Our Passionate Experts Behind FinlandWay®

Our Mission

Our mission is to bring the best of quality education from Finland to thousands of children, families and educators worldwide.

FinlandWay® was co-founded by education experts from the University of Helsinki and emerging markets impact specialists from the World Bank Group. 

We have selected the core elements of Finland’s education excellence and use the latest platforms and delivery models to support our partner schools and families to build better beginnings for lifelong learning. 

Having studied the most impactful, economical and scalable school system models in growth markets and following years of research and system development, we combine the latest scientific understanding of the most efficient pedagogical approaches to support joyful early learning with pragmatic hands-on guidance for educators and parents. We combine our understanding of the demands and challenges of our partner countries with a firm footing in leading research and daily education practices of Finland.

Meet Our FinlandWay® Team

Noora Laitio, FRSA
CEO and Co-Founder

A Cambridge economist and impact investment specialist in emerging economies, Noora has worked for IFC World Bank Group as their Nordic Representative and Western Europe Women’s Representative for Private Sector Projects, the European Investment Bank and in investment banking across five continents.

An independent advisor to the United Nations, European Commission, Cambridge University Sustainability Leadership Institute and the World Economic Forum, she is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Commerce in the United Kingdom and a member of the Finnish Educational Research Association and the Steering Group of Education Finland (dep).

Dr. Jonna Kangas PhD
Education Expert and Co-Founder

A leading internationally published author, editor, speaker and researcher on participatory play-based pedagogy from Finland, Dr. Jonna is a Senior Lecturer and Teacher Training Expert at the University of Helsinki and a Joint Research Member at the Playful Learning Centre research laboratory. Her research has been published by Springer, Elsevier and Sage amongst others.

Dr. Jonna is a Board Member of the Early Education Association of Finland and advises the Finnish National Centre of Educational Assessment and the three capital region municipalities on participatory practices in Finland.

Pilvi Lindberg
Curriculum Design and Pedagogical Practice

A passionate educator, Pilvi has 15 years of practical experience of curriculum design and operations in Finnish kindergartens. She has been actively involved in Education Policy and Children’s Welfare matters at the University of Helsinki, and she is a grantee of the national OKKA Foundation for Teaching, Education and Personal Development backed by the Trade Union of Education in Finland OAJ and the Early Childhood Education Teachers Union in Finland.

Pilvi is an expert of curriculum design and pedagogical practice, and a teacher trainer of FinlandWay International Preschools.

Marika Poutiainen
Head of Operations

Equipped with exceptional project management and organizing skills, Marika is in response for FinlandWay’s customer experience and running office’s daily life in the Helsinki headquarters. With her entrepreneurial attitude she knows how to best help clients to achieve their goals with new business. Marika has background in behavioral consulting, entrepreneurship and leadership and management.

Duong Nghiem
Partnership Development Manager

Educated between Europe and Asia and based in Helsinki and Hanoi, Duong is an expert in cross-cultural management and the Southeast Asian education sector. He represents FinlandWay and manages our partnerships in Asia.

Salla Paananen
Jr. Sales & Marketing Manager

Salla has gained versatile experience in cross-border business, marketing and business development project management during her years spent in Ireland. Her education background is in media & journalism, digital marketing and graphic design. Salla is looking after FinlandWay’s marketing and nurtures new and existing partnerships as well as FinlandWay Family members.

Satu Prittinen
Pedagogical Expert

Satu has a long history of practical work in Finnish kindergartens both as a teacher and as a manager. She has a deep-rooted interest in international work and has also worked with intercountry adoptions. A Master of early childhood education, she is currently finishing her second Master’s degree in the University of Helsinki, majoring in social psychology.  

In FinlandWay Satu is using her expertise to create excellent beginnings for children around the world.

Fiina Jaakkola
Pedagogical Expert

Fiina is passionate about teaching and creating learning opportunities for children. She is a Finnish preschool teacher and has a Master’s degree in early childhood education from the University of Helsinki. She’s specialized in multiculturalism and physical wellbeing and activity in early childhood education. In addition to early childhood education experience, Fiina has 15 years of experience as an instructor in sports.  Fiina is an expert in curriculum design and pedagogical contents at FinlandWay.

Anni Taivainen
Pedagogical Intern

Anni is a Finnish kindergarten teacher and a special education teacher in early childhood education. She is doing her Master’s degree in University of Helsinki majoring in early childhood education. In FinlandWay Anni is doing her three month long internship during the summer of 2020 with the pedagogical team. 

Thi Nghiem
Commercial intern

Studying her BBA degree in Helsinki with a focus on marketing and communication, Thi joined FinlandWay as a commercial intern. She is enthusiastic in marketing operations, supporting local partners, and visual communication design.

FinlandWay® Careers

We are a fast growing startup and continuously looking for new talents. Are you an early childhood education professional with good language skills? Or you might have great organizational skills and eye for business opportunities? Above everything we appreciate customer centric mindset, can-do-attitude and flexibility that working in a small team requires. Contact Marika or Noora for more details.

Contact us

Are you interested in transforming our existing school to FinlandWay® methodology or would you like to talk about potential partnership? Provide us with just a few pieces of information and we will get back to you.
Are you looking for a FinlandWay® School for you child? You can find our current locations here.

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You can also send us an email info@finlandwayschools.com