He mata ngaro : Maori leadership in educational administration : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Educational Administration at Massey University
This thesis is about Maori Leadership in Educational Administration. It focuses on the complexities of the Maori Educational Administrator's world, in particular, the reconciling of local and national demands. The study provides an example of how they find themselves confined to a governance agenda while working with Maori Communities seeking to advance their respective self-determination positions. It attempts to reveal the size and shape of Maori leadership ideas within a diversity of Maori realities and the implications for Maori Educational Administrators. Its relevance is displayed by the variance between Maori community expectations and Maori Educational Administrators' perceptions about what they do or should do. The dilemma raises questions about the knowledge, skill and qualities required by Maori who pursue an education profession. More importantly, it challenges the frame of reference used to develop training and personal development programmes for this purpose. For similar reasons, the study has application for Maori working in other government agencies because these concerns, expectations and perceptions are likely to affect them also. The research methodology used for this study is a multi-disciplined approach which recognises Maori cultural indexes for knowledge and research definitions. Within this framework, the significance of tribal reconstruction and redevelopment, and the pursuit of self-determination by Maori social groups are accounted for. Questionnaire surveys and focus group interviews were the main techniques used for gathering quantitative and qualitative data. The most significant leadership variable identified was a commitment to improve the Maori position followed by Maori knowledge and skills, and Maori cultural integrity. Maori ethical/moral discipline is considered to be in major crisis, ahead of achieved leadership, Maori knowledge and skills, and Maori cultural integrity. In comparison, it is considered that too much time is wasted on international knowledge and skills, results orientation, inherited leadership, group acceptance and loyalty to the group. The poor rating of international knowledge and skills is an unusual feature. Further to this, it is argued that education administration theory development has significantly influenced the direction of Maori Education in New Zealand spanned by a historical tension between Tino Rangatiratanga and Kawanatanga. It is also argued that the assimilative practices will not improve the Maori position according to Maori community expectations. Furthermore, the credentials of Maori leadership have been transformed by diverse thinking Maori individuals and groups who are associated with a multiplicity of social institutions both Maori and non-Maori. For many Maori Educational Administrators, Maori Community expectations such as working primarily for their benefit and accepting commitment to improve the Maori position according to their agenda, are unreasonable. This thesis concludes that Maori Leadership in Educational Administration functions in a diversity of Maori realities. Within these contexts, there are Maori leadership variables which are significant to Maori social groups. However, Maori Educationists are not always well equipped to perform effectively in situations characterised by a tension between the ideological positions of governance and Maori self-determination as expressed by the individuals and groups concerned. This is compounded by very demanding Maori community expectations and the conformity required by education agency responsibilities, which in turn affects Maori education outcomes. Teacher training and personal development that focus on Maori Leadership in Education may improve this situation.