As part of our Election 2017 coverage The Big Issues aims to explain where the major political parties stand on those issues most important to New Zealanders.

In this first episode, Herald education reporter Simon Collins walks us through National and Labour's policies on education.

A key part of National's policy is setting educational standards and making sure that most students achieve them - particularly trying to lift Māori and Pacific kids.

Labour's policies include making education genuinely free for the first time in 30 years and abolishing National Standards.

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Watch the video above for the full rundown.