In a time full of increasing nationalism and isolationism, is there anything to be gained by reimagining global education in our schools and exploring educational systems in other countries? This interdisciplinary program will be centered on Finland, which has developed an institutional capacity for educational success, resulting in one of the lowest achievement gaps worldwide.  The project will create a task force of diverse individuals, driven to interrupt our current educational system, which often perpetuates inequalities and builds barriers for marginalized groups. This task force of K-16 educators, administrators, and community-based organization leaders, facilitated by Deborah Jane at the Institute for Global Studies, and Maddy Wegner from the National Youth Leadership Council, will convene before and after a Spring 2020 field study in Finland. From these experiences, participants will develop global lessons, resources for their content areas, and strategies to reduce barriers and increase access for marginalized groups at their own educational institutions.  These resources and strategies will be shared during a 2 day institute June 16-17 for area educators.  University of Minnesota faculty, staff, and both graduate and undergraduate students are strongly encouraged to engage with this task force.

This program is supported by the Title VI National Resource Center at the  Institute for Global Studies, and the College of Liberal Arts Engagement Hub.

Agenda for Field Study
Saturday March 28, 2020.  Arrive in Helsinki and check into Scandic Grand Marina

Sunday March 29, 2020.  Meet up with group to enjoy a city bus tour and welcome lunch and the Loly Sauna

Monday March 30, 2020  Welcome sessions, site visit to Helsinki schools, and tour the Oodi Public Library 

Tuesday March 31, 2020.  Train trip to Jarvenpaa  to visit suburban Finnish schools and meet with physical fitness experts to understand how that fits into the Finnish education system.

Wednesday April 1, 2020.   Helsinki day.  Meeting with Matti Jutil, Senior Officer, Finnish Non-Discrimination Ombudsman.  The task of the Non-Discrimination Ombudsman is to promote equality and to prevent discrimination Finnish equality legislation which requires every school to draft an equality plan and renew it annually.  Site visits to Helsinki schools led by Aiga Elg, a Finnish as a Second Language expert who works with diverse immigrant youth.

Thursday April 2, 2020. Train trip to University of Turku to meet with faculty working on special educational projects.  The project focuses particularly on producing easily approached and practical educational materials for gender and culture sensitive career guidance. The aim is to raise awareness, and to transform the awareness about the gender and culture bias in career guidance into good practices to counteract it. The results of our development work will be disseminated in educational institutions and in guidance services nationally.  In this project, segregation is approached via an intersectional approach, taking into account the people's multiple social differences and how they jointly constitute social positions. Educational and vocational choices differ even based on age, ethnic background and social class. In order to combat segregation, there is a need for a holistic gender and culture sensitive approach to career guidance. 

Visit to Turku Teacher Training College where preservice teachers are trained at Turku based school. 

Friday April 3, 2020  Sightseeing and cultural day in Helsinki (all museums are free)

Saturday April 4, 2020  Depart

Important Dates: 

November 7 (Optional)  Education, Cities, and Society in Finland - an Urban Planner's Point of View 

December 15, 2019 applications due for consideration to the program.

January 16, 2020  (Required) First official meeting of the educators who have been accepted to Interuption, Innovation and Inclusion program.  At this meeting we will be discussing the book.   Finnish Lessons 2.0  What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland?  by Pasi Salberg

January 30, 2020  program fee of $1600 to be paid in full.

March 7,2020  all day Finnish language, culture and history 

March 28-April 4, 2020 field study tour. 

June 16-17, 2020 workshop to share gathered information with area educators

Place: University of Minnesota (virtual meeting attendance possible for January  and March meetings). 

CEUs: 65

Cost: $1600 (includes  international health insurance, daily lodging with own room at Scandic Grand Marina, daily breakfasts, and one welcome lunch, in country travel costs during field study in Finland from March 28-April 4, 2019.  Participants will also be responsible for purchasing their own international air ticket, having a current passport, meal expenses and incidentals during field study.) 

    • Refund policy
      • Full refund if requested by March 1, 2020.
      • $1400 refund if requested between March 2-March 14, 2020.
      • $1000 refund if requested between March 15-28, 2020).

Application deadline:  December 15, 2019 (Participants accepted on rolling basis starting September 15, 2019).  First meeting tentatively scheduled January 16, 2019.  

Fill out application here.  (https://z.umn.edu/igsfieldstudy)   If accepted to program, participants will have till January 30, 2020 to pay the $1600 program fee. 

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