The mat we are trying to weave at the University of Waikato to address educational outcomes, disparities and inequities in education for Māori and Pacific learners will weave rich data, stories and experience. Our goal is to use data to be better informed about what works for Māori and Pacific learners and what does not. Data is useful in building a more complete picture of what is happening to students, but student voice and previous research that has already captured the voices of Māori and Pacific experts, educators, students, families and communities can tell us more about why we are getting these outcomes. As we harness data to improve our knowledge, we must not forget the stories already in the mat and the stories being woven in the mat, for the stories are the gold.
This report details our work on this data-informed rather than data-driven project. It discusses how improved data and data analytic capability enhanced our understanding of the literature on Māori and Pacific learner success and the experience of Māori and Pacific learners at UoW. Our research and the report, however, also unapologetically privilege case studies through literature and Māori and Pacific student voices. We lay out the various materials – data, literature and voice – that will form our mat with this in mind, weaving them together in order to achieve better outcomes for Māori and Pacific learners at our university. These learners are the why of this mahi. Their success will create a beautiful pattern in the
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