Labour’s secret policy for compulorsy Maori language in schools

July 15th, 2014 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

All New Zealand schoolchildren would learn Maori under ’s long-term plan for , but it appears the party is loath to give the policy a high profile.

So is it their policy or isn’t it?

Labour Maori affairs spokeswoman Nanaia Mahuta and education spokesman Chris Hipkins indicated Labour had an “aspirational” target for Maori to be taught in all schools after the Maori Party’s Te Tai Tokerau candidate, Te Hira Paenga, claimed Labour had endorsed his party’s policy for compulsory te reo in schools.

“We are glad to see Labour at last getting the message that our reo is something that we all, as New Zealanders, should embrace,” Mr Paenga said.

Ms Mahuta initially suggested Mr Paenga had the wrong end of the stick, saying Labour would only promote its own policy which was “the recognition that te reo should be a working language for all New Zealanders”.

However, Ms Mahuta was far more direct in a debate held in Gisborne earlier this month when she said: “We’ve made a clear commitment that te reo Maori will be compulsory in our schools.”

Isn’t this typical Labour. They say one thing to one audience, and another thing to another. That quote from Mahuta is crystal clear, but now watch them backtrack as the previously secret policy has been highlighted.

She later said the comment was made in the context of the recognition “that there are some real challenges in our school system to build the capacity of our teaching workforce who are able to teach te reo Maori”. She said te reo for all schoolchildren was “an aspirational goal within our policy platform around te reo Maori and we believe that we need to take some practical steps to be able to build up, for example, the teaching workforce to be able to teach te reo Maori in our schools as a way towards supporting that aspiration”.

Education spokesman Mr Hipkins said Labour “certainly wouldn’t use the phrase compulsory” for its long-term te reo policy.

So Mahuta says to a Maori forum that te reo Maori will be compulsory, while Hipkins says, no it won’t be.

“I would certainly like to make sure all kids have the option and there is availability of te reo maori in all schools. Whether in fact that was compulsory, that’s a discussion for another day.

Translation – that is our policy, but we don’t want people to realise it.

I have no problem with having a debate on the pros and cons of compulsory te reo Maori in schools.  What I do have a problem with is a two-faced party that won’t even be honest about its policies.

Tags: ,

112 Responses to “Labour’s secret policy for compulorsy Maori language in schools”

  1. mandk (998 comments) says:

    This is yet another Labour policy to thrill the electorate.
    The poll on the Herald website is currently running at 81% saying No.

    Mandarin would be far more useful and popular.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 32 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. sooty (64 comments) says:

    Yeah Nah. Idiots.

    Vote: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. Harriet (4,990 comments) says:

    “…..I have no problem with having a debate on the pros and cons of compulsory te reo Maori in schools…..”

    With respect, you pay for it then.

    It’s plainly stupid. There’s as much to say that German, French, Japanese, Latin ect ect should be compulsary long before Maori.

    MP’s are paid to talk about serious matters. Moreso during a bloody election.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 22 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. queenstfarmer (782 comments) says:

    Isn’t this typical Labour. They say one thing to one audience, and another thing to another

    Seriously, this is reaching epidemic proportions now. If any business did what Labour does, they would be liable for misleading and deceptive conduct. Why can’t the same Fair Trading Act rules apply to political parties?

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 30 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. Steve Wrathall (284 comments) says:

    “our reo is something that we all, as New Zealanders, should embrace,” Or else

    Vote: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. sHr0oMaN (26 comments) says:

    Labour – the party of compulsion.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. Manolo (13,840 comments) says:

    Ah, Te Reo, that beautiful language spoken by Greeks and Romans, a true pillar of culture and civilisation!

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. hj (7,033 comments) says:

    All New Zealand schoolchildren would learn Maori under Labour’s long-term plan for te reo, but it appears the party is loath to give the policy a high profile.
    ….
    The Greens do that too: keep the dirty books under the counter.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. smttc (752 comments) says:

    I think we are getting to the point where it is now safe to conclude that Labour want to get elected and implement a set of policies without properly campaigning for votes in support of them.

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. jcuknz (704 comments) says:

    Another good reason not to vote for Labour and the GIMP … a foolish ideological waste of money and teaching time … teaching a language spoken by 3% of 14% of a small country at the bottom of the world … there are similar movements in certain pasifica countries I gather from RNZ.
    You are what you are from what you are, not from what language you speak.

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. smttc (752 comments) says:

    mandk, the Herald poll is now up to 84% No. But it is worry that 14% of respondents think Maori should be compulsory.

    Vote: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. WineOh (630 comments) says:

    Teaching Latin would be more useful than Te Reo. Honestly, outside of the Treaty gravy train and the (albeit growing) Maori Trust asset management how would this benefit our ‘aspirational’ goals of a brighter future for Young Kiwis?

    On a broader topic of foreign languages, my old high school in the US of A had a policy that all students must study 3 years of a foreign language. Didn’t matter whether you chose Spanish, French, German, Mandarin etc (at that time Japanese was the ‘future business language’ of the world) – given how little many Kiwis see of other world cultures I would see this being more useful than Te Reo.

    Vote: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. SPC (5,643 comments) says:

    The Maori Party want it compulsory for all students. Labour’s policy is to have Maori learning available in all schools.

    Many subjects are available in schools without being compulsory.

    Interpretation

    1. an optional subject not a compulsory one.
    2. it is available to the extent that a school can provide it (a nationwide lack of teachers).

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. pejhay (29 comments) says:

    Surely we’d be better off for our future learning Mandarin or Cantonese…

    Is aboriginal compulsory in Australian schools?
    Is native indian compulsory in American schools?
    Is caveman compulsory in South African schools?

    I’m all for promoting Te Reo, but not as compulsory !

