We receive many emails, letters, cards from visitors to our campus for a wide range of events and activities. These are some examples.

SOCIAL JUSTICE EDUCATION SYMPOSIUM: ENGAGING YOUTH & COMMUNITY (Sept 2010)

Testimonials

CELEBRATION DAY 2009

Testimonials

Last week I went to Otara to hear some inspirational korero from educators who believe in social justice. It was such a relief to listen to the wisdom of Professor Jeff Duncan Andrade and Professor David Stovall who are also high school teachers from the mean streets of urban Oakland and Chicago.

They have a strong connection to a fantastic Kura in Otara once known as Clover Park but reborn as Te Whānau o Tupuranga. The exchanges that take place between these schools in Otara and the USA are all about social justice in education for marginalised youth.

They inspired me to re-commit to a critical analysis of education. And to look more closely at the Otara School where they are members of the extended family.

Something is cooking at Te Whānau o Tupuranga and it looks really healthy. Everyone paid tribute to school Principal Ann Milne and her team who have created a centre of cultural pride and international solidarity in high school education. We badly need this kind of educational renaissance and exchange.
— Catherine Delahunty, Member of Parliament, Green Party

What an amazing day at the Otara hosted symposium! I really really liked in particular the rangatahi being our guides and hosts for the day. They were outstanding and a credit to the whole community.

I wish the media would report on those sorts of stories instead of the slanted sensational reporting they do on our young people these days. The content of the day itself was thought provoking and fantastic really, and very timely.
— Marama Davidson, Advisor, Human Rights and Race Relations, Human Rights Commission

I wonder if you have had a chance to catch your breath yet from the most wonderful symposium that you, the whānau and Otara hosted.Nga mihi nui kia a koe!

It certainly was an absolute privilege to have the opportunity to listen to the speakers-buy the books! and be totally inspired by the speakers, the rangatahi, and once again your school! It has allowed me to reflect on my own pedagogy and put a critical lens over it, as well as a whole lot of other things.
— Huia O’Sullivan, Engagement Advisor, Families Commission
I still can’t get over what I saw, heard and experienced, but I do know that it was an honour and privilege to be there and to witness what can be done with strength of heart, absolute belief and commitment from you, your staff, your community and your tamariki mokopuna to make the dream a reality….a wonderful, wonderful achievement indeed.

I did say that buildings do not necessarily make a place…it is what goes on inside that counts…..and I counted many times and saw the many things in which your staff and tamariki were involved…..so exciting, alive, fun, creative, challenging, refreshing…just oozing from the walls of every room and building. The wairua and mauri of the place hit me on Monday when I walked in for the first time into the hall with all the tamariki there…yes, I did have myself a tangi!

The Celebration Day was unforgettable and what I loved was the manner in which all the recipients were acknowledged by their school, their whānau and their community. The photos and personal profiles for each one for all the audience to see was brilliant. The pride in the recipients’ faces and the pride and aroha from the families was absolutely wonderful.

The acknowledgements in tikanga from whānau and the waiata, haka and sasa from tamariki from the Pacific Island units and Tupuranga were just outstanding……it wasn’t a competition…they were telling their mates just how proud they were of them….it was fabulous.
— Matua Dave Para