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Published: 10 June 2009

More students transferred to special education, fewer receive part-time special teaching

In autumn 2008, good eight per cent of comprehensive school students, or 47,300 pupils, had been transferred to special education. Although the total number of pupils attending comprehensive school diminished, the number of transfers to special education went up by 1,200 from the previous year. The number has been growing for more than a decade. Twenty-two per cent of pupils, or 126,300 comprehensive school students, received part-time special teaching during the 2007-2008 academic year. The number of pupils attending part-time special education diminished by 2,400 from the previous academic year. These data derive from Statistics Finland's Education Statistics.

The shares of pupils transferred to special education were highest in the regions of South Karelia and Päijät-Häme while the region of Åland had the smallest share. The share of pupils having received part-time special teaching was highest in the region of Etelä-Savo and again lowest in the region of Åland. The relative number of pupils attending special education diminished most from the previous academic year in the region of Lapland.

In autumn 2008, slightly over one-half of the pupils transferred to special education had been fully or partially integrated into groups attending general education while just under one-half received teaching in special groups in comprehensive schools or in special schools. The organisation of special education varies clearly by area.

In autumn 2007, a total of 15,500 vocational education students, or six per cent of all vocational education students, received special teaching. Approximately one-half of them studied in the field of technology and transport. Nearly 12 per cent of all students attending vocational education aimed at young persons received special teaching. Final data concerning special vocational education in 2008 will become available in December 2009.

Shares of pupils transferred to special education and receiving part-time special education among all comprehensive school pupils 1995-2008, % 1)

1) Comparable data on part-time special education are available for the 2001-2007 period (year 2007 referring to the 2007-2008 academic year). The numbers of pupils transferred to special education and recipients of part-time special education cannot be added together because some of the pupils transferred to special education also receive special teaching part-time.

Source: Education Statistics, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Ms Riikka Rautanen +358 9 1734 2375,

Director in charge: Mr Jari Tarkoma


Tables in databases

Last updated 10.6.2009

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Support for learning [e-publication].
ISSN=1799-1617. 2008. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 8.12.2022].
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