National Standards, class sizes, funding issues and addressing cuts made to early childhood education look to be big topics in the education sector this election.
National's controversial standards system has generated much debate since it was introduced last year, with nearly a third of schools signalling their dislike of it.
Although the party is yet to release its full education policy, it is unlikely to turn its back on the system, which Education Minister Anne Tolley has consistency pushed as a way of identifying primary school children who are struggling in maths, reading and writing.
But Labour was quick to signal early in the election campaign its intention to ditch the standards, despite not releasing its full education policy until late last week.
"We see little point in trying to force schools to do something that their hearts are not in," said education spokeswoman Sue Moroney.
Labour's stance has brought praise from the educational sector union NZEI and the Principals' Federation - both of which say the system is unwanted and unnecessary.
Labour is not alone in its opposition to National Standards. The Green Party and Mana both say they will get rid of the system while United Future says it's "broadly supportive" but the system has been "poorly conceived, inaccurately portrayed, badly communicated and hastily implemented".
Early childhood education is another area where votes are likely to be determined and has been a hot topic at community meetings.
The sector has criticised National heavily for cutting funding to centres with more than 80 per cent fully qualified staff - something that triggered fee increases in many centres.
There have also been fears about the future of 20 hours of funded care. National and Labour have both said they will keep that funding and fee controls but only Labour and the Greens have promised to restore the 100 per cent qualified teacher target.
At a school level both United Future and the Greens say they will address the size of classes - something that has become a major issue for teachers, who voted recently at the PPTA's annual meeting to try to address the issue through a public awareness campaign and reintroducing it in the next pay talks.
United Future said the ratio for Year 1 should be dropped to one teacher for every 15 students, Years 2 and 3 dropped to 1:22 and Years 4-8 to 1:25. The Greens want a maximum of 20 students per class.
At a secondary level Labour plans to invest $75 million over the four years in e-learning for 31,000 Year 7-13 students in low-decile schools - a move that's been welcomed but also criticised for not going far enough.
The Maori Party wants to make te reo compulsorily available in schools by 2015 but says students wouldn't have to take the subject. It also wants financial literacy to be a core component of the curriculum from Year 7.
National, which hasn't announced when it will release its full education policy, has said it will invest $1 billion to modernise and transform schools.
Two parties - the Greens and Mana - want to completely review the country's education.
At a tertiary level parties have mixed views on issues such as students loans and fees.
Act wants to reintroduce interest on student loans, Mana wants to reduce and eventually end tertiary fees while United Future believes there should be free tertiary instead of student allowances.
The Greens, Labour, the Maori Party and United Future all say they will reinstate recent cuts to the training incentive allowance.
Labour also promises to reinstate $13 million worth of adult and community education funding and refugee and migrant study grants, worth $1 million a year.