A new report by the Education Review Office (ERO), called Te Tamata Huaroa, has found there is a strong desire in schools to revitalise te reo Māori through education.
The agency spoke with teachers and school leaders in 102 primary and secondary schools.
The majority of schools it spoke to have a positive view of teaching te reo in classrooms and felt an ethical responsibility to the language, some going as far as to include it in their strategic goals.
A focus on complex learning such as grammatical forms, speaking, reading and writing were less common in classrooms, and te reo Māori was more often taught through simpler forms such as waiata or karakia.
The biggest barriers for teachers was a lack of te reo Māori knowledge and expertise in general regarding second language learning.
ERO deputy chief executive evaluation and review Māori Lynda Pura-Watson said she felt strongly that this work would have real world meaning for New Zealand education.
"This is an exciting exploration of the landscape of te reo Māori teaching on a real practical level but also puts education firmly in the centre of wider revitalisation of the language and the long-term goals of the government."
She said ERO wanted to use the report as a springboard.
"We can take the findings from this report and others in the pipe line and use them to start real conversations about further development and improvement."