Ngareta Timutimu was appointed Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit
"An education gets you life choices and many of our people don't get those life choices."
This is the sentiment of Ngareta Timutimu, who has participated in all education sectors from early years to tertiary, in governance and management, and in Māori and English mediums for over more than 30 years.
It is her passion for Māori rangatahi (youth) that has led Timutimu on a voyage that today has been recognised in the Queens' Birthday Honours as she has been appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori and education. Timutimu said it was on behalf of her whānau and her mahi that she accepted the honour, as the humble Matapihi woman said the kaupapa started with the support of her uncles and aunties, who were great role models.
Ngareta completed her postgraduate study. She has made Māori language a critical part of any project she is involved in, which has been reflected in her past work as a secondary teacher up to principal level, and as a tertiary lecturer in education. Now her commitment in supporting Māori learners to achieve success whilst also understanding who they are informs her current work as Ngai Te Rangi Iwi Education Manager, engaging with more than 40 schools and early childhood education centres in Tauranga.