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AFT President Randi Weingarten visits schools in Finland to learn how they have ascended to the top in student achievement.

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Comment by Emily Whiteside on November 5, 2012 at 9:00pm

I was also curious about the special education in Finland.  I found another link that is similar to this one but goes into some more specifics about special education:

About 40% of students in Finnish secondary schools receive some kind of special intervention. School faculties include a "special teacher" who is assigned to identify student who need extra help and then provide it.


So apparently a lot of students receive special education in secondary schools, but it doesn't say anything about primary grades.  I think it's notable, however, that they mentioned their use of differentiated instruction.  That strategy probably constitutes a lot of special education services that we push in the US.  As we are quickly learning, the key to inclusive classrooms is differentiated instruction.  

Comment by Lorraine Richardson on October 5, 2012 at 5:24pm
David, I understand your concern. Finland does not have the ethnic or economic diversity we have here in America. Teaching is no longer the revered, respected profession it was when I started . Witness the Chicago Teacher's strike and Teacher Effectiveness legislation laws being passed throughout the country. Because our tax base has eroded, the "reformers" are looking for scapegoats and teachers are an easy target. President Weingarten knows and sees what effective teaching is, but she/union is under attack.
Comment by David Gentile on October 1, 2012 at 12:30pm

Interesting clip! I am curious about the parents, the socio-economic status of the children, the special education rates in Finland. Are they comprable to US? I am most curious about the stark difference in teaching hours...what is their school day like, for the kids and adults? lots and lots of questions...thanks for sharing this clip-


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