Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 17. July 18th, 1973
Maori language and literature courses in 1974 will have severe class restrictions if there is no immediate improvement in the staffing situation. Enrolments for Maori 101 and 102 will have to drop from this years total of about 130 to a maximum of 50. Maori 111 and 112 for which about 100 people are eligible will be able to take only 30 students.
This restriction of numbers seems paradoxical when interest in Maori language is flourishing and Government policy purports to sponsor the teaching of Maori. The number of schools teaching Maori has doubled in the last two years and consequently far more students will be coming to University wanting to take Maori.
This situation came into the open at the meeting of the Faculty of Arts, Languages and Literature on June 28 when the Deans asked departments to submit their proposals for course restrictions in 1974. Mr Koro Dewes, senior lecturer in Maori spoke out on the unsatisfactory nature of the staffing of the Maori language section, particularly the conditions of his junior lecturer who is trying to cope with 120 first year students. Mr Dewes was forced into suggesting these restrictions because of the drastic nature of the problem. Effectively, they mean that extramural students now catered for by the department, many of whom are older Maoris pursuing their studies in their language, will have to be dropped. Also, teachers college students who have courses in their own college will be barred from enrolling in Maori at the University.
Despite the great regret with which Mr Dewes made these restrictions they will go on next year unless the department Is staffed by at least three full-time teaching staff members. If the University does not give finance for extra staff then it looks like the students' association will have the dubious honour of fulfilling its pledge and employing the extra staff member itself.