The appraisal of commitment to biculturalism

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Keith, Caroline
Author ORCID Profiles (clickable)
Master of Educational Leadership and Management
Unitec Institute of Technology
Bassett, Martin
Howse, Jo
Masters Dissertation
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
New Zealand
secondary schools
secondary teachers
secondary leaders
appraisal standards
Standards for the Teaching Profession (N.Z.)
Treaty of Waitangi (1840)
Keith, C. (2018). The Appraisal of Commitment to Biculturalism. An upublished dissertation submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Educational Leadership and Management, Unitec Institute of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand.
Teaching Standards have been an integral part of appraisal in New Zealand for nearly 20 years, however, there is a paucity of literature on teachers’ perspectives on professional standards and the nature of their use in the appraisal process. There are six Standards for the Teaching Profession, the first of which is called the Treaty of Waitangi partnership. Anecdotal evidence indicates that teachers and leaders at secondary schools lack confidence to engage with this Standard. Therefore, although the Treaty of Waitangi is the founding document of New Zealand, teachers’ and leaders’ understanding of what a commitment to the Treaty of Waitangi partnership looks like in practice may need development. Using an interpretive approach, this study investigated how commitment to biculturalism was appraised in two New Zealand secondary schools. The three research questions guiding this study were: What is the relationship between appraisal and the professional standards related to biculturalism? In what ways is commitment to biculturalism appraised? What challenges do teachers and appraisers encounter in the appraisal of their commitment to biculturalism? Two senior leaders, two middle leaders and two classroom teachers participated in semi structured interviews. Findings from this research exposed that teachers and leaders lack a shared understanding of the Treaty of Waitangi partnership Standard. Whilst an effective performance appraisal system is based on mutual agreement between appraiser and appraisee about performance expectations, the scope of the Treaty of Waitangi partnership Standard may require this ‘mutual agreement’ to be led by the Education Council, and the Board of Trustees and senior leaders of schools. This research highlights the need for a partnership between the Ministry of Education, the Education Council, and Boards of Trustees and leaders of schools to develop and implement a national programme of leadership development for those with appraisal responsibilities which is contextualised, supportive and underpinned by the Treaty of Waitangi partnership
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