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He Urunga Tū

He Urunga Tū – An Entrance to Engagement was born out of a challenge for RTLB best practice to:

  • reflect the principles of the Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  • be culturally responsive and inclusive
  • embed Ka Hikitia  – Accelerating Success 2013-2017 [1] and Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Maori Learners into our practice
  • validate and acknowledge the “work before the work” that takes place before RTLB can engage with the Request for Support
  • clarify the roles of RTLB, whānau, kaiako and kura through a culturally responsive lensvalidate and acknowledge the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual domains of the person/people involved
  • create a safe working platform for RTLB to conduct themselves in a way where they could be most inclusive and least intrusive
  • honour the entire process from the beginning to the end while recognising that every phase of the process is valued.

He Urunga Tū is a framework that was developed by Ngā Pouwhirinakitanga who are Māori RTLB working in schools and kura throughout Aotearoa. The framework was developed in collaboration with iwi around the country and emphasises the importance of RTLB being welcomed in to schools and homes as manuhiri (or visitors), and those provided with support as tangata whenua. This allows those that are supported to hold on to their mana and self-determine the pathway forward for them and their tamariki, mokopuna.

Using this framework RTLB may enable ākonga, kaiako and whānau self-determination.  RTLB are manuhiri who are invited to facilitate, support and nurture the child through their learning journey. ‘Ahakoa ko wai, ahakoa nō hea - No matter whom they are or where they are from’.

The He Urunga Tū framework enables RTLB to be effective, inclusive, culturally responsive and safe in their practice.  It guides and supports RTLB to facilitate the process in a manner that is respectful and professional and maintains positive working relationships.   

He Urunga Tū – An Entrance to Engagement framework contains key phases that align well with He Pikorua.

He Urunga Tū He Pikorua
Ngā Whakaritenga / Waharoa & Whakaeke Whakawhanaungatanga
Whaikōrero Kohikohi
Hongi / Kai Ngātahi Āta whakaaro / Tātai / Whakamahi / Whai whakaaro
Whakawātea Mana Motuhake

The He Urunga Tū framework uses the analogy of pōwhiri to illustrate that RTLB work in kura is always by invitation to support the ākonga, kaiako and kura.

He Urunga Tū is about:

  • Tangata Whenua :People of the land. Those who have authority in a particular setting.
  • Manuhiri: Anyone new to the setting invited to facilitate, support and nurture the child through their learning journey.
  • Tangata Whenua and Manuhiri may include Mokopuna, Tamaiti, Whānau, Hapū, Iwi, Ākonga, Hāpori, Liaison RTLB, learning support coordinators, school staff, Government and Non-Government Agencies.

[1] Now superceded by the refreshed Māori education strategy: Ka Hikitia

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