Monday, 24 January 2011

What is it about schools in Finland?

Students in Finland spend fewer hours in school and do less homework than their peers in most OECD countries...

Children start their nine-year compulsory education at seven and almost all six-year-olds attend free preschool. Finland’s current system doesn't separate students early on into academic or vocational education. The Government sets out the national curriculum, but local schools and teachers are free to determine the best way of delivering it, right down to the choice of textbooks and teaching and learning methods. Teachers also create their own ways to measure student progress, and learning-oriented assessment is an integral part of daily school life. School and teacher autonomy are seen as the factors that positively affect the high quality performance of schools and the entire education system. The National Matriculation Examination, a battery of four to seven subject tests, is taken at the end of upper-secondary school, and most graduates continue on for another three years of general or vocational education, and either path can lead to university-level studies.

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