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. greenjacket (467 comments) says:

    smttc wrote: “Labour want to get elected and implement a set of policies without properly campaigning for votes in support of them”

    By “policies” I mean an action that has had trade offs identified and weighed, been costed, and thought given to practical implementation issues.
    And in that respect, Labour have no policies at all.
    All Labour have are bumper sticker slogans they say to the audience that wants to hear it.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. Steve Wrathall (284 comments) says:

    It should be “compulorsy” for bloggers to learn English

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. jp_1983 (213 comments) says:

    Maybe we could learn their traditional cultural ways in these lessons too.

    *War crimes and to eat and cook your enemies. – te rauparaha

    *Traditional ways of looking after the environment
    Arrival of Māori

    The ancestors of Māori came to New Zealand around 1250–1300 AD, bringing with them the kiore (Pacific rat) and kurī (dog). Bones found by archaeologists show that Māori first hunted the largest animals – moa, geese, takahē, sea lions and fur seals. Most of the larger birds became extinct within a few hundred years, and Māori ate shellfish, fish, eels and plants instead.

    Kiore also killed many small animals.

    Burning the forest

    Before people arrived, more than 80% of New Zealand was covered in forest. Māori burnt about 40% of the forest within 200 years of arriving – probably to clear space for gardens, tracks and settlements.
    http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/human-effects-on-the-environment

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. Rosa19 (25 comments) says:

    kaiwhakakata!!

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    I don’t care if its Maori, french or Italian, teaching children a second language whilst young is excellent to develop their thinking ability. Any other language, it doesn’t matter which. A child is able to learn a second language a lot easier than an adult, and once they have grasped the ability to do that, any other language becomes easy.

    All for teaching children this skill. It develops so many other leaning practices at the same time.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. Kiwi Dave (92 comments) says:

    Aspirational for some people, maybe; a working language for all NZers – that’s delusional.

    Has anyone in the Labour Party looked at attempts overseas to revive unpopular languages and noticed the results? Ireland has been trying through compulsion for nearly 90 years to make Irish the dominant language and spectacularly failing.

    Incidentally, DPF, or to use your preferred spelling, ‘incidentially’, given this post’s title of ‘compulorsy Maori language’, have you considered using an English language spell-checker for your posts?

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. m@tt (629 comments) says:

    “I’m all for promoting Te Reo, but not as compulsory !”
    I don’t see any evidence that anyone is. No documentation, no one confirming this as a policy and no one providing any evidence that it’s even likely to happen. All there is is a poorly worded statement to a crowd in Gisborne by a single MP. The usual stance of this site* is to favour cock-up over conspiracy.

    You should however continue to get yourselves all worked up over something that is not happening… it’s kinda funny to watch :)

    * What is this website called again? largebrownflightlessnativebirdblog? Musn’t get any Te Reo on it. :)

    Noho ora mai rā, nā M@tt.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. Raphael (88 comments) says:

    pejhay said: “Is caveman compulsory in South African schools?”

    I presume you are referring to the San? No Khoe is not required as it’s not one of South Africa’s 11 official languages.
    However in order to Matriculate you have to pass (pass not just do) two different language subjects (my two were English First Language and Afrikaans Second Language)

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. dime (9,980 comments) says:

    LMAO just what every kid wants to learn, fucking maori!

    I guess they will be able to read the signs whenever they go into a govt building?

    What happens if this comes in and in ten years all the white kids are fluent and the maori kids are umm not as good. will it be whiteys fault? how much money will it take to fix that?

    Vote: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. thor42 (971 comments) says:

    They just don’t have a *clue*.

    This country is filled with people who can’t even use the words “to” and “too” correctly. Why the heck would you want to make them all learn Maori when they can’t even use *English* correctly? Utter stupidity.

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    Why the surprise? Labour is the party of school teachers and educationists, who have been pushing a Green, Maorification agenda for years now.

    The Greens will undoubtedly back compulsory Maori in schools, but it’s not far off being compulsory already.

    Maori language, which will continue receding into a cultural relic like Gaelic in Scotland regardless of what dying Labour and the transitory Green Party push for, is a minor issue compared with some other race issues. These include our race-based electoral system, State hand-outs to Maori for use of the wireless-wave spectrum, and Mafia-type tributes demanded to satisfy taniwha in the path of engineering projects.

    In my view these are more glaring examples of Maorification:

    Is it just or democratic that a South Islander with one-thirty-second of their genes from Ngai Tahu can get extra tertiary funding from the tribe when that money ultimately largely stems from the Government settlement and charity-tax policy? This person may perhaps also get priority entrance to study some subjects as medicine because of their trace of Ngai Tahu blood. (Ngai Tahu has been proudly stating how many of the tribe’s members are going to medical school.)

    Is it right that, because of Ngai Tahu’s charity status, the tribe’s businesses such as Shotover Jet, operate tax free while their rivals pay tax?

    Is it appropriate that in making an important announcement about the Christchurch earthquake (the memorial site), the relevant National Minister (Brownlie) and the city’s (Labour) Mayor are joined in an official triumvirate by the chief of Ngai Tahu, whose members are a minority even among the city’s Maori?

    Finally and sadly, Chris Finlayson, National’s Minister of Treaty Settlements, surely signed the big top-up for Ngai Tahu under the sweetheart settlement that, years earlier, as its lead negotiator-lawyer, he skilfully negotiated for the tribe.

    Is National morally in a position to capitalise on the Labour-Green move to force children to learn Maori?

    Vote: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. Liam Hehir (125 comments) says:

    In terms of language we’re a little bit cursed as native English speakers. Given that our tongue is the language of commerce, finance, science and technology – and is very easy to learrn – it’s a no-brainer for most foreigners to learn it as a second language. Simply put, the comparitive benefit of an Indian learning English and a Kiwi learning Hindi is not equivalent.

