Every young person in school and kura will soon start learning about how New Zealand’s histories have shaped our lives, says Education Minister Chris Hipkins.
The final curriculum content for New Zealand’s histories and Te Takanga o Te Wā has been released and is now available to all New Zealand schools and kura.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Ministers Kelvin Davis, Jan Tinetti, and Aupito William Sio are launching the Aotearoa New Zealand histories curriculum at Sylia Park School in Auckland. Tune into the livesteream above for more.
The new curriculum was officially announced last February, following up on a pledge in September 2019 that history would be compulsory in all New Zealand schools.
Hipkins says it means they can start planning now to teach it from the beginning of next year.
However, ACT believes the new curriculum "threatens to indoctrinate students in left-wing ideas and it requires an overhaul".
The Ministry of Education has been working with history and curriculum experts, iwi and mana whenua, Pacific communities, students and ākonga, parents and whānau, and other groups with a strong interest in shaping how New Zealand’s histories and Te Takanga o Te Wā could be taught.
The resulting draft curriculum content was tested in 2021 in schools and kura staffrooms, classrooms, and with the public through a survey and general submission process, says Hipkins.
Education Minister Chris Hipkins.
"The feedback the Ministry received was wide-ranging, clear, and at times confronting. New Zealanders have a lot to say about how our nation’s histories should be examined and discussed, and that is a good thing.
“Testing of the content with kura, schools, kaiako, and teachers has been very positive. We are confident the final curriculum incorporates the feedback and ideas that were provided."
While some parts of it the curriculum will be taught right throughout the country, schools and kura can decide on what histories to include from their local area, in partnership with whānau, iwi, mana whenua and local communities.
Hipkins says this will ensure their local curriculum or marau ā-kura is reflective of the people, places and events that are important within their communities.”
The Ministry of Education will provide support and resources for schools and kura to ensure they can keep parents, whānau and the wider community, including iwi and hapū, informed and involved.
"This is the first step in a five-year refresh that will make the whole national curriculum clearer and easier to use, and better able to deliver more inclusive and equitable learning experiences for all young New Zealanders," says Hipkins.
"This exciting development in our education system means generations to come will better understand our place in the world and what has made us the nation we are."
Despite Hipkins' positivity, ACT feels the "new history curriculum is taking us backwards".
"The new history curriculum leaves huge gaps in our true history, excluding science, technology and the women’s movement," says ACT’s Education spokesperson Chris Baillie.
“The curriculum divides history into villains and victims, contains significant gaps, and pushes a narrow set of highly political stories from our past.
“We want children to be empowered and equipped with knowledge of the world they live in, not a narrow fragment of it promoted by the Ministry of Education.
“It leaves out or brushes over growing civil rights and liberties, technological and scientific innovation, and our citizens’ participation in two World Wars.
ACT says the New Zealand history curriculum should be radically redrafted to give an honest and inclusive account of who the New Zealand people are. Read more here.
More information including the final content is available at:
Te Takanga o Te Wā – https://kauwhatareo.govt.nz/mi/kaupapa/te-takanga-o-te-wa
Aotearoa New Zealand’s histories – https://aotearoahistories.education.govt.nz