1
School Choice in Finland
The Catholic
University of Chile
Santiago
15. November 2010
Piia Seppänen
post doctoral researc...
2
The Content
1. The policy named school choice in Finland
 Arguments for politics of school choice
 A role of school ch...
3
Arguments for politics of school choice
Original ideological hopes for school choice
(Friedman & Friedman 1980; Chub and...
4
The Content
1. The policy named school choice in Finland
 Arguments for politics of school choice
 A role of school ch...
5
School choice policy in Finland in relation
to features in compulsory schooling
Features of comp.s.
(‘extremes’)
In Finl...
6
For every pupil in basic educationFor every pupil in basic education
free of charge, in every school:free of charge, in ...
7
School choice policy in Finland in relation
to features in compulsory schooling
Features of comp.s.
(‘extremes’)
In Finl...
4
21
1. Helsinki (583 350)
2. Espoo (244 330)
3. Tampere (211 507)
4. Vantaa (197 636)
5. Turku (176 087)
6. Oulu (139 133...
4
© Kuntarajat: Tilastokeskus
KL/JAH 16.6.2010
A proportion of pupils in basic education
in the eight largest cities of Fi...
10
School choice policy in Finland in relation
to features in compulsory schooling
Features of comp.s.
(‘extremes’)
In Fin...
11
‘The main stages for
school choice’ in the
urban compulsory
schooling of Finland
 7 – 9 grade schools
The 7th grade (c...
12
Some choice possibilities
of a case pupil
13
Finnish school choice policy
 in urban areas since the middle of the 1990s
 in publicly run compulsory school system
...
14
In Year
1975/1980 and
2000
A. Zoned
comprehensive
B. Open enrolment in
comprehensive / partly
comprehensive systems
C. ...
15
On basis of figure 1
an outline of changes in
comprehensive school systems
of EU member countries from
the end of 1970'...
16
The Content
1. The policy named school choice in Finland
 Arguments for politics of school choice
 A role of school c...
Espoo
Data from four cities
Espoo, Turku, Lahti and Kuopio
in year 2000:
- Statistics of an age cohort’s preferences
(N 51...
1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows
were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort
applied to anoth...
19
The most popular schools: A, B
Popular schools: C, D
Schools with balanced application flows: E, F
Rejected schools: G
...
1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows
were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort
applied to anoth...
21
Pupils’ applying to the 7th grade to the other than
allocated school (popularity type) and those who didn't apply
in re...
22
Pupils’ applying to the 7th grade to the other than
allocated school (popularity type) in relation to mother’s
educatio...
1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows
were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort
applied to anoth...
24
The Content
conclusions of school choice in Finland
1. The policy named school choice in Finland
 Arguments for polit...
25
References
 Chubb, J.E. & Moe, T.M. 1990. Politics, Markets & America’s Schools.
Washington, D.C.: The Brookings Insti...