    That being so, I sometimes wonder why we don’t give students a good grounding in Latin given that it would at least give students the grounding to master languages like Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese fairly easily – together with a bunch of other romance languages like Romanian, Catalan and so on.

    Amo, Amas, Amat!

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    Liam re your 10.10.

    I dispute that English is easy to learn. Perhaps for a German, Dutch of Scandinavian-language learner. The difficulty of learning English tends to parallel how difficult it is for a native English speaker to learn that learner’s language.

    I agree that Latin is a good grounding, even for learning non-Latin-based languages.

    Getting one’s head around the declensions of say, a Slavic language, are less formidable for someone who has even a modest working idea of Latin. I’m not sure Latin would be any help in learning the tone-based Chinese languages, though.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. infused (656 comments) says:

    Yes, lets send kids to school to learn a useless language.

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. Fletch (6,410 comments) says:

    Labour’s new policy: find a group with a grievance or a group with a bone to grind and change policy to appeal to that group in the hope of getting votes. (see presumption of innocence in rape cases, proving consent in sex, compulsory Te Reo, increased teacher employment, digital devices for all kids, Govt sponsored school fees, subsidizing trains etc).

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. Liam Hehir (125 comments) says:

    Jack5,

    Sounds like you know much more about the matter than I do.

    My understanding, however, was that English is comparitively easy to study because as a language it has no gender, no cases, basic grammar, short words and so on.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. Paulus (2,633 comments) says:

    At least Music cannot be translated into Maori or any other language.
    Music is internationally unique.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. Left Right and Centre (2,986 comments) says:

    Liam – that must be why all the foreigners are so brilliant at it – hahahaha

    . . . has no gender, no cases, basic grammar, short words and so on.

    Your common variety Labour candidate ? hahahaha

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. get a grip (10 comments) says:

    Seems to me that the majority of posters here are monolingual.

    The point that is never referenced, in these emotional outbursts, is that learning a language is more than being able to use words. It requires the person learning to understand the culture behind the language. learn Indonesian and you need to understand their culture which is different to ours, the same for French, Mandarin or any other major language. For goodness sake to understand Americans we really have to understand their culture to understand their interpretation of the English language. Ask any multilingual person to explain it to you:-)

    So on that basis I have no problem with basic Maori being taught in schools whether you like it or not, it is part of our society.
    After all it already is being taught!!!!! My grand daughters proudly tell me how to count in Maori etc and that in Year 1 & 2.
    What is never referenced is all the the other bollocks stuff that kids are taught. I mean what use is Algebra to the average person. Probably about as useful as teaching Latin!!!

    At least learning some Maori might make our kids a bit more tolerant than the raving rednecks here.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 16 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. Liam Hehir (125 comments) says:

    what use is Algebra [sic] to the average person [?]

    I did not enjoy maths from about fifth form on due to the increasingly prominent part “x” came to play in the subject.

    Still, I’m glad I acquired a rudimentary grasp of it since almost every day I mentally calculate driving distance and times, the contents of various containers, the various costs and prices of things and the relative merits of different things I could buy.

    I’m not sure calling people rednecks is a good way to persuade them to your view – assuming that was your intention rather than engaging in self-righteous moral display.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. big bruv (13,935 comments) says:

    “I have no problem with having a debate on the pros and cons of compulsory te reo Maori in schools”

    OK.

    Pros: None

    Cons: An irrelevant language that is no use to anybody. An incredible waste of education time.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    big bruv (13,075 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 11:49 am

    how is it no use to ‘anybody’. For a start, it enables people to have a conversation that you can’t understand. I can see some benefits in that ! :P

    Tumanako e ia ki a koutou i te ra hoki e matenui nei ahuareka !

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    So, we are all “raving rednecks” according to Mr 9 Comments…I actually find that word highly offensive, and look forward to a day when it is an unacceptable as the “N” word…

    “Redneck” means uneducated; bigoted, racist..if not actually stupid.

    I may be many things, but I am neither uneducated nor bigoted nor racist…(Oh please Mr 9 comments…jump into the same hole “Kimbo” did here the other day….)

    Ah Judy…how is it no surprise that you know some token Maori??

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. mikemikemikemike (325 comments) says:

    Why is this so bad? It’s a national language and unique to NZ (In the same way a dialect in China/India) is unique to that region. Do you think Malaysians, Singaporeans, and Italians are encouraged to not learn their national language because there is no money in it?

    Not everything is about the $$ – why can’t we be genuinely proud to be NZ’ers all of it, not just the white colonial part?

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. Unity (588 comments) says:

    I’m all for our children learning a second language when at school but totally against it being stipulated as being the Maori language and compulsory as well. What use would it be for them, not only outside NZ but even inside our country? It is being reinvented all the time and even fluent Maori speakers can’t understand the new words. I would not allow the Maori language to be compulsory for my children and would home school them if there was no other choice.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ David Garrett (6,208 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    Although I sat a compulsory Maori paper years and years ago – my Te Reo skills are not very good, however, my use of online translators is excellent.

    I wasn’t insulting him.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  41. ciaron (1,434 comments) says:

    I mean what use is Algebra to the average person. Probably about as useful as teaching Latin!!!

