Presentations about TAMK’s international collaborations, the Finnish education system, modern digital competencies and educational leadership and quality of pre-basic and basic education sparked the delegation’s interest in exploring a collaboration between TAMK and Lincoln Academy.
The purpose of the visit
The visitors were interested in the Finnish school system and pedagogical methods. They also wanted a mentoring programme to guide the educational transformation process Lincoln Academy intends to achieve in their institution. After the Educational Leadership Forum, TAMK and Lincoln International Academy discussed in several online meetings to design a customised programme that could best achieve their goals.
The expert mentoring and sparring for the change process with TAMK programme covered the topics of Finnish early childhood education and care and the cornerstones of Finnish education system and basic education.
During the intensive week in Tampere the participants deepened their knowledge about Finnish education, reflected on their role as educational leaders and learnt about how to motivate both personnel and students.
The intensive week programme included two full-day school visits to Vuores Primary School and Tesoma Primary School. The schools’ principals and teachers gave the participants a tour of the school and answered all their questions. The guests also had the opportunity to observe real classes in different courses where they could see firsthand what they had learnt in the online seminars and in the theory sessions and workshops of the intensive week at TAMK. These visits were the highlight of the programme for the participants, in Magdalena Acuña’s, High School’s Principal for 7th to 12th grade, words:
I am very impressed with the school facilities and how the teachers get to do “real magic” with the kids. How happy the kids are while learning! We hope we can bring all these amazing experiences back to our country. The good light, the well-regulated temperature, taking the shoes off… all these conveys the importance of feeling comfortable in the school.
I have been surprised how the school cares about the teachers and the importance of them being comfortable and feeling secure. The teachers’ lounge, the wonderful kitchen, the phone booth… it seems so obvious when you see it but we wouldn’t have considered it before, and privacy is something very necessary. I think that makes teachers feel very valued and appreciated and it sends the message to the whole community that the teachers are very important to us and that helps parents and students show the same respect in other ways.
The importance of cooperation
This collaboration is very valuable to TAMK as it broadened our understanding of the Chilean private education sector, as well as provided a clear reference case of collaboration in the private basic education field in Latin America.
We have already agreed that the programme with Lincoln International Academy will continue in 2023 with another six online mentoring sessions on educational leadership held by dr. Riitta Juusenaho. We hope to continue training their teachers, which will contribute to their own objective of achieving an educational transformation in their schools by impacting those staff which work closely with the children.
Text: Marta Gil-Carcedo Cabezon
Picture: Renata Brito