Te reo Māori had a "natural place" in education and making it compulsory in schools would help build culture and a better understanding of the language, Rotorua principals say.
But school leaders feared there were not enough teachers qualified to teach te reo in schools.
More than 1000 comments were left on an article regarding Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon's call for compulsory te reo Māori classes.
Some comments included "not my language, not my culture, not interested", "absolutely terrific idea, about time" and "let children choose".
John Paul College principal Patrick Walsh's response to the view that it should be a choice to learn the language was "that has limited merit".
"You don't say the same thing about maths or science ... the reality is if you're living in a country that is biculturally committed to the Treaty, which is part of our constitutional document, then I don't think that argument holds a lot of sway.
"My only concern is the lack of qualified te reo teachers, because we've struggled as I know a lot of other schools have.
"Seems to me the Government needs to incentivise more, particularly Māori, entering teaching."
Walsh said making te reo Māori compulsory for Year 7 and 8 pupils had built understanding and the college planned to make te reo Māori compulsory for Year 9 students next year.
"Once you learn the language you also pick up the tikanga, the history, you just become more bicultural."
Lynmore Primary School principal Hinei Taute said nine of its teachers were in a te reo Māori course teaching how to use it in lessons.
Taute said te reo Māori had a natural place in education.
"We need to honour what's in our New Zealand curriculum."
While the school did not have bilingual classes it was increasing the use of te reo Māori in the classroom.
"I do believe if we do a good job at it across all of our classes ... it helps build culture within schools so everyone values a sense of belonging."
With her knowledge from iwi and hapu engagement, as well as being Māori herself, Taute said she could definitely be the person to help Lynmore School progress.
Rotorua Boys' High School principal Chris Grinter said he believed in normalising te reo Māori.
"Rather than 'compulsory' in this time of compulsion and mandates, which can cause some issues, the term 'core subject' would be more fitting because essentially reo Māori would become part of the 'usual' way that a school operates."
Te reo Māori is a core subject for Years 9, 10, and 11 students at the high school, just like English and math, "with that, we support the move to having reo taught in schools".
While Grinter said its school was "spoilt", finding te reo Māori teachers was where other schools may find difficulty.
"We have an entire Māori faculty who are fluent in reo ... we have been able to successfully incorporate kaupapa, tikanga and kawa with Reo Māori at the heart of it all, into the 'normal' of our school."
Labour MP Tamati Coffey said he has heard many answers as to whether it should be a choice to learn te reo Māori at school.
"I've even heard it from our kaumātua that say that actually English was forced on them and the memory of that forced nature of language learning still has repercussions today.
"However, I think if we want to build towards a bicultural foundation of a nation ... I absolutely think that it's something that we should be committing to."
Coffey's husband Tim Smith taught at King's College where it was compulsory to learn te reo Māori, creating "grounded" kids who used the language in everyday conversation.
Coffey said te reo Māori was so normalised at King's College, "it's like talking about maths, it's just something that everybody did".
The Government has committed to achieving 1 million New Zealanders conversationally speaking te reo Māori by 2040, he said.
"We're moving into a space where we can be a bilingual country."
He said the lack of te reo Māori teachers "is a reality" and the Government was training teachers through the Te Ahu o te Reo Māori initiative.
"It's a pathway of getting teachers proficient with te reo Māori, there are courses being held all around the country."
National MP Todd McClay said te reo should not be compulsory because it would not improve understanding between cultures but it should be available as a choice.
"We connect and understand each other fairly well already if you look at most schools ... they incorporate te reo and all New Zealand cultures into the curriculum.
"Ultimately it is one of the official languages of New Zealand but I support a choice rather than compulsion.
"There are very few things in the education system we do make compulsory and ultimately it's for parents and students to make a decision."
In 2020, a National member's bill aimed to make one language class compulsory at primary and intermediate schools was not passed.
"If the government members had decided not to vote it down in 2020, it would be in place right now and the schools would have the resource they need to track the teachers that they require to be able to teach languages."