31.07.2016, Johanna Järvinen-Taubert
Education Export – Mission Impossible?
Education export – or global education – has many critics. Exporting education is said to be impossible – even unethical. From our point of view this argument is based on few misconceptions, which I try to tackle in this post.
The education export’s critics’ favorite argument is: “You cannot export Finnish school or Finnish education system to other countries as such.” That’s right! You cannot. Education is always strongly tied with culture and history and you cannot transfer those to other countries.
This does not, however, mean we cannot learn from other education systems and apply their well argued ideas and practices to our own. That’s in fact what Finland has done. Finland has developed its own education system by learning from other countries and applying and developing these ideas further in a unique way.
Another often presented argument against education export is “You cannot distinguish the values from education. Presenting education as a bunch of easily applicable tricks is unethical and false.” Once again, we at Learning Scoop totally agree. That’s why we always showcase Finnish Education system by telling about the Finnish educational mindset: the underlying values and basic principles.
It is impossible to explain Finnish education without telling about the fundamental values: for instance equality and trust. It is unthinkable to introduce Finnish education without explaining its foundation on child-centeredness and scientific findings on learning. Those are issues we passionately want to share with people from other countries.
The third argument against global education is “It’s not our job to tell other countries what they should do.” Indeed! That’s why we never do. We strongly believe that every country should develop their own way in education. It’s not our job to tell other countries what’s good for them. What we can and want to do, nevertheless, is to share the ideas and practices we have found to be most effective in Finland and explain the underlying principles and rationale behind them.
Finland has the best education in the world. For us it would be unethical not to share those ideas and insights we have found to be functioning and successful with the rest of the world. Finland has the best education system in the world, but it’s not perfect. Therefor it’s imperative that also we in Finland keep on learning from other countries and developing our system further.
For us at Learning Scoop Global Education means sharing ideas and good practices. For us it means learning from each other and developing education further – in Finland as well globally.
Ethical and Effective Education Export – Mission Possible.