Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 24, Issue 10, pp 3038–3046 | Cite as

Enabling School Engagement for Māori Families in New Zealand

  • Neresa Hall
  • Garry Hornby
  • Sonja Macfarlane
Original Paper


The aim of this research was to explore the mechanisms involved for engaging Māori (the indigenous people of New Zealand) families in their child’s education. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with five Māori parents of year nine and ten students (aged between 12 and 14 years) from two suburban high schools in New Zealand. The research was framed within an indigenous qualitative methodology and employed interpretative phenomenological analysis from which four superordinate themes emerged. These themes closely align with concepts that underpin a Māori worldview (Ritchie in Becoming bicultural. Huia Publications, Wellington, NZ, 1992) and Macfarlane’s educultural wheel (Kia hiwa ra! Listen to culture—Māori students’ plea to educators. NZCER, Wellington, NZ, 2004). They have the potential to inform school policy, facilitate engagement with indigenous families, and foster Māori student achievement.


School Families Engagement Education New Zealand Māori 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of EducationUniversity of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand

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