report emphasises the urgent need for tailored support to empower these leaders.
The report highlights several key barriers faced by wāhine Māori leaders:
● Work-Life Balance – Juggling leadership roles with personal life can be overwhelming
● Feeling Overworked – Many wāhine Māori leaders experience high levels of stress and overwork
● Lack of Confidence – Cultural and systemic biases erode the confidence of wāhine Māori leaders
● Representation – The absence of Māori role models in leadership positions hinders aspirations
● Educational System – The system often neglects Māori culture and perspectives, creating additional challenges.
PPTA Te Wehengarua Māori vice president Te Aomihia Taua-Glassie, urges immediate action to address these issues. To empower wāhine Māori leaders, the report recommends:
● Create mentoring programs designed to address the unique challenges faced by wāhine Māori leaders
● Develop ‘apprenticeship’ models to provide hands-on experience and build confidence
● Offer wānanga, courses, and hui for skill and knowledge enhancement.
The report emphasises the importance of supporting wāhine Māori leaders and aspiring leaders in our secondary schools. By implementing tailored support systems, innovative models, and enhancing professional development opportunities, we can pave the way for more wāhine Māori leaders to serve as role models and champions for our rangatahi. It’s time to take action and empower these leaders for a brighter future in education.