What a fascinating and potentially heart-warming piece of news: Finally, New Zealand history is going to be compulsory in New Zealand schools.
Akoranga (learners) across the nation are going to be taught about the histories of our diverse nation.
Obviously, featuring in that teaching and learning will be the history of Moriori. Their pacifist existence, their origins, beliefs, tapu and manawa ka.
As a people with a well documented pre-contact history and devastating post-contact history, the history and story of Te Imi Moriori provides a different perspective into our sometimes darker past, but also into a message of hope and determination that all Kiwis would recognise.
Alas, nowhere in the media releases, or quoted conversations do we see any mention of Moriori. Does this mean that another generation of New Zealanders will develop, ignorant of this vital history and bereft of any factual content about the way successive governments treated an indigenous people of New Zealand?
According to the Ministry for Cultural Heritage, the teaching will “span the full range of New Zealanders’ experiences and are expected to include:
- The Arrival of Māori to Aotearoa New Zealand
- First encounters and early colonial history of Aotearoa New Zealand
- Te Tiriti o Waitangi / Treaty of Waitangi and its history
- Colonisation of, and immigration to, Aotearoa New Zealand, including the New Zealand Wars
- Evolving national identity of Aotearoa New Zealand in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries
- Aotearoa New Zealand’s role in the Pacific
- Aotearoa New Zealand in the late 20th century and evolution of a national identity with cultural plurality.”
I don’t see anything in there about Te Imi Moriori
There was some hope that maybe RadioNZ would get it right with their article (here) but our hopes have been dashed there too.
So, the only way that Moriori will get a look in to the soon-to-be-constructed NZ History curriculum, will be if YOU demand it. No-one else is going to do it.
Me Rongo (as always- in peace)