Te reo ring­tone got au­di­ence talk­ing

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By ADEN MILES

Toko­roa High School has been recog­nised for its on­go­ing com­mit­ment to raise aware­ness of Maori lan­guage use.

Toko­roa High School dean of Te Rito, Keinan Ngapo said the school is a fi­nal­ist in the Raukawa Reo Awards and the na­tional Huia Te Reo Awards.

‘‘We made it as a fi­nal­ist in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor long term and the Maori Lan­guage Week cat­e­gory (Raukawa Reo awards),’’ he said.

‘‘Last year we didn’t even make it into the na­tion­als. This year I sub­mit­ted an en­try for the Huia Te Reo Awards and we have been named a fi­nal­ist in the Long Term Ed­u­ca­tion cat­e­gory.’’

Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori ( The Maori Lan­guage Com­mis­sion) will host Huia Te Reo, the or­gan­i­sa­tion’s an­nual lan­guage con­fer­ence at the Ro­torua En­ergy Events Cen­tre next month.

Huia Te Reo is an an­nual lan­guage event that aims to dis­cuss, show­case and cel­e­brate Maori lan­guage in­no­va­tion and suc­cess na­tion­wide.

Mr Ngapo said he was over­whelmed with the news.

‘ ‘ You needed to give pho­to­graphic ev­i­dence. We sub­mit­ted a DVD; you had to have some­thing that was in­no­va­tive and cap­tured the au­di­ence’s at­ten­tion so we did a Maori ring­tone,’’ he said.

‘‘You needed to show that your en­try would be tar­geted to­wards the com­mu­nity and that it had long-term ap­pli­ca­tion.

‘‘We had pho­tos, I did a re­search pro­posal about the re­ten­tion of Maori speak­ers in the ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem. We also took our whole kau­papa out­side the Toko­roa area, to var­i­ous towns to pro­mote the Maori lan­guage.’’

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