The programme of the new government appointed in June 2019 is called ‘Inclusive and competent Finland – a socially, economically and ecologically sustainable society’. Investments in education and competences are central to the programme.
The programme aims to increase the number of people completing upper secondary education, including VET, and improve outreach. Measures include:
- raising the minimum school leaving age to 18;
- free upper secondary education to avoid VET dropouts due to related costs;
- a range of study and support options for completing compulsory education, such as voluntary additional comprehensive school education, folk high schools, workshops, rehabilitation and preparatory education;
- more and better guidance for learners.
The programme also plans to increase financial resources for VET provision, including:
- additional EUR 20 million for VET providers to hire around 300-400 new teachers and trainers in 2019. A total of EUR 235 million has been earmarked for this purpose in the next five years;
- a new implementing model for learning hours per day and per week, including workplace learning and innovative local solutions;
- evidence-based measures to improve the quality of VET, and address teachers’ working conditions and young people’s wellbeing.
Digitalisation and promoting continuing learning both in the education sector and in the workplace are at the forefront as well. Related measures include:
- the reform of continuing learning to respond to the lifelong need for upskilling and reskilling, including links between the provision, funding, social security and recognition of prior learning;
- promoting in-service and specialist training at work and strengthening the role of apprenticeship training as a channel for retraining and means of securing one’s first job;
- strengthening the role of workplace trainers.
Inclusive and competent Finland – a socially, economically and ecologically sustainable society’ programme 2019-23
Lisätalousarvio: 20 miljoonaa euroa ammatillisen koulutuksen opettajien palkkaukseen ja opetuksen tukitoimiin [Supplementary budget: EUR 20 million for hiring VET teachers and educational support]