Is Asia Represented in New Zealand Secondary School Curricula?

By Kitchen, Margaret | Curriculum Matters, Annual 2009 | Go to article overview

Is Asia Represented in New Zealand Secondary School Curricula?


Kitchen, Margaret, Curriculum Matters


Introduction

It is likely that 16 percent of the population will be Asian by 2026 (Statistics New Zealand, 2008). Given New Zealand's current and projected demographic profile, and its forecast future reliance on its Asian neighbours, an Asian component in secondary school curricula, incorporating knowledge about Asia and Asian languages, coupled with a focus on developing the disposition and skills to interact with people from Asia, would seem justified. The New Zealand Secretary for Education, Karen Sewell, in her foreword to The New Zealand Curriculum (Ministry of Education, 2007a, p. 4), writes of a societal or state agenda, of the need to equip young New Zealanders with the "knowledge, competencies and values they will need to be successful citizens". This call to educate young people to work together to create a better society reflects discussion of significant changes in Aotearoa New Zealand's underpinning educational philosophies (see, for example, Adams, 2005; Clark, 2005). Whether social and economic purposes can be bedfellows (Codd, 2005) is not the focus of this paper. One strand underlying the concept of "successful citizens" is the argument that successful citizens create wealth and the acknowledgement that economics now drive education (Codd, 2005); another strand, complementary or not, is that relationships and connections between people with different life experiences, and between people and ideas, are vital and result in both knowledge creation (Bolstad & Gilbert, 2008) and a cohesive society. Whatever strength or value these arguments have, using the rich resources of Asian students to contribute to the generation of new knowledge and new ways of thinking and doing seems a useful orientation for curricular implementation. Writing about Western society, Cummins (2004, p. xv) argues that "any student who emerges into our culturally diverse society speaking only one language and with a monocultural perspective on the world can legitimately be considered educationally ill-prepared".

The demographics

The increasing diversity of the school population was a fundamental driver in the revision of the curriculum (Ministry of Education, 2007a, p. 4). Diversity is at times used imprecisely in New Zealand educational terminology. Alton-Lee's 2003 synthesis of best evidence commissioned by the Ministry of Education uses diverse as an epithet to describe all school students, but in the field of second-language acquisition research, and in this paper, diversity refers to linguistically and culturally diverse backgrounds (Nieto, 2004). Secondary schools, which are the focus of this paper, being familiar contexts for the writer, have significantly different demographics from even 10 years ago, and the fastest growing sector is the widely disparate group described as "Asian", comprising groups who differ widely in history, culture and language. While the category "Asian" is used in data gathering as a panethnic label, and is used similarly here, it is noted that it is also a term used in racist discourse and is not acceptable amongst students as a nomenclature (Bartley & Spoonley, 2008). More than 9 percent of New Zealand's population currently identify themselves as Asian (Statistics New Zealand, 2008). Statistics New Zealand identifies the main Asian groups, in order of numbers, as Chinese, Indian, Korean, Filipino, Japanese, Sri Lankan, Cambodian and Thai. Not included in these statistics are the 7,331 foreign fee-paying students (FFPs) in secondary schools (Education Counts, 2007). Most of the FFPs are Asian. However, it is the public education system, not the export education industry and the possible threats it poses to the public system, that is the main focus of discussion here. (See Codd, 2005 for further discussion of educational policy and the challenges of globalisation.) The mere number of students of Asian descent in the public education system warrants an orientation towards Asia in the implementation of The New Zealand Curriculum (Ministry of Education, 2007a). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Is Asia Represented in New Zealand Secondary School Curricula?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.