Finland is very different from the United States demographically and geographically. Is it possible to adopt or adapt any of the policies of their educational system?  Explain.

Although, there are several demographic and geographic differences between Finland and the US, there is no wrong in adopting the educational strategies of Finland to serve the educational need of the United States. According to Heritage foundation, Finland has a lower unemployment and a significantly low income inequality as compared to US. This is because they have developed research tool and teaching techniques that yield a positive influence on the overall economy of the country. In Finland, the education system is based on learning by doing strategies unlike US where there is a great influence on theories and exams. In Finland, government pays for the university level study of its citizens. In the US, we can see that there are loans that students acquire and then it poses many difficulties in their future when they have to pay off the loans. I believe US can adopt to the learning by doing teaching techniques and also provide more financially viable opportunities for students at the university level.

Which of the different country’s policies do you believe are most practical and feasible for implementation in the United States?  Explain.

I think that the United States can easily implement the policies of the England and Canada education systems. In the US, we can observe that there are many similarities to the English education system. For example in the US and England, the government does not provide all the financial assistance at university level. It will be easy to adopt the England policies based on the similarities. In Canada, the education policies are focused on improving the level of the public schools so that the students can benefit from it and the parents are feel satisfied about their children’s education. This policy can also be adopted by the US.

According to the authors, “Americans have endorsed the untested and ideologically driven strategy of more markets, more privatization, and more pupils testing as the path to academic achievement. Do you agree with this statement? Explain.

I believe that the author is justified in saying that the American strategy towards academic achievement is untested and ideologically driven. If we look at the European education systems, the education system has the capacity to guide its students in each and every aspect of their educational cycle toward getting a successful completion of their education. Their education system is based on experiential learning rather than the American testing based learning. In America the teachers have less wages and facilities compared to the European countries. American policy makers are more interested in adopting to untested and ideologically driven strategy of more markets, more privatization, and more pupil testing as the path to academic achievement.

What role do you believe grassroots activism will play in reforming the educational policy in the United States?

In any country, there is a need for an organized struggle to influence the policies of the government authorities in order to get them to make changes/improvements based on the public sentiment. In my opinion, in the US, the new wave of different community driven organization are playing an important role in bringing positive changes to the educational policies. These community based organizations not only influence the government, they also help the teachers get their issues addressed by the government. The parents also get to involve more in the education reforms as a result of these organized activities by the community based organizations.

Using what we know from other countries, how can quality teachers be recruited and retained?

There is no doubt that the recruitment and retention of quality teaching staff is the foundation of an efficient education system. We can also not deny that the US education system do not have the systematic structure to recruit and retain quality teaching staff when we have to compare it to other developed countries. I think that US can follow different systematic structural models that are already in action in other developed countries related to teachers. US policy makers need to adopt to a policy where teachers can have benefits at their present school so that they can be retained.