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Faculty of Education and Social Work

International Pasifika ECE conference - Voyaging the Oceanic Terrains: Sustainability in Pasifika ECE

Professor Airini: Thompson Rivers University, British Columbia, Canada

Professor Airini is Dean at the Faculty of Human, Social & Educational Development, Thompson Rivers University, Canada. She concurrently holds honorary Adjunct Professor appointments at Victoria University (Melbourne) and AUT University (Auckland). As a Fulbright Scholar based in Washington DC she researched how to convert higher education policy into better results for under-served students. Professor Airini led strategy and policy development in OECD and developing nations, including the Cook Islands’ 15-year education strategy (ECE to tertiary) and the Tongan teacher education review. Professor Airini worked for UNESCO (Paris) leading international education resource development. As the first Principal Advisor, Pasifika with the Tertiary Education Commission Professor Airini played a key role in a new investment approach for all tertiary organisations, with the expectation of parity, at least, for Māori and Pasifika students.


Keynote Address

Remembering who we are: Pacific knowledge making for Pasifika ECE futures

Voyaging across our Pacific Ocean has been possible because of the creation of knowledge for journeys beyond known horizons, and the collective will and individual courage to voyage. These are the characteristics of pioneers and innovators in Pasifika ECE; our ‘voyagers’ for better Pacific futures. This presentation is a celebration of new knowledge that has come from Pasifika education research and its potential to inform future journeys in Pasifika ECE in particular and education in general. This is one part of an emerging international story of indigenising education and research. The case is made for knowledge creation that genuinely draws on methods specific to Pacific cultures, languages, communities, and aspirations. Through remembering who we are as courageous knowledge makers we make possible generationally significant research. With a view to new horizons in education through Pasifika early years research, Airini will map research approaches and priorities relevant to instructors, researchers, and decision-makers. The potential for Pasifika ECE to lead voyages to new horizons in education has never been greater.