More than half of NZ thinks Te Reo Māori should be core primary school subject, new survey reveals

A new survey reveals more than half of New Zealanders say Te Reo Māori should be a core subject in primary schools.

According to Stats NZ, data about attitudes to the Māori language was collected for the first time in New Zealand's biggest survey of well-being – the General Social Survey (GSS) 2016.

In this survey, 53 per cent of the respondents said they either strongly agreed or agreed that Te Reo Māori should be a core subject in primary schools.

Children are at the centre of Te Reo Māori revitalisation efforts during Maori Language Week. Source: 1 NEWS

"Te Reo Māori is recognised as a taonga, or treasure, for all New Zealanders," labour market and household statistics senior manager Jason Attewell said.

"‘The GSS survey shows about half of New Zealanders have positive attitudes to Te Reo Māori."

The GSS also asked whether the "Government should encourage and support the use of Māori in everyday situations".

Almost half (49 per cent) of adult New Zealanders said they strongly agreed or agreed with this statement.

About 45 per cent supported the statement "signage should be both in Māori and English".

Everyone at the Ministry for Business Innovation and Employment's Wellington HQ was singing from the same song sheet as part of the ministry's Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori events. Source: 1 NEWS

Thirty-five per cent either strongly agreed or agreed with the statement "it would be good if all people living in New Zealand spoke Māori and English".

Nearly half of New Zealanders had used at least some te reo words or phrases in the previous four weeks.

Support for te reo was strongest among New Zealanders aged 15 - 44 years.

Hīkoia te Kōrero was about celebrating and promoting the Māori language to all New Zealanders. Source: 1 NEWS