Schools and educational institutes of Helsinki to return to contact teaching

Comprehensive schools, general upper secondary schools and vocational institutions in Helsinki will start their autumn studies as contact teaching. Finnish-language comprehensive schools and upper secondary schools will start on Wednesday 11 August, while Swedish-language comprehensive schools and upper secondary schools will start on Monday 16 August. Helsinki Vocational College and Adult Institute has already started its studies.

“Schools and educational institutions will start their studies as contact teaching. The coronavirus situation did not let up in the summer, so all of our activities will continue to adhere to the health safety practices that were in place last school year and that have already become routine in our activities. This means measures such as maintaining safe distances and good hand hygiene, staggering meal times and using masks in grades six and above,” comments the Deputy Head of Education Division Satu Järvenkallas.

Over the summer, the City has extended its coronavirus vaccination programme to cover all residents aged 16 and older, as well as children and young people aged 12–15 who belong to risk groups.

“The vaccinations are sure to help with the coronavirus situation as we head further into autumn and as the vaccination coverage increases, but we will monitor the situation on a daily basis and are ready to make new arrangements on short notice, such as switching to exceptional teaching arrangements in basic education and upper secondary education. We are able to start the vaccinations in schools also for all pupils and students aged 12–15. In Finnish-language comprehensive schools, vaccinations will start on 12 August and in Swedish-language comprehensive schools on 17 August. We will provide information about the vaccination schedules in individual schools later. We are working in close co-operation with the Social Services and Health Care Division,” Järvenkallas says.

New first graders to start their learning path

A total of 45,000 pupils will be attending basic education at the schools of the City of Helsinki. 27,000 children will be attending early childhood education and pre-primary education. The City’s general upper secondary schools will be attended by more than 9,000 students and Helsinki Vocational College and Adult Institute will be attended by 17,000 students. The courses of the Adult Education Centre and Arbis are attended annually by approximately 100,000 people. The adult education centres will open their course registrations on 16 August.

“This autumn, we have enthusiastic first graders at comprehensive schools, general upper secondary schools and Helsinki Vocational College and Adult Institute. 6,000 pupils will start their basic education in the first grade. Due to the extension of the compulsory education age, the number of new student places was increased in upper secondary education, and the City’s general upper secondary schools continued to be popular in the joint application. The number of people applying for vocational studies at Helsinki Vocational College and Adult Institute as primary applicants increased by 19% from the previous year. I wish you all a pleasant new school year!”