Jacqui Pennington Cropped 1

Jacqui Pennington

Bachelor of Education
Accredited Facilitator
+64 27 504 7269

I have been involved in our education system both as a kaiako and parent for over 30 years. My main area of experience has been in the beginning years of primary school and I am passionate about developing positive transition practices and having close connections with our colleagues in the ECE sector.

Over the last four years in my role as Across School Lead Teacher for a Kāhui Ako I had the privilege of extending my experiences into the secondary sector as well. My feelings of discomfort in being part of a system that is inequitable for many whānau and tamariki has deepened, and through my journey of working with Poutama Pounamu I am filled with hope that together we have the tools to create an environment based on equity and excellence for all ākonga.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi

As a Pākehā woman, I am aware of my responsibility to acknowledge the past injustices. As I grow in my role I am committed to working with other educators to deepen an awareness and understanding of the history of New Zealand around Te Tiriti o Waitangi and its significance to society in the present day.

In the education space I see the need for all levels of our school communities (kaiako, leaders and governance) to grow their awareness and understanding in order to meet our collective responsibilities.

Kaupapa Māori

I am at the start of my journey with Kaupapa Māori ways of being and knowing. It is important that, as a Pākehā New Zealander, I actively seek to learn from, and with, tangata whenua in order to engage honourably as tangata te tiriti in this kaupapa. It is exciting to be involved with schools and centres as we strive for the vision of all ākonga belonging to a place of learning that recognises the tāonga that they are.

Critical Consciousness

As we start to examine our eurocentric education system, the challenge is to check our colonised lens, take a critical look at the systems, structures and practices that perpetuate the inequitable status quo, and take action. By drawing together critically conscious action informed by kaupapa Māori we can collectively work towards a more inclusive future that will benefit all ākonga.

A colleague shared with me this beautiful whakataukīto I have beside me as I start my journey of examining my place/role in Aotearoa.

’Ko te whakaiti te whare o te whakaaro nui’
humility is the bastion of the generous person.

(Te Wharehuia was responsible for the first words of King Tuheita’s covenant)

As Pākeha, this speaks to me of the need to humble myself to enable space for indigenous and other currently marginalised world views to influence our education system.

Whakawhāiti (inclusion)

I support the idea that inclusion promotes belonging and values all members of our communities. It is vital to foster respectful relationships as a foundation for inclusion.

In education it is especially important to recognise that our ākonga and their whānau bring with them rich and diverse experiences, cultures, and world views and to actively seek ways that give authentic voice to these in all aspects of our schools and early learning centres. This will support us all to work in more inclusive ways that celebrate diversity as a strength.