Wednesday September 24, 2014   Last updated 14:24PM

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Education failure a national issue

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A Māori education group is warning that failure to address the way the education system is failing Māori will affect the whole country.

Ngā Kaikokiri Matauranga is backing claims that the New Zealand education system cannot be considered world class when one in three Māori children leave school with no qualification.

Spokesperson Awanui Black says while individual teachers make a huge effort with tamariki and rangatahi, a system wide attitudinal shift is needed.

"If we don't pick up our game as a nation, because this is about the nation, it's not just about Māori, by 2050 this country; this economy will be similar to a place like Jamaica because we are going to have a significant underclass. It's actually in the country's best interests, so how do we do it," he says.

Mr Black says hapu and iwi are moving to fill gaps in the education system, with some iwi investing significantly in programmes such as numeracy and literacy.

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