Quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) in Finnish compulsory schooling: a national model or just unintended effects of radical decentralisation?

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    Abstract

    This article traces quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) developments in Finnish compulsory schooling. The central question is this: Is there a Finnish model of QAE? We conclude that it may be a rhetorical overstatement to speak about a specific Finnish 'Model' of QAE in a strong sense. However, neither is it valid to conclude that what happens in Finnish QAE merely reflects the unintended effects of radical decentralisation. The Finnish consensus on certain issues in QAE could be characterised as silent, and based on antipathy rather than on conscious and articulated principles. Finnish hostility towards ranking, combined with a bureaucratic tradition and a developmental approach to QAE strengthened by radical municipal autonomy, has constructed two national and local embedded policies that have been rather effective in resisting a trans-national policy of testing and ranking. It is significant, however, that both represent a combination of conscious, unintended and contingent factors.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Education Policy
    Volume24
    Issue number2
    Pages (from-to)163-178
    Number of pages16
    ISSN0268-0939
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2009
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Fields of Science

    • 516 Educational sciences

    Cite this

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    title = "Quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) in Finnish compulsory schooling: a national model or just unintended effects of radical decentralisation?",
    abstract = "This article traces quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) developments in Finnish compulsory schooling. The central question is this: Is there a Finnish model of QAE? We conclude that it may be a rhetorical overstatement to speak about a specific Finnish 'Model' of QAE in a strong sense. However, neither is it valid to conclude that what happens in Finnish QAE merely reflects the unintended effects of radical decentralisation. The Finnish consensus on certain issues in QAE could be characterised as silent, and based on antipathy rather than on conscious and articulated principles. Finnish hostility towards ranking, combined with a bureaucratic tradition and a developmental approach to QAE strengthened by radical municipal autonomy, has constructed two national and local embedded policies that have been rather effective in resisting a trans-national policy of testing and ranking. It is significant, however, that both represent a combination of conscious, unintended and contingent factors.",
    keywords = "516 Educational sciences",
    author = "Hannu Simola and Risto Rinne and Janne Varjo and Hannele Pitk{\"a}nen and Jaakko Kauko",
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    T1 - Quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) in Finnish compulsory schooling

    T2 - a national model or just unintended effects of radical decentralisation?

    AU - Simola, Hannu

    AU - Rinne, Risto

    AU - Varjo, Janne

    AU - Pitkänen, Hannele

    AU - Kauko, Jaakko

    PY - 2009

    Y1 - 2009

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    AB - This article traces quality assurance and evaluation (QAE) developments in Finnish compulsory schooling. The central question is this: Is there a Finnish model of QAE? We conclude that it may be a rhetorical overstatement to speak about a specific Finnish 'Model' of QAE in a strong sense. However, neither is it valid to conclude that what happens in Finnish QAE merely reflects the unintended effects of radical decentralisation. The Finnish consensus on certain issues in QAE could be characterised as silent, and based on antipathy rather than on conscious and articulated principles. Finnish hostility towards ranking, combined with a bureaucratic tradition and a developmental approach to QAE strengthened by radical municipal autonomy, has constructed two national and local embedded policies that have been rather effective in resisting a trans-national policy of testing and ranking. It is significant, however, that both represent a combination of conscious, unintended and contingent factors.

    KW - 516 Educational sciences

    U2 - 10.1080/02680930902733139

    DO - 10.1080/02680930902733139

    M3 - Article

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    JO - Journal of Education Policy

    JF - Journal of Education Policy

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