Waikato Journal of Education


"I know quite a lot about the Treaty but I still don't know what to do!" This paper addresses the tension created by new demands for beginning teachers to be able to demonstrate their knowledge and use of the Treaty of Waitangi in their first years of teaching in schools. For many years the expectations placed on teachers in regard to understanding and implementing the Treaty have been vague and inconsistent. While many beginning teachers have good understandings in terms of history and content from their teacher education courses, they often lack confidence and direction in translating these into practice. The advent of new professional standards incorporated into the collective employment contracts of primary and secondary beginning teachers requires clearer understandings, not only for the beginning teachers but for their tutor teachers as well. This pape'¢ also discusses and compares different versions of the Treaty for there are three that are relevant to any discussion of Treaty issues. Finally, this paper explores ways in which student and beginning teachers may create a framework for such implementations to occur. The focus is on the establishment of a set of understandings that allow the creation of principles linked to each of the articles of the Treaties. This process can provide realistic ways in which beginning teachers can demonstrate that they do meet the dimensions relating to the Treaty of Waitangi in the new professional standards.


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