The Finnish Model

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Letter to School Board, with prefacing comments:


Author: Sahila Changebringer

Date 31-May-2010


Prefacing comments:   the BBC link is interesting because just after this clip/report, there's a report on Korea and a piece about Duncan defending the US system... and the arguments about the US having too wide a demographic for this to work are false; what makes it work is the close relationship between teachers/children, the one-on-one attention, and if Finnish children can learn 2 or 3 other languages in their school years, then I think ESL children can learn one (English) well during their time... its not hard, its not expensive - its a matter of will and commitment...


On Mon, May 31, 2010 at 8:56 AM, Sahila ChangeBringer <> wrote:


I request that this message to the Board be included in the record relating to any decisions the Board makes on the tenure of the Superintendent, school and programme changes, curriculum alignment, standardised testing, choice of text books and other teaching materials, and RIFing of teachers, AS PER RCW 28A 645.020



Why do Finnish school children consistently score at the top of international tables for achievement in math and science, yet they don't start school until the age of seven and spend less hours in the classroom each week than their American counterparts?


The answers are quite simple and quite inexpensive and easy to implement...


I would ask you to watch these short videos as you ponder the current and future direction of public education in Seattle...


And I would ask that you have the courage, conviction, integrity and vision to begin doing what is best for our children, rather than what is deemed best for (and dictated by) the various corporatist education reform groups (Broad, Gates, Walton, Milken, Friedman Foundations et al) currently influencing the shape and direction of public education in this country.


If I can be of any assistance as you begin working to do what is best for our children, please feel free to call on me.   I have extensive experience in research, training, change management, project management and communications.  


The Seattle School District also has within its broader community a large number of well qualified, highly invested people to assist you in the process of creating a better educational experience for our children.   I am speaking of the parents who are your constituents.   I would urge the Board to draw on and use that expertise and that goodwill.


Sahila ChangeBringer

member, Seattle Shadow School Board
tel 206 679 1738