Pupils who do not yet possess Finnish or Swedish enough to study the language as their mother tongue may study Finnish or Swedish as a second language.
Studying Finnish or Swedish as a second language is possible for pupils who do not speak Finnish, Swedish or Saami as their mother tongue, or who by some other means have a multilingual background. The syllabus of the teaching subject Finnish/Swedish as a Second Language and Literature has a special goal in supporting the pupils’ multilingual nature, and getting them interested in and giving them tools for a lifelong development of their language skills.
To whom and on what terms
In addition to immigrants, the instruction is also intended for returnees and adopted children who need support in their linguistic development.
Basic information and legislation
Instruction of Finnish of Swedish as a second language may be given to students with an immigrant background whose Finnish or Swedish skills have not reached the native level in all areas of language proficiency. The objectives and contents of the instruction are different from first language instruction. The abbreviation S2/R2 is often used for this instruction.
The objective of the instruction of Finnish or Swedish as a second language is to strengthen the student's plurilingual identity and lay a foundation for functional bilingualism.