The Finland Phenomenon


Students in Finland have consistently ranked the best in the world in math, science and literacy for over a decade. Yet, the rest of Scandinavia is not even in the top 10. And students in the United States fall below more than 20 other developed nations. The puzzle is, why is Finland so good? And the question for Americans is, what can be learned from their example? Documentary filmmaker, Robert A. Compton, along with Harvard University researcher, Dr. Tony Wagner, traveled to Finland to find out. The result of their research is captured in a new film, “The Finland Phenomenon: Inside the World’s Most Surprising School System.” In this 60-minute film, Dr. Wagner guides the viewer through an inside look at the world’s finest secondary education system. A life-long educator and author of the best-selling books “Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World” and “The Global Achievement Gap,” Dr. Wagner is uniquely qualified to explore and explain Finland’s success. From within classrooms and through interviews with students, teachers, parents, administrators and government officials, Dr. Wagner reveals the surprising factors accounting for Finland’s rank as the #1 education system in the world. Robert A. Compton has produced over a dozen documentaries, three of which have been selected to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. His credits include the Sundance 2014 Grand Jury Prize winner “Rich Hill” and the 2015 Oscar-nominated “Cartel Land.”