Kuni Elaine Hineatauira Jenkins

Ngāti Porou

1941 -

Kuni Jenkins was born in Porangahau and was educated at Porangahau, Hastings and at Hukarere. She lived in Wellington for seventeen years and trained as a teacher at Wellington Teachers’ College from She married, had three children and taught in primary schools in the Hutt Valley. In 1980 she moved to Christchurch for a year to become an itinerant Māori resource teacher at schools in Linwood and St. Martins. She then taught in country schools in Auckland, and was Principal of Aka Aka County School and Principal of Oruawharo School for three years. From 1983-88 she was Assistant Principal of junior classes at Kingsford, Mangere, and began part-time studies at Auckland University, graduating with a B.A. in Māori Studies and Education in 1987 and a Masters in Education in 1990. Since 1990 she has been a lecturer in Education with the B.Ed programme attached to the Auckland College of Education.

Biographical sources

  • Interview and phone contact with Kuni Jenkins August 1992 and 4 Sep 1998.


  • Waiata Māori for Schools. Comp. W. Kaa, J. Tangaere, K. Jenkins, and J. Kaa. [Wellington, N.Z.]: Wellington, N.Z. Education Board, 1977. Rpt. 1987. Rpt. Wellington, N.Z.: Learning Media, Ministry of Education, 1991.
  • This is a collection of 112 waiata written in Māori with English translation and accompanied by a set of cassette tapes.
  • Non-fiction

  • Te Hono Ki Te Wairua (The Spiritual Link): A Māori Perspective on the Spiritual Dimensions that Affect the Social Well-Being of the Society at Large.
  • Presented in the Royal Commission booklet. No further details.
  • "Overview of Māori Education with Special Reference to the Situation of Māori Women and Girls within Secondary Education." PPTA Journal No details.
  • "Reflections on the Status of Māori Women." 1986. Te Pua. 1.1 (1992): 37-45.
  • Jenkins discusses the status of Māori women from two perspectives: the Mythical Paradigm in which she examines the role of women in Māori mythology, and from key tribal ancestresses and contemporary women. This paper was presented at Auckland University and at several Māori women’s gatherings.
  • Becoming Literate, Becoming English: A Research into the Beginnings of English Literacy within Māori Society. [Auckland, N.Z.]: Research Unit for Māori Education, U of Auckland, [1993]. Monograph no. 14.
  • Te Maranga o Te Ihu o Hukarere: A Photographic History. Napier, N.Z.: Te Whanau o Hukarere, c.1994.
  • Written and compiled by Kuni Jenkins and Kay Morris Matthews for Te Whanau o Hukarere.
  • Hukarere and the Politics of Māori Girls’ Schooling. Palmerston North, N.Z.: Dunmore Press, 1995.
  • Co-authors Kuni Jenkins and Kay Morris Matthews, Hukarere Board of Trustees with Te Whanau o Hukarere.
  • The Native Schools System=Nga Kura Māori no Nga Ra o Mua: Research Project Progress Report, Auckland, N.Z.: Research Unit for Māori Education, U of Auckland, 1995.
  • Co-authors Judith Simon, Kuni Jenkins and Kay Morris Mathews.
  • The Evaluation of Te Putahitanga Mātauranga: final report. Prepared for the Research Division, the Ministry of Education and Te Putahitanga Mātauranga; prepared by the International Research Institute for Māori and Indigenous Education. [Wellington, N.Z.]: Ministry of Education, 2004.
  • Co-authors Margie Kahukura Hohepa, Kuni E.H. Jenkins, Jo Mane, Dale Sherman-Godinet and Sharon Toi.
  • Papers/Presentations

  • The Treaty Under Siege: Papers presented at the NZARE Conference, (1994). Auckland, N.Z.: Research Unit for Maori Education, U of Auckland, [1995]. Monograph no. 22.
  • Māori Literacy: Paper Presented to Adult and Community Education Association in Aotearoa (ACEA), Canterbury Branch at the WEA Centre, 7 August 1995. No further details.
  • Theses

  • "Te Ihi, Te Mana, Te Wehi O Te Ao Tuhi: Māori Print Literacy from 1814-1855: Literacy, Power and Colonisation." Diss. Auckland U, 1991.
  • Haere Tahi Taua: An Account of Aitanga in Māori Struggle for Schooling.
  • PhD.thesis. Auckland U, Education Department, 2000.