February 05, 2015
Funding boost needed to keep reo growing
New Zealand First is backing a call by primary school teachers for proper funding to te reo Maori in schools.
Maori affairs spokesperson Pita Paraone says the curriculum clearly states all students have the option to acquire knowledge of te reo Maori me ona tikanga.
He says money that should have gone into the area has instead been diverted into National Standards.
Mr Paraone, who before reentering parliament was acting chief executive of the Maori Language Commission Te Taura Whiri, says teaching te reo in schools is the only way to will deliver the Maori Language Strategy to increase the status of the language and increase the number of New Zealanders who can speak it.
He says we need to upskill current educators, employ more resource teachers of Maori, and fund the resources needed for them to succeed.
The new president to the primary teachers’ union NZEI Te Riu Roa, Louise Green, says schools would like to provide the language but need more resources to do so.
" There is an expectation in the curriculum and my view is if there is an expectation in the curriculum it needs to be well resourced so that teachers in schools can actually deliver the New Zealand curriculum which is a fabulous document " she says.
Louise Green says 85 percent of Maori children are in mainstream schools, so it is important they get a chance to reach their full potential in those settings.
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