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Piia Seppänen, post doctoral researcher CELE, University of Turku,Finland

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Piia Seppänen, post doctoral researcher CELE, University of Turku,Finland

  1. 1. 1 School Choice in Finland The Catholic University of Chile Santiago 15. November 2010 Piia Seppänen post doctoral researcher CELE, University of Turku Finland
  2. 2. 2 The Content 1. The policy named school choice in Finland  Arguments for politics of school choice  A role of school choice policy in comprehensive schooling systems 2. Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  3. 3. 3 Arguments for politics of school choice Original ideological hopes for school choice (Friedman & Friedman 1980; Chub and Moe 1990):  Children from disadvantage areas get option for better schools – Equal opportunities  Competition of schools drives better services – Quality improvement An original idea of vouchers has transformed to versatile applications in schooling reforms of countries In Finland either of previous arguments were dominant when school choice policies were discussed in the middle and late of 1990’s. Arguments by the Finnish choice policy advocators (Seppänen 2003b):  Supports pupils’ personal development, talents and inclinations, will boost of motivation - Individuality
  4. 4. 4 The Content 1. The policy named school choice in Finland  Arguments for politics of school choice  A role of school choice policy in comprehensive schooling systems 2. Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  5. 5. 5 School choice policy in Finland in relation to features in compulsory schooling Features of comp.s. (‘extremes’) In Finland 1. Ownership of schools (public – private) 98% municipal (under 1% state) and 2% subsidised private schools (2008) All free of charge and non-profit organis. 2. The structure (comprehensive – parallel) Since 1970’s comprehensive, 9 years. No academic or vocational tracks. Comprehensive pupil support free of charge. 3. Governance (state – other actors) 4. Allocation of pupils to schools (catchment areas – open enrollment) 5. Pupil selection (no selection – total selection)
  6. 6. 6 For every pupil in basic educationFor every pupil in basic education free of charge, in every school:free of charge, in every school: -textbooks and other learningtextbooks and other learning materialsmaterials -school transport, if journey is over 5school transport, if journey is over 5 kilometres to a named schoolkilometres to a named school -daily warm school mealdaily warm school meal -pupil welfare services (social andpupil welfare services (social and health care)health care) For the pupils in need of specialFor the pupils in need of special support all special aids required forsupport all special aids required for participation in education.participation in education. A national core curricula hours/week: 1-2 grade 19 3-4 grade 23 5-6 grade 24 7-9 grade 30 (inc.13 optional subjects) Total 222 + remedial lessons are availableremedial lessons are available The school yearThe school year 190 school days, 5 days / week190 school days, 5 days / week
  7. 7. 7 School choice policy in Finland in relation to features in compulsory schooling Features of comp.s. (‘extremes’) In Finland 1. Ownership of schools (public – private) 98% municipal (under 1% state) and 2% subsidised private schools (2008) All free of charge and non-profit organis. 2. The structure (comprehensive – parallel) Since 1970’s comprehensive, 9 years. No academic or vocational tracks. Comprehensive pupil support free of charge. 3. Governance (state – other actors) A strong tradition of central state governance changed during 1990’s to municipal power with national steering. 4. Allocation of pupils to schools (catchment areas – open enrollment) 5. Pupil selection (no selection – total selection)
  8. 8. 4 21 1. Helsinki (583 350) 2. Espoo (244 330) 3. Tampere (211 507) 4. Vantaa (197 636) 5. Turku (176 087) 6. Oulu (139 133) 7. Jyväskylä (129 623) 8. Lahti (100 854) Total population in the eight largest cities: 1,78 milj. 3 6 5 7 8 © Kuntarajat: Tilastokeskus KL/JAH 16.6.2010 Areas of municipalities (total 342): Town (62) Rural area (214) Denselypopulated area (66) Sorce: The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities The eight largest cities of Finland in 2009, 33,3% of total 5,35 milj. (population) The capital area (1 milj.)
  9. 9. 4 © Kuntarajat: Tilastokeskus KL/JAH 16.6.2010 A proportion of pupils in basic education in the eight largest cities of Finland in 20091. Helsinki (8,5%) 2. Espoo (4,9%) 3. Tampere (3,0%) 4. Vantaa (3,9%) 5. Turku (2,6%) 6. Oulu (2,3%) 7. Jyväskylä (2,3%) 8. Lahti (1,8%) The capital area (17,3% pupils) 21 3 6 5 7 8 Total 29,3% of 1-9 grade pupils live in the eight largest cities of Finland (total number 584 246 pupils) Areas of municipalities (total 342): Town (62) Rural area (214) Denselypopulated area (66) Sorce: The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities
  10. 10. 10 School choice policy in Finland in relation to features in compulsory schooling Features of comp.s. (‘extremes’) In Finland 1. Ownership of schools (public – private) 2. The structure (comprehensive – parallel) 3. Governance (state – other actors) 98% municipal (under 1% state) and 2% subsidised private schools (2008) All free of charge and non-profit organis. Since 1970’s comprehensive, 9 years No academic or vocational tracks. Comprehensive pupil support free of charge. A strong tradition of central state governance changed during 1990’s to municipal power with national steering. 4. Allocation of pupils to schools (catchment areas – open enrollment) 5. Pupil selection (no selection – total selection) A named school place + pupil can apply to another school A right to a named school, otherwise oversubscription criteria. Pupil selection to so called specialised/emphasised classes (e.g. music, languages, sport, math, art), usually aptitude tests or previous success in particular subjects.  varies between cities School choice policy
  11. 11. 11 ‘The main stages for school choice’ in the urban compulsory schooling of Finland  7 – 9 grade schools The 7th grade (continuing & starting emphasised classes)  1 – 6 grade schools The 3rd grade (emphasised classes) The 1st grade (language classes)  1 – 9 grades schools (emphasised classes)
  12. 12. 12 Some choice possibilities of a case pupil
  13. 13. 13 Finnish school choice policy  in urban areas since the middle of the 1990s  in publicly run compulsory school system (i.e. ‘choice’ between public schools)  varies between cities on:  how school places are allocated  mainly geographical catchment areas  a role of parental preferences over schools vary  how vastly specialised classes i.e. pupil selection are used  is different from e.g. England and Wales where ’parental choice’ was a key element of school quasi- markets since 1980’s (involving open enrolment, school autonomy and diversity, per capita funding, privatised provision, accountability mechanisms (e.g. Whitty et al. 1998) and along 2000 expansion of specialisation and privatisation of schools)
  14. 14. 14 In Year 1975/1980 and 2000 A. Zoned comprehensive B. Open enrolment in comprehensive / partly comprehensive systems C. Selection by ability 1. Centralised (with elements of devolution and choice) Sweden Finland Denmark France Italy Greece Portugal France Italy Greece Portugal Spain Luxembourg Luxembourg Austria Austria Belgium 2. Regional Devolution (with some minor devolution and choice) Spain Belgium Germany Germany 3. Local Control (with national 'steering' and some school autonomy) England & Wales Sweden Finland Denmark Ireland & NI Ireland & NI 4. Institutional Autonomy in Quasi-Market England & Wales Netherlands Netherlands The change in models of education governance in relation to admission models from the end of 1970's to the end of 1990's in EU member countries at the time (Green, Wolf & Leney 1999; modified in Seppänen 2006, see also Kivirauma, Rinne & Seppänen 2009)
  15. 15. 15 On basis of figure 1 an outline of changes in comprehensive school systems of EU member countries from the end of 1970's to the end of 1990's could be named as: 1. Stable selective continental European countries (an exception of France) and Ireland, as well as Northern Ireland 2. Southern European comprehensivisation 3. Scandinavian change from central to local control with some choice 4. British and Dutch institutional autonomy in quasi- markets (some countries may make deviations in detail)
  16. 16. 16 The Content 1. The policy named school choice in Finland  Arguments for politics of school choice  A role of school choice policy in comprehensive schooling systems 2. Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  17. 17. Espoo Data from four cities Espoo, Turku, Lahti and Kuopio in year 2000: - Statistics of an age cohort’s preferences (N 5152) over the 7th grade schools - A postal questionnaire of families (n 1523) SES & reasons for choice Turku Kuopio Lahti © Kuntarajat: Tilastokeskus KL/JAH 16.6.2010 Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities (Seppänen 2006) Areas of municipalities (total 342): Town (62) Rural area (214) Denselypopulated area (66) Sorce: The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities
  18. 18. 1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort applied to another than the allocated school, ½ in the capital city Helsinki 2. Families' "self-selection" to the school popularity levels or outside the markets 3. Socio-economic profile of schools segregated more strongly according to parental "choices" than based on catchment areas 4. The nature of families' preferences to attend to schools seemed to be practical, social and class-related based on open-ended answers in a postal questionnaire Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  19. 19. 19 The most popular schools: A, B Popular schools: C, D Schools with balanced application flows: E, F Rejected schools: G Highly rejected schools: H, I Applying out of their own catchment area 5 - 9 pupils 10 - 20 pupils over 20 pupils The distance between schools corresponds to a scale of = 500 meters Centre G I D C B A E H F A mapping of pupils' applications for the 7th grade to other than allocated school between nine schools in a Finnish case city (Seppänen 2003)
  20. 20. 1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort applied to another than the allocated school, ½ in the capital city Helsinki 2. Families' "self-selection" to the school popularity levels or outside the markets 3. Socio-economic profile of schools segregated more strongly according to parental "choices" than based on catchment areas 4. The nature of families' preferences to attend to schools seemed to be practical, social and class-related based on open-ended answers in a postal questionnaire Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  21. 21. 21 Pupils’ applying to the 7th grade to the other than allocated school (popularity type) and those who didn't apply in relation to mother’s education (%) (Seppänen 2006) * those pupils who attended to the catchment area school are emphasized three times, so that the sample represents the population. 11 13 19 25 8 8 6 7 4 4 3 1 77 75 72 67 0 % 20 % 40 % 60 % 80 % 100 % No vocational Basic vocational Polytechnics University Aplied to popular Aplied to balanced Aplied to rejected Did not apply Mother’s education, N 1490 (2886*), in four cities:
  22. 22. 22 Pupils’ applying to the 7th grade to the other than allocated school (popularity type) in relation to mother’s education (%) (Seppänen 2006) 48 53 66 76 34 31 23 22 18 17 11 3 0 % 20 % 40 % 60 % 80 % 100 % No vocational Basic vocational Polytechnics University To popular To balanced To rejected Mother’s education, N 792, in four cities:
  23. 23. 1. Popularity of schools divided and application flows were towards centres. On average 1/3 of age cohort applied to another than the allocated school, 1/2 in the capital city Helsinki 2. Families' "self-selection" to the school popularity levels or outside the markets 3. Socio-economic profile of schools segregated more strongly according to parental "choices" than based on catchment areas 4. The nature of families' preferences to attend to schools seemed to be practical, social and class-related based on open-ended answers in a postal questionnaire Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000
  24. 24. 24 The Content conclusions of school choice in Finland 1. The policy named school choice in Finland  Arguments for politics of school choice  A role of school choice policy in comprehensive schooling systems 2. Brief features of ‘the lived education markets’ in four Finnish cities, 2000 is applied form different premises than in English-speaking tradition but in practise creates socially segregating outcomes
  25. 25. 25 References  Chubb, J.E. & Moe, T.M. 1990. Politics, Markets & America’s Schools. Washington, D.C.: The Brookings Institution.  Friedman, M. & Friedman, R. 1980. Free to Choose: a personal statement. Harmondsworth : Penguin Books.  Green, A., Wolf, A. & Leney T. 1999. Convergence and Divergence in European Education and Training Systems. University of London. Institute of Education.  Kivirauma,J., Rinne, R. & Seppänen, P. 2009. Changing the Tide of Education Policyin Finland: From Nordic to EU educational policy model. In 'Hill, D. (ed.) The Rich World and the Impoverishment of Education: Diminishing Democracy, Equity and Workers’ Rights. New York: Routledge  Seppänen, P. 2003a. Miten ja miksi kouluvalintapolitiikka tuli Suomen peruskouluun 1990-luvulla? Kouluvalinnan lainsäädäntömuutokset sekä perustelut ja kritiikki kansainvälisessä valossa. [How and why school choice policy arrived at the Finnish comprehensive school during the 1990s. The legislation changes and arguments of the school choice in the international perspective] Yhteiskuntapolitiikka 68, 2, 175-187  Seppänen, P. 2003b. Patterns of 'public-school markets' in the Finnish comprehensive school from a comparative perspective. Journal of Education Policy, 18 (5), 513-531.  Seppänen, P. 2006. Koulunvalintapolitiikka perusopetuksessa. Suomalaiskaupunkien koulumarkkinat kansainvälisessä valossa. [School- Choice Policy in Comprehensive Schooling – School markets of Finnish cities in the international perspective] Turku: Finnish Educational Research Association: Research in Educational Sciences 26.  Whitty, G., Power, S. & Halpin, D. 1998. Devolution and Choice in Education. The School, the State and the Markets. Buckingham: Open University Press.

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