Engaging Pasifika in learning

Riha Taonui

New Zealand born Samoan Rhia Taonui spent her early years being raised by her grandparents in a village in Samoa. Today, as the Pasifika Community Liaison person at the Palmerston North City Council, Rhia draws on her early experience to carry out her role which is ‘to support evidence-based best practice approach to enable communities to lead and take action.’

It’s not just education for adults that she focuses on – it is education to meet the Pasifika community’s learning needs. This way she engages whole families and whole communities.

Pacific student NCEA success

Pasifika Education

Pacific students have almost caught up with Europeans in the top two levels of the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) for the first time since the qualification was introduced 15 years ago.

National results for 2017, released today, show that the proportion of Year 12 Pacific students achieving NCEA Level 2 has climbed from just 50.5 per cent in 2008 to 80.7 per cent – now just a fraction behind European students’ 84.5 per cent.

In the same period the pass rate for European students crept up only slowly from 73.9 per cent to 84.5 per cent.