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Ministry of Education.

Te Awe o Ngā Toroa


In July 2010, the He Kākano programme officially began after the Ministry of Education selected a joint proposal from the University of Waikato and Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi. The partnership was named by kaumatua Sir Hirini Moko Mead as "Te Awe o ngā Toroa", and it is this which is represented by the He Kākano logo.


Te awe is a white feather and refers to the rarely seen feathers below the wings of the albatross. Te awe is also a symbol of leadership.

The image of the single feather (te awe, representing the individual) relates to the proverb "The human soul is the rare feather of the albatross", from which the phrase "Te Awe o ngā Toroa" comes.

The kowhaiwhai pattern represents the spirit (wairua) of the individual, growing to grasp and seek knowledge.

The shape of the logo represents the cocoon or seed, which embraces and protects all people. Ngā Toroa (albatrosses) are birds noted for their ability to sustain themselves in flight over long distances and for long periods.

The partners

The University of Waikato

The University of Waikato is committed to providing students with world-class, research-driven teaching, in a dynamic learning environment with excellent facilities. The quality of our staff, their teaching and their research manifest across all disciplines. The Faculty of Education is one of the larger Schools of the University of Waikato and is responsible for both the academic and professional pre-service and continuing education of teachers.

Currently approximately 2,500 students are enrolled in the School. The He Kākano strategy and programme is based on the Te Kotahitanga research and professional development project in the School of Education at the University of Waikato. The project works alongside more than 50 schools to make a difference for Māori students in education, using a kaupapa Māori research methodology that incorporates the principles inherent in the Treaty of Waitangi.

Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi

Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi is focused on being a centre of excellence for Kaupapa Māori learning and the advancement of indigenous research. We see ourselves as a provider of high quality mulit-leveled programmes where staff and students are engaged in teaching and learning, whether it be for bridging certificates, bachelor degrees, Masters dissertations or Doctoral theses.

Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi seeks continuous improvement in the widening range of programmes it delivers as it seeks to respond to the ever-changing needs our communities. We want to provide high level qualifications that will support students as graduates of Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi to be strong, capable and critically engaged in their chosen pathways.

He Kākano governance

The Governance body consists of the Dean of the Faculty of Education, University of Waikato, Professor Alister Jones and the Chief Executive of Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi, Emeritus Professor Graham Smith. Both provide the strategic direction for the Te Awe o ngā Toroa partnership, guided by Kaumātua Professor Sir Hirini Moko Mead and Lady June Mead.

He Kākano operations

The Professional Operations Manager (Paora Howe) and Professional Development Director (Hine Waitere) are guided by Professor Russell Yates and experienced members of the Te Kotahitanga team (Dr Mere Berryman and Te Arani Barrett) to ensure the Manutaki have the tools they need to support their schools.

The Ministry of Education managers and senior managers provide the advisory support required to guide the project.

In practice, all members of the He Kākano team work closely together to develop the tools needed to support the schools.

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