More than half of New Zealanders want te reo Māori to be a core subject in primary schools, according to statistics released by Stats NZ.
Data about attitudes to the Māori language was collected for the first time in New Zealand's biggest survey of well-being - the General Social Survey 2016.
Fifty-three percent of New Zealanders in the survey strongly agreed or agreed Māori should be a core subject in primary schools.
The 2016 GSS also recorded people's ability to use te reo Māori in day-to-day conversations.
Stats NZ senior manager Jason Attewell said only six in 100 New Zealanders said they could speak te reo Māori very well, well, or fairly well.
More than a third of those surveyed said it would be a good idea if all New Zealanders spoke both languages.
The survey showed support for te reo was strongest among New Zealanders aged 15-44 years.
Those aged over 65 were the least likely to support these statements.