What can we learn from the Finnish Education system

I am not necessarily a fan of elements of our current system despite the fact that I continue to implement those elements that in the Finnish system have proven to be ineffective.  Having done a lot of reading about this system recently and over the years there are a number of things we can learn from their system.  However, not necessarily easy to implement because of other systems that impact on education including our social and political climate along with other education systems including the private system, early education, high school, tafe and university.

I thought I would take this opportunity to share some findings for you to think about from their system and perhaps how we might try to implement those things at Payne Road or even in any State School in Queensland.

First of all let’s address the myths about their system:

Some key points from my reading:

  • Collaborative Teaching
  • Special Education programs


  • Teaching the whole child
  • No diagnostic assessment
  • Longer breaks and less teaching time
  • Less homework
  • Concentrate on small data – (more in line with the feedback work)
  • Equity rather than equality
  • Multiple intelligences a consideration
  • Project based learning
  • Ongoing professional development and peer coaching
  • Schools choose their curriculum
  • Wellbeing a focus

Other resources:


My Finnish Education Lessons on YouTube

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One thought on “What can we learn from the Finnish Education system

  1. Sahlberg’s TED talk “Germs that kill schools”, interestingly highlights Talent, Time and Technology as 3 big items for schools to address. Technology-wise, schools can’t match what’s in the ‘hip pocket’ of kids… so we need to ensure technology usage has social connection for the students.

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