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How Youth Programme Teachers’ Learn to Implement Pasifika Values in Their Teaching
Tulisi, Iki Nehau
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This study focusses on six Youth Guarantee (YG) teachers and their understanding of Pasifika values in their teaching practices. Pasifika students’ achievement rates remain lower than New Zealand European and Asian students. The amount of Pasifika youth leaving school without the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) Level 2 is relatively low, with only Maori students rating lower. As a result, many of today’s youth are not equipped to move on to higher studies or employment. The need for YG courses to help youth deal with the transition between secondary school and tertiary studies or employment is increasing. This study utilised a qualitative, case study research approach with the use of six face-to-face semi-structured interviews underlined by the talanoa interview method. Through these interviews, the participants were able to share their understandings of Pasifika values. These six YG teachers were also able to outline their challenges as teachers of Pasifika students in a YG setting. The findings highlighted the teachers desire to improve their teaching practices of Pasifika students, despite not having the resources or training to implement Pasifika values in their teaching practices. The findings also indicated that many of the current generation of Pasifika youth raised in New Zealand, do not understand their own Pasifika cultures. In addition, participants needed more support to deal with the serious issues that YG students bring to the classroom. The study concluded that managers of organisations who provide YG courses, need to support their teachers to help implement Pasifika values in their teaching practices. To deal with student issues, other government agencies need to step in to support Providers and teachers of YG courses.