    In my humble experience, Algebra is only useless to below average people.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  42. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    I don’t give a rat’s rectum what you were saying in this totally irrelevant primitive language…

    Actually, that’s sadly not quite true…I think my children will probably get away without being forced to learn it, but their children probably won’t…and in a generation you won’t be able to get a gummint job of any consequence if you can’t speak the damn thing…Unless we all suddenly wake up, and that seems increasingly unlikely…

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  43. get a grip (10 comments) says:

    David Garret, so you must consider yourself a redneck to take offence.????
    If you reread my post you will see that I say “raving rednecks here” not that all posters are rednecks…

    While I agree with your definition of Redneck, I dont agree that all it should be put in the same category as “the N word” as you so politely put it. and there I was thinking that you did not suffer the PC syndrome of limiting free speech because it might upset someone.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  44. Kovac (29 comments) says:

    A huge amount of money has been spent on trying to bolster the Maori language only for the effort to be largely ineffective. I certainly understand why a culture would try to preserve it’s language, but not every language is going to survive when it’s usefulness is limited.

    Languages die all over the world for that very reason and at some point you have to wonder if burning millions of dollars in an effort to help a language limp along is really worth the cost.

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  45. thor42 (971 comments) says:

    @Liam Hehir – “My understanding, however, was that English is comparitively easy to study because as a language it has no gender, no cases, basic grammar, short words and so on.”

    That’s certainly true.

    It does seem to have a lot of “exceptions to rules” though. For example, the pronunciation of words like “cough”, “rough” and “through”. If the rules were consistent they’d be pronounced something like “coff”, “roff” and “throff”. Then there is “bough” to make things even more confusing…… ;)

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  46. dave_c_ (219 comments) says:

    Its not just the ‘language’ they want us to learn – I get the feeling that they would also want to ram down our throats the ‘Maori way’
    Bollocks to anyone who wants to force me to do something I would rather not do !

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  47. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    Kovac: Well said…I remember from a linguistics course I did at Uni that the accepted wisdom is that “no language is superior or inferior to another”…complete bollocks when you think about it…one language has one word for “warm”…English has about ten of them…(mild, tepid, temperate etc.) I wrote what the examiner clearly wanted but I never really believed it..

    But then I understand the Eskimos (sorry, the Inuit) have about 10 different words for snow of various types…I didn’t realise there were any until I went to Sweden and my girlfriend thought I was an idiot for suggesting we make a snowman when it was the wrong kind of snow…

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  48. Pete George (23,602 comments) says:

    Kids shouldn’t have to learn a language some people on a blog don’t want them to learn, after all, the language has no relevance to many of them.

    Kids shouldn’t have to learn music at school either, especially the sort of music they try and teach them, that has no relevance to many.

    Geography teaches about countries that are not relevant to the kids, that should be outlawed. So should History unless it’s the history that pertains to the kids.

    Reading is much less relevant in a highly visual CGI world.
    Writing is obsolete, a bit of thumbing of approximations for words is all that’s relevant in today’s world.
    Rithmetic is irrelevant now we have calculators and phones that can do it for you.

    Why bother with school? Just let the kids watch whatever channel or website that meets their specific needs.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 8 You need to be logged in to vote
  49. Manolo (13,840 comments) says:

    For once Manolo agrees with a sarcastic P.G. :D

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  50. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    Labour wants to keep hush hush about a number of their policies. Compulsory Maori language would be one. The euthanasia bill will be another.

    Can’t actually go to the electorate with our policies can we? If we win power we will just introduce them with the backing of a supine media to the public after the election.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  51. RightNow (6,994 comments) says:

    Parenting skills, financial literacy and budgeting should be taught as compulsory subjects to all kids.
    Maori language should be no more than optional.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  52. dime (9,980 comments) says:

    “Kids shouldn’t have to learn a language some people on a blog don’t want them to learn”

    lmao ah ok. so we shouldnt discuss anything. might make for a boring comments section. we will all just have to sit on the fence and state the obvious like.. you do.

    81% on the herald site against it. but who cares what they think either.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  53. dime (9,980 comments) says:

    Dime accepts learning another language is good for a kid. Its just the compulsion that worries me.

    How much would this cost to get up and running? Is it just jobs for the bros?

    Also, the teaching “profession” lost my trust years ago with their awful behavior. Therefor I do not trust them to teach maori. I believe it will come with a rewritten history.

    In summary – fuck em!

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  54. big bruv (13,935 comments) says:

    Scott

    Nothing at all wrong with the Euthanasia bill, it is something that would win Labour votes if they were brave enough to announce it as policy.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  55. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    There are benefits to learning another language, and may be there is an argument for making that a compulsory part of the curriculum. I think it unlikely that any government will make te reo compulsory, however. What I can see is a continuation of the current trend to incorporate te reo and tikanga as part of our children’s everyday educational experience. We have already come a long way in this regard.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  56. big bruv (13,935 comments) says:

    I do note that certain racists are suggesting that they want Maori to be compulsory because they are offended at the way a large percentage of white motherfucker New Zealanders pronounce Maori words and place names.

    Might I suggest that if it does become law that all kids are forced to learn Maori that we might also make it compulsory for all kids to be taught to speak English in the correct manner.

    I might be more interested in learning their language, or showing that language some respect if they were to do the same with English.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  57. william blake (109 comments) says:

    ae ra, kahore he rite te tautoko matua a Hone Key mo Colin Craig

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  58. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    big bruv- but they won’t will they? That’s the problem in NZ, we elect governments and then they do what they want. If euthanasia was Labour party policy would it help them? I can imagine something like- Vote Labour –
    – compulsory Maori language for all school children
    – termination of all unwanted grandparents

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  59. Kiwi Dave (92 comments) says:

    4mikes@ 12.09
    “It’s a national language and unique to New Zealand…”

    Except that the vast majority of the nation doesn’t speak it. What do you mean ‘national’?
    Unique – yes, if we pretend that the Cook Islands don’t exist – but so what?

