November 16, 2020
Maori principals want te reo taught now
The head of Te Akatea, the Māori Principals’ Association, says Māori needs to be made a compulsory subject now.
Myles Ferris says that will send the message to teachers across the country they need to upskill, and will drive additional spending.
He says it’s going to happen eventually, so it might as well be now – and he believes it will get widespread support.
"I've asked a lot of Pākehā people 'if I could wave a magic wand and tap you on the shoulder and you would speak te reo Māori tomorrow, would you take it?' I haven't had anyone turn me down year. This generation, this rising generation of five-year-olds who are starting school in 2020 and 2021, what if we could give them the language as well" Mr Ferris says.
He says the Teaching Council already has criteria that teachers show improvement in te reo me ōnā tikanga to maintain their registration, but it’s left up to principals to judge whether that is happening.
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