Māori Television increases language revitalisation focus

From July 1 2012, Māori Television will strengthen its language revitalisation focus with the introduction of daily language programming from 10.00am – 3.00pm.

In a move that is supported by key stakeholder partners, the following changes will occur to the daily programming schedule on Māori Television:

• 10.00am to 3.00pm – Māori language tuition programming.
• 3.00pm to 11.30pm – Regular Māori Television programming.

The new five hour block of Māori language tuition programming from 10.00am to 3.00pm is designed to provide extensive resources for viewers to upskill and develop their reo proficiency in their own time, at their own place and pace. It will consist of tuition programmes at the entry (Tōku Reo), intermediate (Kōrero Mai) and advanced (Ako) levels.

Chair of Māori Television, Hon Georgina te Heuheu says: “It is crucial that we constantly adapt to ensure we continue to make a significant contribution to the revitalisation of the Māori language and culture.”

From 3.00pm to 11.30pm, regular Māori Television programming resumes with a new standard of at least 51 per cent Māori language content across the entire schedule. This change reflects the need for greater accessibility to Māori Television for all New Zealanders, including those Māori language learners and non-fluent speakers, whilst continuing to meet statutory broadcast requirements.

It is envisaged that viewers with stronger reo skills will also become regular watchers of the 100 per cent full immersion Te Reo channel, which will also benefit from extended broadcast hours of 4.30pm – 11.30pm daily as of July 1 2012.

Māori Television chief executive Jim Mather says: “We remain committed to ensuring that this statutory commitment is being completely fulfilled. The overarching rationale behind these changes is to ensure that we achieve our mission of being a ‘world-class indigenous broadcaster’ through audience growth, providing viewers with additional resources to improve their Māori language proficiency, and further enhancement of the quality of our regular programming.”