    That something is unique and part of a nation tells us nothing at all as to whether it should be part of each individual, or more valuable to the individual/nation than whatever will be dropped from the curriculum to make time for compulsory Maori instruction.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  60. hj (7,033 comments) says:

    william blake (105 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    ae ra, kahore he rite te tautoko matua a Hone Key mo Colin Craig
    ….
    means i can speak Maori you can’t, and I’m hoping it suggests (by the fallacy of composition) it is smart to learn Maori?
    Alternative translation:
    It’ll grease your career path in the public service?

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  61. hj (7,033 comments) says:

    mikenmild (10,475 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 1:31 pm

    There are benefits to learning another language

    yes there are if only if it teaches how to speak English to a non ENGLISH SPEAKER>
    The problem with Maori is the Great Charm Offensive going back over several decades (a cause celebre of the left).

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  62. Elaycee (4,393 comments) says:

    We’ve made a clear commitment that te reo Maori will be compulsory in our schools.”

    What a complete WOFTAM. The priority should be teaching kids how to read, write and do basic math. And after that, teaching skills that will help them become adults in the real world. Skills that can help them get a job and become productive members of society.

    What’s Labour’s next brain fart? Compulsory teaching of sign language?

    Pffttt……

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  63. MT_Tinman (3,205 comments) says:

    Elaycee (4,271 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    What’s Labour’s next brain fart? Compulsory teaching of sign language?

    For christs sake stop putting ideas into their heads.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  64. william blake (109 comments) says:

    hj (6,279 comments) says:
    July 15th, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    ‘means i can speak Maori you can’t,’

    too right, but at least I tried. Your translation was nearly there about greasing careers in public service but concerning
    key and Craig.

    Shame Maori language was actively discouraged when I was at school (dont try to speak that language or you might get a punch in the head from some offended Maori) or my grammar might be better.

    As for Maori speaking ‘betterer enlish’, many Maori are bi or poly lingual like most of the better educated first worlders.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  65. Fisiani (1,040 comments) says:

    Compulsory te reo Maori in all schools
    All sex deemed to be rape unless consent can be proven
    Millions of dollars of wind blown timber to be allowed to rot.
    A leader ashamed to be man.
    Taking and extra $5,000,000,000 in CGT every year from Kiwis who have a business, a bach a boat or a Kiwisaver account.
    Shearer advocating for oil exploration but overruled by the Greens.
    Winston First wanting to build an expensive railway line from Napier to Gisborne for 100 people a day.
    A ban on a court ordered extradition of a fat German in February.

    This election result is so close. National needs every vote possible. If you love and value your country then PARTY VOTE NATIONAL

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  66. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    Fisiani: Pretty good…except that even 100 people a day haven’t used the Napier-Gisborne railway line for 25 years or more…1000 logs a day maybe…

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  67. RightNow (6,994 comments) says:

    What’s Labour’s next brain fart? Compulsory teaching of sign language?

    For christs sake stop putting ideas into their heads.

    Normally I’d think you were joking, but this is Labour we’re talking about. Maybe they are getting their policy ideas from blog comments.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  68. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    Stone age language, stone age bird – bring back the spear – job done.

    Harre isn’t the only one pinching melons policy.

    Is there any suggestion that learned scholars of Te Reo will be updating and expanding the vocabulary to bring it out of the stone age and into the 21st century in order to make it our “working language”? Just adding “te” in front of commonly used scientific, commercial, and legal nomenclature and terminology seems a little down market and wouldn’t result in any discernible change in our working language at all. It would also raise the prospect that those with whom we deal internationally might form the view that we were a country burdened with a nation-wide speech impediment.

    Nanaia must be proud that after hibernating in parliament for nigh on 20 years she has popped up and delivered this barn-storming policy.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  69. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    DVM: You are obviously unaware of the vital work of the Maori Language Commission…a taxpayer funded body (now there’s a surprise) which, inter alia, makes up new words In “Maori” for things the stone age language cant describe..like computers and mobile phones…even diseases.

    The “Maori” term for cervical cancer translates as: ” a growth on the mouth of the mother of humankind”…my rellies in Tonga just Tonganise such words…Komputa for example…but then they don’t have taxpayers moneys to waste on such bullshit…

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  70. Pete George (23,602 comments) says:

    @GeoffMillerNZ

    Chris Hipkins furiously backtracking on #Labour2014 Maori language policy in interview with @Garner_Live

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  71. Unity (588 comments) says:

    Actually – and I feel I’m going to be cried down here – learning sign language wouldn’t be such a bad thing, given the huge number of hearing impaired people in this country. However, perhaps learning it at school wouldn’t be acceptable but it would be very helpful if more people used it – of that I’m very sure as I have quite a number of severely hearing impaired around me. At least it would be more beneficial than learning the Maori language which would be of no use at all. With so many using plugs in their ears to hear music etc, there will be even more hearing impaired people in the future.

    As someone above said, what subjects would they drop to teach this useless language? Anyone who wants to learn it should so so privately or learn it in the home. I would rather see parenting and budgeting courses taught at school and how to relate to your children which many seem to have no idea about.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  72. Unity (588 comments) says:

    Pete George, they’ve obviously quickly caught on to how unpopular it is. Perhaps they are accessing this or other blogs!!??

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  73. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    A fair amount of te reo is already taught at most primary schools. Sign language too. Doesn’t seem to hurt the kids to be exposed to it.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8 You need to be logged in to vote
  74. Pete George (23,602 comments) says:

    Hipkins on RadioLive:
    http://www.radiolive.co.nz/Labours-policy-on-Te-Reo-in-schools/tabid/506/articleID/49970/Default.aspx

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  75. BlairM (2,341 comments) says:

    Well this looks like another nail in the coffin for the Labour Party….

