Went to King’s last week to hear renowned Finnish Educator Pasi Sahlberg. A couple of points he made are worthy of note:
1. High quality of education and high levels of equality are inextricably linked. There are no countries with high quality schools and low levels of social equality. The UK is just above the OECD average for equality and just below it on the quality of education.
2. All OECD countries increase their spend on Special Needs Education as children get older, with the notable exception of Finland where the highest level of spend is in the Early Years (0-7).
3. Teaching is the second most highly trusted profession in Finland and teachers are respected and trusted to get on with the job. They are highly qualified too, all have a Masters degree.
For the main points of his presentation you can see the slides here:
The following day at the “Seizing Success” conference jointly hosted by the National College for School Leadership and the DfE Michael Gove described the Finnish Teacher Education system as “elitist”
Sahlberg’s address to the same conference the following day is summarised here: