Top 10 Reasons FINLAND Has the World’s Best SCHOOL SYSTEM
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Top 10 Reasons FINLAND Has the World’s Best SCHOOL SYSTEM


Top 10 Reasons FINLAND Has the World’s Best
SCHOOL SYSTEM 10. Kids get a Strong Start One of the reasons why Finnish schools are
able to perform so strongly is that kids in Finland come to school with a strong foundation. The Finnish government has numerous supports
in place to help families, starting with its famous “baby box” containing clothing,
books, and other infant supplies for the first year, which is provided free of charge to
every expectant mother in Finland. New parents are given ample opportunity to
bond with their babies; mothers receive 4 months of paid maternity leave, and there
is an additional 6-month period of leave available to either mothers or fathers, also with full
pay. If parents choose to use day care, the government
subsidizes facilities with highly-trained staff (lead day-care teachers have bachelor’s
degrees) with income-based assistance for families; the maximum cost per child is $4,000
per year. Full-day preschool is free and high-quality,
and utilized by the majority of Finnish parents, meaning that when children begin school at
age 7, they are coming in with a consistent foundation. Explains one Finnish education official, “We
see it as the right of every child to have daycare and preschool. It’s not a place where you dump your child
while you’re working. It’s a place for your child to play and
learn and make friends.” 9. Top-Notch Teachers with Extensive Training In Finland, teaching is seen as a very desirable
career; teachers are viewed on par with other professionals, such as lawyers and doctors. A research-based master’s degree (fully
paid for by the Finnish government) is a prerequisite for a teaching position, and competition for
acceptance into the top teaching programs can be fierce. One professor reports that in 2012, the University
of Helsinki received over 2,300 applications for the 120 places in its primary school teacher
education program. The requirement of a master’s degree means
that Finnish teachers generally have between 5 and 7.5 years of educational preparation
for their roles before they are responsible for leading their own classroom. Because teachers have undertaken extensive
training for their roles, they are more likely to view teaching as a lifelong profession,
and Finnish society accords teachers a position of respect and prestige, which in turn enables
them to do their jobs even more effectively. 8. High Levels of Teacher Autonomy Having a teaching force comprised of the best
and the brightest, extensively educated for their roles, makes it easy for Finnish government
(and society) to accord teachers a great deal of autonomy in their classrooms. Teachers are given a great deal of latitude
to test innovative approaches to instruction, like developing an “outdoor math” curriculum
or to partner with other teachers to employ a team-based teaching structure. Compared with teachers in other countries,
such as the United States, Finnish teachers generally spend less time in the classroom
than their foreign counterparts, While a middle school teacher in the US might spend 1,080
hours teaching over the course of a 180-day school year, a Finnish middle school teacher
would spend around 600 hours teaching over the same period. This extra time gives Finnish teachers more
time to develop new teaching strategies and to individually assess, and respond to, the
learning needs of their pupils. While Finland has a national education framework,
it is notably brief: the national math goals for grades 1-9 take up only 10 pages. The majority of curriculum decisions are made
locally, by teachers and principals, and teachers and students are evaluated holistically, by
their peers and principals. Finnish teachers are generally accorded more
latitude in the content of their instruction, and the way they deliver it, than most other
teachers around the world. 7. Ample Funds to Help Weak Students Catch Up Some critics of the broad applicability of
Finland’s educational strategies point to Finland’s relatively homogenous population
and the lack of other problems students in its schools contend with. In some ways they are right; Finland’s generous
safety net means that even Finland’s poorest children are not subject to some of the constraints
of poverty—almost all Finnish children have access to adequate food, housing, and health
care. However, Finland’s population is increasingly
diverse (4% foreign born as of 2011), with some schools comprised of more than 50% immigrant
children, and Finland’s schools outperform those of its Nordic neighbors with similar
population demographics. One of the factors that helps Finnish schools
perform so well is the nationwide focus on achieving equality—both among schools and
among students. When students struggle, the state is quick
to provide resources to help them catch up, a goal that teachers embrace. As one Finnish teacher whose school serves
predominantly immigrant students puts it, “Children from wealthy families with lots
of education can be taught by stupid teachers. We try to catch the weak students. It’s deep in our thinking.” Almost 30% of Finnish children will get some
sort of extra help before high school. Schools that serve high-needs populations
(such as many ESL students) are accorded extra “positive discrimination” funds for additional
teachers and counselors. The goal is to educate all children, even
those with special needs, in the same mainstream classrooms (some ESL students may initially
be taught in temporary language immersion classes, and exceptionally disabled students
may receive education outside of mainstream classrooms). Classrooms are not tracked, or sorted by ability
level, ensuring that standards and expectations for students are high across all classrooms
and that all teachers are prepared to work to help struggling students catch up to their
classmates. This emphasis on equality pays off; a recent
study found that Finland had the smallest difference between its weakest students and
its strongest students of any country in the world. 6. Teachers Don’t Teach to the Test (Because
There Isn’t a Test) Despite the fact that Finnish children routinely
achieve top scores on international math and reading tests, standardized testing isn’t
part of the Finnish educational system. The only mandated standardized test for Finnish
students comes at the end of the senior year of high school. Prior to that, there may be optional district-level
tests, but the results aren’t made public and they are not emphasized by teachers, schools,
parents or the media. The lack of emphasis on standardized tests
means that Finnish teachers have a great deal of flexibility in how they structure their
lessons (i.e. an elementary school teacher can focus primarily on science one week, if
the children seem especially engaged in the topics at hand) and the freedom to evaluate
the progress of their students using more individualized metrics. When discussing American-style testing regimes
and the idea of using standardized test results to evaluate teachers, one Finnish principal
describes how this idea is anathema to Finnish educational culture, adding, “If you only
measure the statistics, you miss the human aspect.” An official with the Ministry of Education
even downplays Finland’s students’ success on international tests, saying, “We are
not much interested [in the test results]. It’s not what we are about.” 5. Kids Start School Late This one may seem counterintuitive—how can
less school produce better educational results? Finland proves it is possible—children in
Finland do not start school till age 7 (though near-universal preschool begins at age 6). Clearly the high-quality subsidized daycare
and preschool options mean that even though Finnish kids start school late, they start
informally learning and preparing for school much earlier. However, before age 7, the emphasis is on
experiential learning, through play and movement. Unless children show interest and willingness,
they are not expected to learn to read in kindergarten, an approach backed up with research
showing a lack of long-term benefits for kids who are taught to read in kindergarten. One Finnish principal asserts that this relaxed
approach to learning is a better match for the needs and abilities of his youngest students,
saying, “We have no hurry. Children learn better when they are ready. Why stress them out?” The kids are happier, and because all Finnish
schools share this philosophy, Finnish parents aren’t worried that their children are falling
behind their peers in terms of skill acquisition. 4. Joy and Play are Part of the Curriculum Arja-Sisko Holappa, a counselor for the Finnish
National Board of Education, highlights the importance that Finnish schools place on children’s
enjoyment of learning, pointing out, “There’s an old Finnish saying. Those things you learn without joy you will
forget easily.” In keeping with that philosophy, every Finnish
school has a welfare team dedicated to advancing child happiness in school. In addition to standard classes in language,
math, and science, kids attend a broad array of additional classes in second languages,
PE, arts & crafts, ethics, and music. In between classes, kids are sent outside
for 15 minutes of free-play, as many as four times a day, regardless of weather. Finnish teachers and parents view these unstructured
jaunts as a necessary part of the learning process. The focus on joy extends beyond the classroom. While homework varies by teacher, Finnish
children generally complete less homework than their peers in other developed countries,
giving them more time for play—and joy—when they get home from school as well. 3. Everyone Attends Public School One of the most unusual, and some would say,
most overlooked, aspects of the Finnish school system is the near-universal attendance of
public schools. There are very few independent schools in
Finland, and even those are publically financed and barred from charging tuition. Pasi Sahlberg, a Finnish Education Ministry
offical and author of Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change
in Finland? points to this factor, as well as the Finnish
cultural tendency to value cooperation over competition, as one of the reasons why Finland’s
schools are so strong. In Finland, everyone is invested in the success
and quality of the nation’s public schools. Something that works well at one school is
quickly shared with others, so that best practices can reach every student, because schools do
not see themselves as competing for students or test scores. Practically, there’s no way to truly opt
out of the public school system in Finland, so everyone is equally invested in the quality
of the schools (unlike in many developed countries, where public schools compete with private
schools for students, teachers and funding). 2. Finnish Kids Have Bright Futures, Tailored
to Their Strengths and Interests The Finnish school system is exceptionally
good at ensuring students complete high school; 93% of Finnish students graduate from a vocational
or academic high school, a rate that is significantly higher than that of many other developed countries. At age 16, Finnish kids, who have been in
the same “comprehensive schools” since age 7, are given the option of continuing
on to vocational education programs, which prepare them for work in construction, health
care, restaurants, and offices as well as entry into a polytechnic institute, or of
pursuing an academic program, which will prepare them for university. About 43% of students choose the vocational
route. Finnish students who complete high school
know that the state will pay for all of their post-graduate education at one of Finland’s
8 national universities (or a polytechnic institute for vocational graduates). 66% of Finns continue on to higher education,
one of the highest rates in the EU. 1. Equality Amongst Schools As this list has shown, the concept of equality,
long important in the Finnish culture, is one of the central reasons its schools are
so successful. But the idea of equality within the Finnish
school system goes well beyond making sure all kids have a good start in life and working
aggressively to help weaker students catch up. It means not only minimizing differences amongst
students, but also means minimizing the differences among schools, making sure that all the schools
in Finland are equally strong. Why is it important that Finnish schools offer
such similar educational outcomes and resources? It prevents school shopping—when parents,
administrators, and teachers to concentrate at high-performing schools, drawing resources
to “good” schools, and creating a death spiral for weaker schools, who lose resources,
including students, as parents seek better options for their kids and the best teachers
flee to better-resourced programs. One expert in Finnish education compares school
choice in the US to that in Finland, saying that in the US, schools are, “the same idea
of a marketplace…Schools are a shop and parents can buy what ever they want. In Finland, the parents can also choose. But the options are all the same.” Because of this idea of equality, everyone
is incentivized to promote across-the-board improvements in the educational system, rather
than seeing school improvement as a zero sum game, where schools compete to be the best. It also means that even in socioeconomically
disadvantaged areas, where schools in many other countries are weaker, Finland’s schools
serve their students just as well as those in the country’s wealthiest areas.

About James Carlton

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100 thoughts on “Top 10 Reasons FINLAND Has the World’s Best SCHOOL SYSTEM

  1. I requested this topic from our writing staff months ago and I'm happy that we could now publish it here on YouTube. I am an American and I was disappointed to find out how far back America really was especially compared to Finland in education. I hope this list helps open the eyes of people that can make a change.

  2. As someone who's gone to school in an Asian country this honestly seems like some kind of unattainable dream for me aghhh

    I wish school here was 1000% less stressful, I wouldn't have to be dealing with anxieties and pills 24/7

  3. Okay mate. Time to tackle overpaid college presidents and over paid auxiliary deans and assistants. University of Washington president receives an egregious $900,000 annually. Time to stop this hierarchy of spending.

  4. I am a public school teacher. Just let me say that America’s education system sucks! I’m a teacher because I want to see these children experience the joy of learning new things! Instead, they learn how to conform and take standardized tests. IN AMERICA, CREATIVITY IS FROWNED UPON. As teachers, we are to teach what we are told, how we are told, what we can grade, and exactly how to grade it.

  5. This is the first time I see Finnish score the highest in the world in the tests. I see no greatest discoveries, inventions and ideas pouring from Finland. Too much glorification too few challenges.

  6. Philippines is way too dead compared to this, here iam a senior high student cramming over thousands of work i wont even remember after 5 years… Saaaddd 😩😩😩 this sucks

  7. 4:38 that’s my old school! It’s called cygnaeus! It’s actually a Swedish speaking school, but the school system is still the same as all the other schools!

  8. This only work in low population country with no essentially competition. The kids are allowed to have a happy childhood because the government will feed them what ever they choose to become, an artist or a hippy. Always wonder how do these countries not go bankrupt

  9. Well, this sounds great for balance, happiness and social harmony, but then again in terms of Nobel Prizes for instance, US: 368, FInland: 4. The only other countries that come close to the US are UK: 132 and Germany: 107. The US still provides most of the technology and scientific advancements that the rest of the world are using, including Finland. In my opinion, while places like Finland that are great to live and are able to establish an ideologically homogenous society founded mostly on Judeo/Christian values, as long as there are opposing ideologies in the world that will seek to over come it, a strong competitive nation like the US that tries to distill the very best is required to stay ahead. The rest of the world often downplays the value of what the US does for the world, but they have the luxury and are only free to do so in the shadows of what the US provides for the rest of us. The US is far from perfect, but in the end, there has to be a nation like America.

  10. These videos saying that Finnish school is efficient kind of give the false idea thay they're easy. No they're not. Finnish students are held to a high standard (though without the fuzz) and expected to make an effort, and Finnish exchange students almost always find their ways on advanced level classes in other countries, because the regular level is too easy.

    Another misunderstanding that you come across a lot, is that Finnish school is disproportionately expensive in taxes, or that if you don't pay taxes, you save so much money. But in fact, middle class people in more capitalistic countries spend more money on consumerism, while they also have to save up money for studying costs, an emergency fund, and whatnot. So they would be putting away the same amount of money annually if they handled their finances well, that the Finn pays in taxes. But they have to do the counting and managing themselves. The system in which you're charged, doesn't affect the amount you're charged in any simple way. You can't really argue that one pays more than the other before you actually do the calculations. I didn't come across any so I assume we're all guessing here.

    Some also say that Finns pay more taxes in total than Americans. That's not true, because America is at war, Finland is not, and Finland has about the cheapest military possible, because we have military training and defence as a civil duty. In other words, soldiers aren't paid a wage, only an allowance of a few euros a day. Most of the military funding goes to those Hornets that need to be replaced sometimes.

  11. High stakes testing ruined public education and I'm not sure it will ever recover. It took all of the fun out of both teaching and learning.

  12. It’s stupid how bad America is at the education system. We are so stressed to get an A on a test and are forced to work until 1am to get homework done!

  13. Great video although i hate top ten videos and usually never click them. The fixed number of arguments makes no sense and encourages filler arguments or cutting off important arguments. Also its a clickbait effect in most cases which i hate even more. (although you made it way more sympathic than others).

    As to clickbait i regard it like a weapon to waste the society's time with enormous accumulated damage..

  14. hi, i am from pakistan, i am very impressed finland education system, anybody help me to fully adopt this system in my school??
    please any teacher from finland contact me on 0092342648519 wtsapp. i will be very thankful for whole life

  15. I am a teacher in the U.S. Our biggest issue isn’t our school system but our money hungry individualistic culture.

  16. So I'm a student in Uni going into High School education and OMG this sounds like heaven. Little overload on greatness.

  17. I wish I could study there rather than here in Nepal…we've so much stress here even to complete the high school… I actually wish if the education system of Nepal too changes like that😔

  18. Still puttin Western schools to shame. If the universities over there are as profound as the grade schools Im moving over there at the end of this year.

  19. In the U.S. & parts of Britain, there has been a general loss of civility & a loss of respect for "authority"—in and out of 'school'! Interest in learning is often supplanted by individuals' need for "attention," usually at the cost of progress? and order….; the "children" often turn up unprepared to listen—much less focus….! Inattentive pupils–who cannot be ignored?—stumble & stammer…..frustrating ready-to-learn class members to drift into a stupor of boredom…..

  20. We lived below our means so my wife could stay home with the 4 children. We didn't do day care or preschool, but raised our children with books and intellectual stimulation. All did well in school, and have become successful adults. But it takes time and work.

    If we want to follow the Finnish model, we'll have to raise taxes, invest in our schools and social safety nets, and reward the best teachers while eliminating the worst teachers. We also need to get all parents on board with the need to support education. Success begins at home. It's not enough to expect the schools to do it all..

  21. my system of education …..
    Willingly invite students for learning.
    Cease tradition schools
    Eliminate all curriculum
    Focus areas where students reflect better
    Teachers only facilitate learning
    No exam at all
    Besides learning, skills should impart.
    Art, literature Painting music dance
    critical thinking are to be taught at primary and elementary level.
    Philosophy and all Sciences to be followed at higher levels…
    snd and so on so forth.

  22. Make me a list of famous Finnish scientists, inventions, businessmen that changed the world. I did a quick google for famous Finnish inventions and got the rescue tobbogan, sauna, and the Molotav cocktail. Perhaps their system doesn't really produce the best contributors to the human race.

  23. I´m from Argentina. I really love Finland education. In my country, it´s compulsory to start school at the age of three and four. Honestly, I can´t undestand the reason behind this method, but everyone seems to accept it. We have to take notes from this video.

  24. I am finnish and I at the moment studying to be a teachers, I'll start studying my master studies next fall. I will be a math and physics teacher 😀

  25. the class session takes 45minutes and after that there is 15min recess and then another class session and so on….

  26. Am a teacher and strongly support this .Wish we in India were open minded enough to adopt this

  27. The Best teaching System in the world? Really? This is sheer mass manipulation. I want to see results. Someone please provide a list of The latest scientific achievements over the Last 10 years,from Finland, of course

  28. typical socialist propaganda…canada has a public school system that is free(taxpayer) as well as some faith based schools also free(taxpayer)….there are private schools which are very expensive but in the end the students do not perform any better than public students…they get more oportunities through connections…faith based schools and home schooled kids outperform all the others. They dont mention curriculum which is the biggest issue…they mention how they teach but never mention what they teach…that is the crux of the issue…and kids dont really get to choose university or vocational school…kids who dont perform well academically are still forced into vocational trg and are barred from university….the story is not as nice as they pretend…this is the same model as germany has…its still all state run, state ordered state mandated,…no where do they state that i as a parent have the right to teach my own kids….they do state that your kids will be in state run daycares from birth till age 7…best propaganda i have ever seen….

  29. In Singapore it is business and profits…high competition…. I will love to teach in Finland!….can l????…👏👍💞

  30. The world in general must understand that learning is not about consuming tons of data in a splitsecond like some kind of computer and doing something with it and then in general not feeling anything. We humans are not machines. Away with this data-oriented reality that degrades humans to nothing but machines and mathematical statements.

  31. Thank you for this information, very enlightening. I must add, however, that your delivery is stilted and monotonous.

  32. Well, in Denmark elementary education is not viewed as a top-notch job…basically it's considered a womens job nowadays. Meaning it's more like a carejob…the rest you can figure out for yourself.

  33. Well done. What's sucks big time in America is you have to buy so much school supplies before they start school. We cant afford it. School in America isn't about learning. It's about tests, and school is very stressful for kids. Bullying is out of control because of social media. Class room sizes are ridiculous. Weaker students dont get the attention they need, which causes stress and low self worth. They hardly go outside. School lunches are not like when I was in school. There is just so much wrong in American schools. It is sad. Glad Finland got it right

  34. The Finnish degree's are garbage. At least here in the US we actually have to spend our time and work to pay for our degrees and they aren't paid for by the taxpayers like the Finns.

  35. America can do far better than this given the sheer amount of resources and brainpower. If we can invest only a fraction of our military budget into our schools, you will see amazing results.

  36. I am a Finn who lives in Sweden and have children here. I'm not particularly nervous about it. The Swedish school system has not the best reputation but they succeed in creating a lot of successful and happy individuals year after year. What they don't get from school, they get from the culture. Unfortunately, it is not as equitable as the Finnish system. It became a right-wing country some twenty years ago.

  37. This is fluff piece.the Finnish are world renowned for their………..I'll wait.randomly naming a country as the best is great.for large first world countries let me put this in perspective;a large city in the USA or china (based on population) all with the same people do really well in school,we think.

  38. Meanwhile in other parts of the world schools are reduced to businesses, children from poor families can't even afford education and even PhDs don't know how to teach. 😣

  39. We study the philosophy of education while Finland enjoyably applies all of it. This facts made me cry because the country I am in needs decades to achieve this excellent ES. How to be a FINNISH btw? Thinking of a rebirth 😂

  40. Finland worked hard to get to where they are in this area; investment, social contracts, and public understanding and equal access, moreover, they have a culture that, in general, agrees that these methods are in the best interest of the children and the country. This was not always the case, but since the 1970's, steady, and continual growth is demonstrated, in the area of education, as well as high levels of equality as well as equity for all learners. Pasi Sahlberg has a very informative white paper on this very topic in greater detail should anyone be interested. Kiitos!

  41. One big elephant in the room is that how and how well are they going to integrate themselves to professional worlds…

    Ya that's cool about equality and less competitiveness and all that, but getting a job in a competitive capitalistic world doesn't change.

    How well do those Finnish do against other counterparts from other countries? For example, are there competitive scientists, researchers, engineers, entrepreneurs, etc?

    There aren't much of big job markets there obviously because of small size of the country. So where does money come from to hire people when companies need to compete globally in their businesses??

    A whole cash and talent flow in Finland is obscure for me.

  42. As an American, that was a pretty depressing to watch. Not American? Imagine the exact opposite of this video in every way.. that's public school philosophy in America.

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