    The word “redneck” is an interesting one. It has no racial connotations here in Texas. It’s the equivalent of calling someone a bogan. Rednecks love guns, beer, pickups, dogs and country music, but it has nothing to do with how they feel about black or hispanic people. Nobody makes that connection. Some rednecks are racist, but it’s rare to meet racists in Texas – it’s too diverse and cosmopolitian here. However, places like Louisiana and Alabama? Most white people I’ve met from the Deep South talk like they live in the 19th Century. It’s embarassing.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  76. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    Doesn’t seem to hurt the kids to be exposed to it.

    milky

    You might find a few employers and tertiary lecturers preferring more exposure to English and fundamental arithmetic/mathmatics skills. Learning a stone age language won’t help anyone do well at a job interview, successfully transact an international capital transaction, or pass a degree in engineering.

    This language has no relevance in a modern society. It is gob-smacking that, as DG has stated, taxpayers are funding the invention of new words for a language that is an anchronism in the 21st century because of the limitation of its vocabulary to the usage of a stone age society.

    Anyone wanting to learn Te Reo can do so. Making it compulsory is nothing more than a patronising sop to an ethnic group that should be putting it’s efforts into rather more fundamental social aspirations such as not killing children and becoming far less prominent in crime and unemployment statistics.

    That is not to say that the language isn’t worth preserving or that it has no place or is not relevant to 15% of our population. But the prominence it has received in the last few years, fostered by central governments, has done absolutely nothing to arrest the real social issues in Maoridom. If anything, pandering to the language in this way is counter-productive by merely providing another convenient distraction from the real issues confronting Maori.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  77. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    Komputa

    Tongan spelling DG?? It might have been originally, but I think nowadays that spelling is pretty well general usage.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  78. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    ….”, has done absolutely nothing to arrest the real social issues in Maoridom. “….

    It never will & it was never intended to do so by those pushing the crap. The MP represents the Maori elite. It is not urban based & has little regard for the actions or well being of the youth of Porirua or South Auckland.

    Those pushing for Maorification of language, culture & place names are seldom seen in such squalid places. Rather their natural habitat is rural marae where they venture forth to remove Taniwha & perform Tapu liftings for vast amounts of Koha. This subset of Maoridom wear huge pieces of cattle bone around their necks & milk political correctness without mercy.

    Usually grossly overweight these lumbering relics of another age have nearly lost the ability to walk & travel mainly by BMW.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  79. David Garrett (7,318 comments) says:

    DVM: No, they pretty much write them as they say them…the one I always liked most was misini saliote…”chariot machine” for car…

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  80. Longknives (4,767 comments) says:

    All New Zealand Schoolchildren are already being forced to learn Maori. Ask anyone with Primary School-Aged children….

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  81. adze (2,126 comments) says:

    Learning a second language (any language) has useful cognitive benefits.

    Even if people are bothered by the compulsion aspect (which won’t happen for a long time anyway – there’s simply not enough teachers), I’m glad I took some Maori in high school, even if it didn’t teach me a lot about the culture at the time. I’ve probably used it more than algebra :) (even though maths is the language of the universe).

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  82. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    Learning a second language (any language) has useful cognitive benefits.

    Spot on.

    Even if people are bothered by the compulsion aspect (which won’t happen for a long time anyway – there’s simply not enough teachers), I’m glad I took some Maori in high school, even if it didn’t teach me a lot about the culture at the time. I’ve probably used it more than algebra :) (even though maths is the language of the universe).

    Exactly. Good post.

    It seems that this post is being frequented by a bunch of people who haven’t ever actually studied a language, and some who seem to form an opinion of others for doing so, depending on their choices.

    David Garrett, I suppose, if I told you I studied Latin at that famous non-profit Eton, you’d be in awe but if I broke out in Te Reo you’d call me a primate. To me it’s all equally valid.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  83. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    Learning a stone age language won’t help anyone do well at a job interview, successfully transact an international capital transaction, or pass a degree in engineering.

    This language has no relevance in a modern society

    You kind of gave the game away with the “stone age language” bit. One can kind of stop reading after that. You’ve clearly already composed your position based on the particular language in question before you even stopped to think about whether learning any sort of language would be good for your intellectual development. Think of learning a language (Maori, French, English, Latin) as akin to doing Sudoku (look a foreign word) or the crossword in the morning – refreshing and keeping your mind sharp, helping you to understand other people and the world around you. Not just whether it will earn you a bob or two.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  84. wreck1080 (3,924 comments) says:

    I don’t see the point in learning maori.

    I’d rather my children learn spanish or chinese.

    The only reason I could see to learn maori is if one plans to insert one self into the treaty gravy train movement.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  85. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    I don’t see the point in learning maori.

    I’d rather my children learn spanish or chinese.

    I think it’s a short term versus long term thinking thing. Learn any language, take the benefits of understanding another way of thinking. Learn Chinese because it’s Chinese? Well, who knows, by the time they’ve left the nest Romania might be the Leader of The Free World for all you know. But at least they’ve been encouraged to free think, analyse, and see things from other people’s point of views by learning *a* language.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  86. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    itstricky

    Let’s just be perfectly clear here. It is a stone age language. In terms of its inherent utility, its usefulness expired with the arrival of the European. I’m not having a downer on the language per se.

    One can kind of stop reading after that.

    Got it. You’ve never run a business, had to deal with customers or respond to commercial competition. You live in fairyland where someone else pays the bills.

    If you want to learn it for your own intellectual stimulation, or because you wish to broaden your horizons, or because of some ethnic driver, by all means do so.

    I’m simply saying that it will do nothing to enable people who struggle with English (the language of commerce and science) and arithmetic to make their way in this world. ie put food on the table and a roof over heads.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  87. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    Let’s just be perfectly clear here. It is a stone age language. In terms of its inherent utility…

    And so is Latin, for example. But did you know Latin is compulsory for some kids at Auckland Grammar as a challenge for the “bright minds”. Exactly my point. Thanks gump for that info, from the other thread.

    Got it. You’ve never run a business, had to deal with customers or respond to commercial competition. You live in fairyland where someone else pays the bills.

    Hillarious. If only you knew. Incidentally, I once answered the my home phone with “Kia Ora”, because, well, it’s my home phone and free to do as I please. I was consequently berated by a prospective employer who said exactly the words you just did “Got it. You’ve never run a business, you’ll never get a *real* job answering the phone like that”. I knew instantaneously that sort of intolerance was a sign that that employer was the last in the world I would ever work for. He offered me the job. I turned it down. He pleaded. I turned it down. Have never regretted that decision.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  88. Ware Armitage (1 comment) says:

    Looking at the headline, maybe some English language spelling would be more appropriate

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  89. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Latin is not a stone age language. It’s native speakers could read and write in their own language without any outside help, for starters.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  90. TM (99 comments) says:

    I support Maori being compulsory at primary school. It is a relatively simple language, and helps lay some foundation for other languages which can be picked up later in primary or secondary school.

    If most of Asia and Europe can learn multiple languages, NZ better start catching up. Unless all those who advocate we remain monolinguistic are just saying NZ kids are too stupid to learn, and that’s a whole different problem.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  91. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    itstricky

    Well done you for being able to turn down that job. When you’ve finished preening yourself, spare a thought for the lost generations who wouldn’t be in that position because unlike you, they were forced to learn a stone age language instead of skills that would put them in the position of not only being able to turn down a job, but actually get one.

    Bench-marking Te Reo with Latin is simply farcical. Latin is not only a cornerstone of modern European languages, but for something like 1500 years it was as important in European communication as the telephone and the internet are today. It was the language that facilitated the exchange of social, religious and scientific ideas and was a common language of commerce (albeit generally restricted to those of so-called high birth and priesthood). It was the universal European language of the educated.

    Latin also enjoyed the advantage of being written. It was not until the Europeans arrived with an alphabet, a pencil and some paper, that Te Reo was capable of being rendered into a written form but even at that time, the vocabulary was trapped in a time warp of c. 1000 AD. Even had Maori wished to disseminate the recipe for Roast Loin of Ngati Whatua, they would have had to travel overseas to do so personally. After learning Latin.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  92. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    TM

    Logic fail there. Learning Te Reo won’t advance global trade and work opportunities. Chinese, Japanese, English, French and Spanish will.

    As for providing a “foundation”; what’s wrong with the real thing – learning something useful?

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  93. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    Even had Maori wished to disseminate the recipe for Roast Loin of Ngati Whatua

    It’s not really even worth debating with you, having statements like that. You may as well just jump out of the closet like Manolo and scream “I hate the stone agers”, lest we get our signals crossed about exactly what you’re saying here…

    Bench-marking Te Reo with Latin is simply farcical. Latin is not only a cornerstone of modern European languages, but for something like 1500 years it was as important in European communication as the telephone and the internet are today.

    And who uses it today? Doctors? Physios? Anyone else? Does anyone use it in every day conversation? So really, it’s more dead than Maori is. No point being all nostalgic about 1500 years ago. However, I don’t knock anyone who wants to learn it – like I said – learning a language is a fantastic all-round skill to have.

    spare a thought for the lost generations who wouldn’t be in that position because unlike you, they were forced to learn a stone age language instead of skills

    Sorry, who are you talking about?

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  94. thedavincimode (6,803 comments) says:

    itsricky

    Regrettably, your pre-occupation with this stone age language has lead you to overlook fundamental English comprehension skills.

    If you want to debate, then debate the point I’m making which in essence is that having regard to other more pressing educational skills, learning Te Reo is fundamentally pointless. About as useful as colour therapy, aromatherapy or nasal inhalation therapy.

    If, on the other hand, you want to learn it in your own time out of interest, or due to ethnic identification or to assuage white man’s guilt syndrome or whatever, be my guest. Just don’t punish the children of this country by forcing them to spend valuable learning time that should be afforded far greater priorities.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  95. itstricky (1,852 comments) says:

    Yep, just like Latin. But why not learn about the people of your own country?

    In all, what I’m comprehending in your posts is “stone agers”, ” cannibalism” and “white man guilt”. so I get the picture you’re trying to paint and it’s not like I haven’t heard it before one hundred times. I leave you with your prejudices.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 8 You need to be logged in to vote
  96. Odakyu-sen (679 comments) says:

    To abuse a quote from Star Wars:

    “The more you tighten your Te Reo grip, the more language systems will slip through your fingers…”

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  97. Liam Hehir (125 comments) says:

    And who uses it today? Doctors? Physios? Anyone else? Does anyone use it in every day conversation?

    If you have proficiency in Latin then it is likely that you will be able to master French, Italian and Spanish much more easily. Indeed, you will probably be able to pass exams at the high school level in those langauges without the need to study them directly.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  98. Unity (588 comments) says:

    If my children were to learn another language I would have no objection if it was one that could be used elsewhere but wasting their time on the Maori language would be of absolutely no use to them whatsoever. I’m of Scottish descent and I accept that Gaelic would be of no use in the real World so if they wanted to learn it, it would have to be privately. I wouldn’t expect if to be compulsory for others.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  99. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    TM (9.09 post) seems to be building an argument that the choice is for NZ to be monolingual or to learn Maori. That of course, is rubbish.

    No matter which second language people learn, if their interest is triggered they may well be stimulated to learn a third or more languages, and that has to be good for a tiny, remote, trading country.

