O le Tautai Matapalapala: Leadership strategies for supporting Pasifika students in New Zealand schools


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Journal of Educational Leadership, Policy and Practice

New Zealand Educational Administration and Leadership Society

Subject: Education


ISSN: 1178-8690





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VOLUME 32 , ISSUE 2 (December 2017) > List of articles

O le Tautai Matapalapala: Leadership strategies for supporting Pasifika students in New Zealand schools

Tufulasifa’atafatafa Ova Taleni / Angus Macfarlane / Sonja Macfarlane / Jo Fletcher

Keywords : Pasifika; schooling; leadership; supporting achievement; culturally appropriate practices

Citation Information : Journal of Educational Leadership, Policy and Practice. Volume 32, Issue 2, Pages 16-32, DOI: https://doi.org/10.21307/jelpp-2017-0015

License : (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

Published Online: 03-June-2019



This article addresses effective school leaders so that leaders may navigate robust, vigorous and well-thought through changes and supports in schools to raise the engagement and achievement of Pasifika learners. From a Pasifika perspective, a “true leader” in education is an effective leader, a leader with high integrity (aloaia) and standing, who is driven by culturally responsive principles, values, aspirations and world views of the students. Such a leader utilizes a personal humanitarian approach with the self-belief, courage, determination and perseverance to wholeheartedly take students from where they are currently at in learning, to where they need to be. This research used Talanoa methodology to explore the perceptions of four principals on supporting Pasifika students in primary and secondary New Zealand schools. This research found a significant need for effective leadership by principals to navigate educational changes that genuinely make a difference to unlock doors of opportunities in every school to raise achievement and wellbeing for all Pasifika learners.

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