A number of authorities on Māori language gathered in Wellington yesterday to talk about developing two Labour-led Māori education initiatives.

Increasing Māori language proficiency amongst secondary school teachers and nurturing the next generation of Māori leaders were the two kaupapa on the agenda.

They were called together by the Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis who said the goal is to make the two kaupapa achievable.

"Hei whakatūtuki tika ai ēnei kaupapa e rua - Te Ahu o Te Reo me Te Kawa o Matakura hei hāpai i te reo Māori kei roto i ngā kura hei whakarārangatia te reo Māori kei roto i ngā kura katoa, ā me Te Kawa a Matakura. Me pēhea mātou e whakatū ēnei momo kura mō ngā tino tohunga tauira."

One of the language exponents at the hui, Sir Tīmoti Kāretu, asks where will the human resource come from to give the language education strategy man power.

"Ki a au nei, ko te wero matua, ko whakapātaritari matua ko ngā kaiwhakaako - kei hea ngā kaiwhakaako? Kei te ahatia te āhua ki ngā kaiwhakaako? Kei te kimihia mai rānei, kei te ahatia mai rānei, ēngari ki te kore ērā kāore e tūtuki ngā kaupapa e rua nei."

Māori Television Board Representative Kingi Kiriona says teachers need real support.

"Nā te mea ko rātou kei mua i te aroaro o ngā tamariki, nē? Māmā noa iho te kōrero me pēnei me pērā ēngari i te mutunga iho kei runga i te pae o ngā kaiako nō reira ko te kimi tautoko mā ngā kaiako e ora ai i ngā kaiako i roto i ō mātou wawata i ō tātou tūmanako mō rātou, āe mō tō tātou reo."

Dr Ruakere Hond also has some ideas for this initiative to succeed.

"Nō reira ko tēnei mea te āta noho ki roto i te ao Māori koia rā tāku aronga, nei ka pērā te whainga, nei ka pērā te tauira hangaia i te rangi nei ka koa rawa atu au. I te mea ko tēnei mea te ako i te reo - āe, ēngari ko te whakatinana i te reo i roto i tō tātou ao - koia rā kē te tino whainga mutunga nei."

Davis also adds that this won't be an easy job.

"Ehara tēnei i te mahi māmā noa iho, ēngari he timatanga. Ko tō mātou whainga kia whai kaha ngā kaiako katoa kia tuituia te reo Māori ki roto i ngā karaehe mai i te tau 2025."

It's all about ensuring that the Māori leaders of tomorrow are confident speaking Māori.

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