    I am not advocating compulsory Latin, but you could similarly argue that compulsory basic Latin would stimulate people also to learn Maori, with the added benefit of gaining a vocabulary booster for your English.

    The problem about compulsion, whether it is in learning Maori or Latin or any second language, is that this likely turns off interest in language learning for most pupils and adults. It becomes grind rather than an interesting path.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  100. masterman (19 comments) says:

    Learning other languages is vital for all children and if Maori is the first “other” language introduced at primary school, it will make learning foreign languages easier. Learning and appreciating other languages and cultures enriches us as human beings and and helps dispel the “fear” of difference. Languages need to be introduced at primary level as our capacity for language learning decreases once we reach puberty (probably also why so many Kiwis, the PM included, mangle English). Maori as the indigenous first language of this country should proudly be an integral part of every Kiwi kid’s primary school experience, then the addition of a European and an Asian language. The learning of foreign languages will also instill a greater appreciation of the individual’s first tongue (and that’s not necessarily English in our multi-cultural nation)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  101. Unity (588 comments) says:

    Masterman, Maori are not indigenous and there were always people here before them, according to David Rankin the Nga Puhi Elder and others. The stories that were passed down through the generations always said this. We all came here in boats from elsewhere. If our children are to learn any language it should be one that could be useful elsewhere and that would encourage them to possible learn even more. The Maori language would not do this. Also ‘Maori’ is a name they were given but all the tribes came from different places – they are not actually one race of people but different tribes from elsewhere. Their language was written down by English speaking people in the English alphabet. They didn’t even have a written language.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  102. mikenmild (11,247 comments) says:

    ‘Maori are not indigenous and there were always people here before them’
    Always entertaining to read that piece of bullshit again.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  103. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    Masterman repeats the mistake with this in his 12.11 post:

    if Maori is the first “other” language introduced at primary school, it will make learning foreign languages easier

    Easier than what? If Masterman is suggesting learning Maori rather than any other language as the first second language taught, and compulsorily at primary school, it will make learning other languages easier, he is talking rubbish.

    I don’t advocate learning Latin compulsorily, but for example this would make learning easier in languages fairly closely related to English including French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian with a total of about 850 million speakers. Maori’s closely related languages in the Pacific Islands would have only about a million speakers in total at most.

    Latin would likely also be of some help to an English speaker in learning other Indo-european languages which must include tongues with about a billion native speakers. Maori, in comparison, is probably similarly distantly related to Malaya Indonesia which have perhaps 200 million Malay first-language speakers. (Indonesia has about 700 languages).

    Latin would have another edge, however, because of its benefit in widening a person’s English vocabulary,

    Or Chinese: giving children the opportunity to learn Mandarin would open the door to their learning a language with nearly a billion speakers.

    But my point is compulsory teaching of a language for cultural reasons won’t work. In the case of compulsory Maori, it will generate resentment and be quite counter-productive for Maori.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  104. Unity (588 comments) says:

    I agree with you, Jack5. Actually I think because we have had things Maori shoved down our throats at every turn for some time now, many of us are all Maori-ied out and the damage is already done as far as us thinking rationally. However when I put my rational hat on, you are so right, Jack5. Learning Maori would be of no use whatsoever but I can think of how helpful one of the other languages would be and learning another language should be encouraged.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  105. masterman (19 comments) says:

    Jack 5, my point is that language learning needs to begin early if at all, the advantage of Maori is that it is one of the languages of this country, many of our geographical places are Maori, many organisations have Maori names as well as English, lots of our children and our rugby heroes have Maori names so all of our children have exposure to Maori, it makes sense for them to understand what those words mean.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  106. adze (2,126 comments) says:

    the advantage of Maori is that it is one of the languages of this country, many of our geographical places are Maori

    That’s actually the reason I took Maori in high school. But it turns out it’s not that simple – place names are often shorter than the original, and you still really need to know the context to make sense of the translation.

    But although it’s clearly not a popular notion here, it’s still a useful language to learn, especially in this country.
    One thing that many people may be unaware of is that migratory footprints are noticeable in language. I constantly notice similarities between various Maori words and equivalent words in languages across the Pacific – even in South East Asian languages such as Malay or Tagalog.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  107. adc (595 comments) says:

    One of the key benefits of learning another language is how it extends your brain. For this benefit, it really doesn’t matter which language it is, or whether the language is “useful”.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  108. Unity (588 comments) says:

    Granted adc, but if you are going to learn one, surely it would make so much more sense to learn one that was going to be useful in the big wide world and not something which would be of no use at all – apart from extending your brain.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  109. doggone7 (808 comments) says:

    Beware secret political education agendas? Like charter schools?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  110. Johnboy (16,722 comments) says:

    Phew Bro’s cant wait till Cunner’s get’s in so I can learn to spell “Murri” popperly! :)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  111. doggone7 (808 comments) says:

    Take this to a high school english class to discuss:

    “So Mahuta says to a Maori forum that te reo Maori will be compulsory, while Hipkins says, no it won’t be.
    Translation – that is our policy, but we don’t want people to realise it.
    I have no problem with having a debate on the pros and cons of compulsory te reo Maori in schools. What I do have a problem with is a two-faced party that won’t even be honest about its policies.”

    I wonder if any 14 year old would say the last sentence is puzzling in that the author has a problem with someone being two-faced and not being honest then makes an obvious non-sequitur, dishonest conclusion. (Mahuta says one thing, Hipkins says another and the author gives a “translation” that is at very best a guess but seemingly a blatant lie to convey a political meaning for political motives.)

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  112. Johnboy (16,722 comments) says:

    Cheating Maori’s, lying Honkie’s doggone7.

    Nothings changed since 1840! :)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote