toka kāhuarau: (noun) metamorphic rock.
Ko te toka kāhuarau: Ko te momo toka ka hua mai ina huri te hanga me te āhua o tētahi atu o ngā toka mā te pā mai o te wera me te pēhanga i roto i takanga o te wā roa (RP 2009:407); The type of rock that results when transformed into another type of rock through the application of heat and pressure over a long period of time (Source).
As we head back into a new school year, there is continued appetite to do things differently, reconfigure learning programmes and classrooms, systems and processes so that we are increasingly walking the talk on learner-centred education. At the risk of kicking off with a buzzword, we can describe what we are collectively trying to achieve here as transformation.
Transformation is one of those ‘weasel words’ that can bend to many purposes. In te reo Māori, it can be described as kāhuarau. Metaphors of the alternative of molten rock might come to mind, as do koru spirals and butterfly metamorphoses.
In CORE, we take a clear position on transformation, acknowledging that it looks different in different educational contexts. Our kaupapa here is that that we believe that all people are of value, that everyone is unique and deserves to belong because we know that our education system is not (yet) at the point where all our learners and their families see themselves as well served.