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Charter Schools, Education, Finland's Education System, GERM (Global Education Reform Movement), Partnership Schools, Private Schools, Privatisation of state schools

Education systems: Finland v. NZ charter schools v. NZ state schools

At 1am last night a Kiwi charter school operator emailed me to boast that his school has done inquiry learning like the Fins for over 10 years. He said this as if it was novel – as if no other school in NZ is doing it.

It struck me as bizarre that he was implying his schools were on the Finnish model – it’s like comparing apples and oranges and saying they are the same because they both have pips.

So I thought it’d be worth comparing some key aspects of Finland and NZ’s school systems:

mortar board DO THESE SCHOOLS’ TEACHERS HAVE TO HOLD A TEACHING QUALIFICATION

All Finland’s Schools:  Yes. Minimum of a Master’s Degree in Education

New Zealand State Schools: Yes. Minimum of a recognised teaching qualification

New Zealand Charter Schools: No

New Zealand Private Schools: No

dollar deskCAN THOSE RUNNING THESE SCHOOLS KEEP INCOME AS PROFIT?

All Finland’s Schools:  No

New Zealand State Schools: No

New Zealand Charter Schools: Yes

New Zealand Private Schools: Yes

curriculumDO THESE SCHOOLS HAVE TO FOLLOW THE NATIONAL CURRICULUM?

All Finland’s Schools:  Yes

New Zealand State Schools: Yes

New Zealand Charter Schools: No

New Zealand Private Schools: No

accept rejectIS SELECTIVE ADMISSION PERMITTED?

All Finland’s Schools:  No

New Zealand State Schools: No

New Zealand Charter Schools: No, but no high level special education needs students have been admitted to an NZ charter school as yet.

New Zealand Private Schools: Yes

spirit_of_inquiryDOES INQUIRY LEARNING TAKE PLACE IN THESE SCHOOLS?

All Finland’s Schools: Yes

New Zealand State Schools: Yes, some

New Zealand Charter Schools: Yes, some

New Zealand Private Schools: Unknown

It appears that Finland’s schools have more in common with NZ state schools than NZ charter or private schools, sorry Alwyn.  And if teachers had their way, NZ schools would be even more like Finland’s with no national grading at primary level, no cherry-picking of students, small class sizes in every school, equal funding for all schools, no league tables, food for all students, free school equipment for all students, and all teachers fully qualified…

Unfortunately, the Education Minister prefers to take us in another, less favourable, divisive direction that ignores inequities and instead promotes National Standards, league tables, and parallel but unequal systems like charter schools…

All the inquiry learning in the world won’t redress that.

~ Dianne

Sources:

Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland?, Pasi Sahlberg, New York: Teachers College Press, 2011

http://ero.govt.nz/

http://www.minedu.fi/OPM/Koulutus/?lang=en

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_Finland#Basic_comprehensive_education

http://www.standupforkids.org.nz/charter-schools/

About Save Our Schools NZ

"One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds." Gandhi

Discussion

3 thoughts on “Education systems: Finland v. NZ charter schools v. NZ state schools

  1. How can a kiwi charter school operator his school has been ‘doing’ inquiry learning for ten years, given that charter schools have only been running since 2014? And how do you ‘do’ inquiry learning anyway?

    >

    Like

    Posted by Allan Alach | March 22, 2015, 12:13 pm
    • Because this charter school operator has run private schools for years and only just got into the charter school arena, Allan. That’s why I included private schools in my comparisons. What he actually said was “very much like the ​curriculum the Villa Education Trust has been promoting in its schools for the past 13 years.”
      ~ Dianne

      Like

      Posted by Save Our Schools NZ | March 22, 2015, 2:47 pm
  2. I can only hope that Britain begins to adopt more progressive strategies from educational world leaders like Finland. We remain anchored in the 19th century, as argued here:

    http://lovelanguageloveliterature.com/2015/03/23/british-education-a-humiliating-story/

    Like

    Posted by richmalpass | March 24, 2015, 9:50 am

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