Birthday for Te reo Māori language

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The Te Reo Māori language celebrates its 35th birthday today.

Te Reo Māori became an official language of Aotearoa New Zealand on this day 35 years ago.

The Māori Language Act came into action on August 1, 1987, and granted te reo status as an official language of New Zealand

New Zealand now has a goal of at least 1 million fluent speakers by 2040 to ensure the language’s survival. This is one of the goals of the Maihi Karauna which was launched in 2019.

Check out some of the progress New Zealand has made in the last 35 years.

  • Almost 1 in 4 Māori New Zealanders now speak te reo as a first language, while 34 per cent of Māori New Zealanders can speak te reo fairly well.
  • Young New Zealanders are leading the way in te reo proficiency, with around 40 per cent of those aged 15-34 able to speak more than a few words or phrases.
  • 3 in 5 New Zealanders think te reo should be a core subject in primary schools.
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