An overall picture of the effects of exceptional circumstances on education
The nationwide study examines how the COVID-19 situation has affected children’s education, the work of all those involved in school-related activities and the well-being of families. The aims of the study are to provide an overall picture of the impact of exceptional circumstances on school attendance and to collect information in preparation for the next school year.
“From the perspective of teachers’ work, we are looking at the collective practices in schools: how teachers work was supported by principals and other teachers. Further, we are interested in knowing what kind of lessons for the future can be learned from this exceptional spring semester,” explain Professor Risto Hotulainen and Postdoctoral Researcher Raisa Ahtiainen from the Centre for Educational Assessment at the University of Helsinki.
“The Finnish school system is strongly based on the principle of equality in education. However, achieving equality in education during exceptional circumstances has not been self-evident. For example, teaching arrangements and availability of digital devices used for learning (e.g. personal laptops) have varied from school to school, so some arrangements have required more work and financial resources from families,” states Mari-Pauliina Vainikainen, Associate Professor, leader of the Research Group for Education, Assessment and Learning at Tampere University.