Government refuses to back Green Party's push for Te Reo Māori in schools

The Government is refusing to back a major priority for the Green Party: compulsory te reo Māori in schools.

While Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will commit to making the language "universally available", that's not enough for the confidence and supply partner - and they're gearing up for a fight.

The sign language interpreter next to Ms Ardern during her weekly post-Cabinet news conference will now be a permanent fixture.

It was a project of Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson, and with one language war won, she's now onto the next - convincing Labour to adopt its policy of compulsory te reo Māori in schools.

Ms Ardern is open to the idea of promoting the language through its use in Parliament, but she's not committing to the Greens priority of compulsion in schools.

Parents and students in Christchurch told Newshub they were all for the idea.

But there is a potential roadblock ahead in Winston Peters, who has been very vocal about the use of Te Reo even in Parliament.

Last year, he said Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell was "hiding behind the Māori Language" by answering a question in Te Reo. 

And with no reference to compulsory Te Reo in the Confidence and Supply agreement the party signed with the Greens, Labour won't commit to it.

For Marama Davidson, this is the perfect policy to get some traction as new co-leader for the Greens - and something she has pegged as a personal priority.

However introducing sign language to post cab is one thing, but pulling it off with New Zealand First in Government is quite another - and would be a massive win.

Newshub.

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