Kupittaan koulu


VasaramÄKI SCHOOL    (Kupittaa Junior High)


The school was founded in 1956 as a private grammar school. Since 1976 it has belonged to the city of Turku, due to a new era in the Finnish educational system with the introduction of the comprehensive school. The school was built among pine trees on a hill in a residential area of Turku, yet, within a walking distance from the centre and a few minutes walk from both outdoor and indoor sports facilities. The school building consists of two parts, the older from 1957 and the newer from 1962. Kupittaa senior high school works in the same building. Several teachers work in both schools. In Vasaramäki sacool the students are taught during the last three years of their compulsory education and their ages vary from 13 to 16.


Most students speak Finnish as their mother tongue but other languages like Russian, Kurdi, Albanian, Somali, Estonian, Vietnamese, Chinese, Swedish, English, Spanish are spoken in some families. Immigrant students receive some tutoring in their own mother tongue.


Comprehensive schools follow the national curriculum, which means that children in all areas of the country can receive the same amount of lessons, guidance and level of knowledge in the compulsory subjects. These are Finnish, two foreign languages, usually English and Swedish, Mathematics, History, Biology and Geography, Physical Education, Religion, Physics and Chemistry, Art, Music and Home Economics.

During the 8th and 9th school year students take part in optional courses. The total number of lessons a week being 30, the hours for optional subjects amount to 6 or 7 per week. The topics and levels of these courses vary from school to school, depending on the resources of the school, the staff and the profile of the school.

The curriculum of Vasaramäki (before Kupittaa Junior High) offers a wide range of options endeavouring to meet the individual inclinations of pupils and their parents.

The students with an active interest in sports have the possibility of including up to nine hours per week of elective PE in their schedules. The attendance in the sports streams is based on entrance tests held during the 6th school year.

The Finnish education system

The basic compulsory education in Finland is directed at all pupils of the ages 7 to 17 attending comprehensive schools. Schools provide children with teaching, books and other materials, notebooks, pencils and school lunch, and, in some areas school buses, too.

Working life experience

Pupils have a possibility to experience working outside school during a week in their last school year, and during three days in the 8th form. Companies and businesses in the neighbourhood welcome student trainees to get a close look at real-life working situations.

A school day in Kupittaa junior high

A normal school day begins at 8 or 9 sharp. Pupils wait for the teachers in front of the classrooms of their first lessons. When the teacher has unlocked the door, all go in and listen to some aphorisms, instructions or music from the school radio to begin the day with. They have brought their books and pencils with them, having done their homework the previous evening at home.

The lessons last for 45 minutes, then comes the break of 15 minutes, and they go out to the school yard to chat and have some fresh air. The next lesson will take place in some other classroom, with another teacher, maybe in another group of students. All this is carefully timetabled for each student. Lunch break lasts for 30 minutes, from 10.45 till 11.15. After that, there are lessons again. The school day ends at 2 or 3, and the amount of lessons per week is 30, so the average day is 6 hours.

Many pupils have their own hobbies, which they attend to after school, and they also have homework and exams to study for.


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