Biodiversity in national curriculum

3) The position of environmental education will be strengthened in the imminent overhaul of the national curriculum. In addition, in vocational education, professional skill requirements related to restoring and conserving biodiversity will be strengthened.

Responsible institutions: Ministry of Culture and Education

Schedule: 2013–2015

Status in 2018: 

Early childhood education

The principles of a sustainable lifestyle are recognised and adhered to in the new Foundation of Early Childhood Education so that the social, cultural, economic and ecological dimensions are all taken into account. Early childhood education creates a basis for ecosocial learning so that the individual regards ecological sustainability as a precondition for social sustainability and the realisation of human rights.

General education

Sustainable development or sustainable future is set as the leading societal goal of the foundational document of the national curriculum. It is included both in the value system as well as in, for example, the broad-based know-how and, naturally, also in discipline specific goals.  

Upper secondary education

Sustainable development forms a part of the value system, practice and thematic units of the new Foundation of Upper Secondary Education. It is emphasised specifically in the courses of biology and geography.

Vocational education

Regarding vocational education, sustainable development is one of the key lifelong learning skills that are included in the foundations of all basic vocational diplomas. In addition, the Foundation of Basic Vocational Diplomas, which came into effect on August 1 2015, includes environmental know-how as one of the optional parts of the diploma. One of the goals of this part is that the student is able to function so that biodiversity is maintained.    

Furthermore, know-how of biodiversity is included in the curricula of some vocational study programmes, for example in the Vocational Upper Secondary Qualification in Natural and Environmental Protection, in the Vocational Upper Secondary Qualification in Agriculture and Forestry, in the Specialist Qualification in Forestry, and also in the Specialist Qualification for Nature Surveyors.

Further information: Curricula and qualifications can be found at the website of the The Finnish National Agency for Education