Cohesive policy could better support te reo Māori in kura and schools
11 September 2018
Government policy to support te reo Māori in kura and schools has lacked cohesion and has yet to address the shortage of
reo Māori teachers. This includes teachers of the language and those able to teach in te reo Māori.
These are findings from research by Te Wāhanga-NZCER exploring what supports the wellbeing of te reo in kura and
schools. The research report is called Tautokona te reo: The wellbeing of te reo Māori in kura and schools.
Lead author, Dr Maraea Hunia, said ‘Whānau told us that “wellbeing” included te reo Māori being valued, normal, and used
across generations by an increasing number of highly proficient speakers in a wide range of contexts.’
Participants felt that government policy could be more supportive because reo Māori education remains hard to access. In
the absence of focussed policy, whānau efforts have been the mainstay of support. Indeed, some policies not directly
related to te reo Māori—including the National Standards and Ngā Whanaketanga—had unintended impacts on the language.
‘An audit of policies that examines their effects on te reo Māori would provide a way forward,’ said Dr Hunia.
As well as looking at research participants’ views of government policy, the study explored kura and schools’ actions
and practices that support te reo, and explored ways that they work with stakeholders to support the wellbeing of te reo
‘The report includes tools for whānau, teachers, boards of trustees, and policy makers because we want to share the
good things that are happening in kura and schools,’ said Dr Hunia.
See the report on the NZCER website: