Another Purpose

Different Kind of Rigor

At FIS, the teacher would structure each day according to her students’ energy levels, rather than a strict lesson plan. “If they seemed tired, she would give them more breaks. The day wasn’t about getting through a set curriculum. There was a lot of flexibility,”

Finland credits this rejection of standardized testing as one of the biggest reasons for its success. While the kids are being tested, though, their abilities are being constantly assessed. Their teachers scrutinized their work throughout the year — not to decide whether they would pass or fail — but to understand how their skills were developing and how to help them.

Equality of Progress


“Teaching is based on support, participation and interaction. The pupils work hard, but are not forced to do so by demands, intimidation or pressure,”

Finnish school system is “an answer to a prayer” for children with mild learning disabilities. Classrooms in Finland have never treated ADHD as a problem. In Finland, students with learning disabilities are typically placed in regular classrooms but receive extra support. They are also given individual learning plans, to set them up for success on their own terms.

How Finland Became The Best?

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.

Anonymity of Educators

In a world where many nations view learning as a race and view accomplishments with the utmost importance, Finland shows us that there is another way, one that doesn’t leave students and teachers burnt out.

The Finnish education system is based on trust in teachers and teacher education. Trust allows teachers the freedom to relax and concentrate on the children in front of them, creatively coming up with ways to cater to each child.

Teachers have the power to decide which teaching methods and learning materials they want to use.

Student-Teacher Proximity

The relationship between teachers and students is also a lot more relaxed, and can be a point of controversy for those in stricter systems in other countries.

Teachers are referred to informally by their first names, and physical touch isn’t banned. In Finland, if a child is upset and needs comfort, teachers are allowed to pick the child up and cuddle them.

This is strikingly different to other countries where physical touch is banned for safeguarding reasons. This controversial difference highlights the level of trust that Finland places in its teachers.