European Research in Entrepreneurship series
Edited by Alain Fayolle and Paula Kyrö
Chapter 9: Advancing Entrepreneurship Education in Finnish Basic Education: The Prospect for Developing Local Curricula
9. Advancing entrepreneurship education in Finnish basic education: the prospects for developing local curricula Jaana Seikkula-Leino INTRODUCTION The strategy of the European Union highlights the importance of the development of an entrepreneurial culture by fostering the right mindset, entrepreneurship skills and awareness of career opportunity. According to the European Union policy, entrepreneurship should be included at all education levels and throughout the common curricula (Commission of the European Communities, 2006). Mainstreaming, the idea that entrepreneurship is embedded in all subjects and pedagogy, not applied as a speciﬁc subject, is still quite rare despite the existing background of policy recommendations. Entrepreneurship education has its roots in business education, and many countries are still focusing on entrepreneurship development at adult education level. Some European countries such as Luxemburg, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Spain, Austria, Denmark and Sweden have also included entrepreneurship education development at other education levels (European Commission, 2002; 2004). Finland in particular has extensively mainstreamed it at all education levels, including primary and secondary education. In Finland the development of entrepreneurship education has been supported administratively. The Ministry of Education announced an initiative entitled ‘The Clariﬁcation and the Action Program of Entrepreneurship Education’ in 2004. Accordingly the Finnish National Board of Education introduced the ‘National Core Curriculum for Basic Education’ in 2004, which includes elements of entrepreneurship education. In Finland this basic education is oﬀered at primary and lower secondary school levels. It is uniform, country-wide, nine-year general education given in comprehensive schools when children are about 7...
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