Instruction preparing for basic education
A child in preparatory instruction is entitled to at least 900 hours of preparatory instruction during the year of pre-primary education, as a rule, 5 hours a day, five days a week. The arrangements are decided on an annual basis.
Preparatory instruction aims to promote the pupil’s proficiency in the Finnish/Swedish language, balanced development and integration into Finnish society. Another aim is to provide the skills needed when moving on to basic education.
The aim of the preparatory instruction in pre-primary education is to continuously and systematically assess the development of language skills and to systematically strengthen the child’s Finnish/Swedish language skills. Particular attention is paid to supporting the development of the child’s bilingual/multicultural identity and strengthening the child’s readiness for school. The working methods used in teaching encourage children from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds to use the language in different activities and integrate them into Finnish culture.
Instruction preparing for basic education may be given to pupils with an immigrant background whose Finnish and Swedish skills and other capabilities are not adequate for studying in pre-primary and basic education groups.
You can apply for preparatory instruction in pre-primary education for your child if your child’s mother tongue is not Finnish. Contact the head of the daycare centre. The personnel at the daycare centre will determine the child’s need for preparatory instruction. If the child’s Finnish language skills or other skills are not sufficient for attending a pre-primary education group, the child is entitled to preparatory instruction during the year of pre-primary education.
The service is free of charge.
Service background and legislation
Instruction preparing immigrants or children with an immigrant background for basic education promotes integration, language proficiency and learning of the content areas of subjects. Potential studies of the pupil’s native language promote learning skills and reinforce cultural identity as well as lay a foundation for learning Finnish and/or Swedish.
For pupils aged 6 to 10 years, a minimum of 900 hours of this instruction is provided, and for pupils older than this, a minimum of 1,000 hours. Pupils participating in the instruction have the right to transfer to basic education even before these hours have been completed if permitted by their skills and capabilities. Municipalities organise instruction preparing immigrants for basic education on a voluntary basis.