Logan Park High School history teacher Paul Enright and his
former pupil, Queen's Park High School history teacher Lara
Hearn, catch up on some reading. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
There is a certain level of pride a history teacher can
take from co-writing an NCEA teaching unit for the Ministry of
But when the co-author is one of your former history pupils,
it is all the more special.
Logan Park High School humanities head Paul Enright (59) and
Queen's High School humanities head Lara Hearn (43) were
recently invited to Auckland by Maori Affairs Minister Pita
Sharples for the national launch of their written NCEA level
The unit is an investigation of an historic event or place of
significance to New Zealanders - in this case, a study of Te
Maiharoa, a Maori prophet, pacifist and protester about Ngai
Tahu land issues in the 19th century.
Despite Mr Enright being a previous Woolf Fisher scholarship
recipient, a published author, editor of the New Zealand
Teachers' History Journal and the inspiration for many pupils
to complete tertiary history degrees, Mrs Hearn said working
with her former history teacher was easy.
''It wasn't awkward. We've stayed in touch over the years.
''When I started teaching at Queen's High School, I called on
Paul as a mentor often.''
But Mr Enright said that relationship had changed over time.
''It became more of a partnership. We're both experienced
professionals and we spark ideas off each other.''
When the New Zealand History Teachers' Association was given
responsibility for writing new achievement standards for
NCEA, they were given the task.
''We were on the association committee at the time, so we got
co-opted to write the standards,'' Mrs Hearn said.
Other projects followed. For both teachers, their invitation
to the launch recognised their ''lead teacher'' talents as
well as their willingness to research and present NCEA units
on Maori leaders and events of significance to New Zealanders
- topics many other non-Maori historians were reluctant to
Now that their efforts had been recognised by Dr Sharples,
both hoped it would inspire other history teachers to deliver
such topics in the classroom.
The duo said they would continue to write more such resources
for New Zealand secondary school history teachers.