Ten years ago — against all odds — Finland was ranked as the world’s top education nation. It was strange because in Finland education is seen as a public good accessible to all free of charge without standardized testing or competitive private schools, says Pasi Sahlberg, author of “ Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn About Educational Change in Finland? and director general of Finland’s Center for International Mobility and Cooperation. When I look around the world, I see competition, choice, and measuring of students and teachers as the main means to improve education. This...

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