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Two Women Talking

Moving Beyond Pilot Programs

by Chris Weller

Business Insider

Article excerpt

Almost all education research takes place in the US — but Finland is using it better

Almost all education research takes place in the US, and American schools can’t seem to learn from any of it — and yet Finnish people do.

Our take

Following the Followers

Despite the fact that the U.S. is believed to be the source of virtually all educational research, U.S. educators aren’t using the results of this research as other countries are. In this article, Finland is called out as being adept at translating research into educational improvements. Why is the U.S. lagging behind?

Finland has long been lauded as being a world leader in education with educational philosophies that focus on autonomy and flexibility in assessment. One Finnish educator points to the inability to move beyond pilot to widespread adoption of best practices as a potential problem, pointing to school boards as common barriers to expansion. This year’s SXSWedu conference demonstrated that innovation is very clearly in the wind across K-12, pre-K and university levels, and technology is more often than not at the center of it all. There may just be more opportunity to spread these great ideas more broadly, and more rapidly.