With political parties promising to invest millions in the education of the more than 2500 schools throughout New Zealand, our reporter Aroha Treacher went out to the schools of one of the smaller areas, Tolaga Bay Area School and Kahukuranui, to see what they think.
"For a long time here on this part of the East Coast, we've searched for teachers who can teach maths and science. That's one of the important things for us. We are asking the government to invest in those types of teachers," says Tolaga Bay community leader Victor Walker.
Tolaga Bay Area School and Kahukuranui have a roll of more than 250 students. There they learn skills that are relevant to their culture like Māori weaponry and how to use the land. However, it's not just inside the classroom that could do with a little more support.
"We need to strengthen the families here and resource them with the skills to be able to support their children to reach their potential. That goes with one of our sayings here: Kia titirangi te taumata heoi anō kia Uawa nui te whai," says deputy principal Earle Karini.
"It's not as if we're a people who relies solely on the government, we're a people who just gets out there and do what needs to be done," says Walker.