Activity: Participating in or organising an event types › Contribution to conference
Education in most parts of Oceania draws heavily on Western concepts, practices and theories. This is certainly the case in the island nations and territories of the Pacific, and in the delivery of education to the Indigenous peoples of New Zealand and Australia. Even in recent years, education reform agendas have reflected Western values and models at management, curriculum and pedagogical levels. The colonial inheritance lives on in the Pacific, especially through the provision of advanced training in English-speaking countries and in development assistance programs that assume the primacy of Western values and practices in education. Regrettably, reform agendas have not always met with success (Puamau PQ & Teasdale GR, 2007). In fact, stories of failure are heard repeatedly, and education stakeholders are constantly faced with difficulties and challenges in implementing these reforms. This requires us to probe into the role of culture in the implementation of the reforms and reconsider their congruity with the Oceania socio-economic and political landscapes. This also reminds us of Chen’s (2010), Asia as method, challenge to reconsider the uncritical adoption of theories, such as those from the west, as they are generally written within the prevailing system of local discourses. Chen (2010) argues that establishing dialogical platforms between Western and local theories is expected to bridge the gap associated with the so called colonization and decolonization of theories.This panel aims to establish an academic alliance of ECRs to investigate trans-Oceania educational issues through examining and incorporating local wisdom and theories. It also helps us to de-centre ourselves from an obsession with the West and Western knowledge, culture, theories and epistemologies.