Special Education and Special Support in Basic Education

Pupils in basic education have the right to receive special education or other means of support when it’s required because of for example an illness, injury, learning difficulties or difficulties in adapting.

Special support consists of special education and other means of support needed by the pupil. Special education is primarily pedagogical, that is, support for learning. Other means of support may consist of support to school attendance, and pedagogical support. Together, they are used to support the pupil as a whole. Pupils in need of support are to receive it without delay. An administrative decision is necessary before special support can be granted.

If the pupil has fallen behind in school work because of temporary reasons, or the need for help arises only for a short time, the pupil has the right to receive remedial instruction.

Pupils who experience difficulties in learning or school attendance may be granted special education. It can be arranged either in a special group or in a special class. Learning goals and educational contents in basic education can be individualized in cases where the pupil is unable to complete the basic education syllabus. Underlying reasons for this may be for example the pupil's disability or disease, delayed development, emotional problems, or other similar reasons. Individualization should be an option only in cases where the pupil is unable to pass the syllabus in one or more school subjects. Prior to individualization, subject goals and contents should be streamed according to focus areas.

To whom and on what terms

A pupil may receive special needs education or other special support if this is required because of learning difficulties, an adaptation disorder, a disability or an illness.

Basic information and legislation

Special support comprises special needs education and the support required by the pupil. Special needs education is predominantly pedagogical meaning it provides help for learning. Other support can include school attendance support as well as pedagogical support. These form an entity that supports the pupil. If necessary, a pupil must receive support without delay. An administrative decision is needed to provide special support.

If the pupil has been temporarily left behind in his or studies or otherwise needs short-term support, he or she is entitled to remedial teaching.

In case of learning difficulties or an adjustment disorder, a pupil may receive special needs education, which may be provided in connection with other school work or, for example, in a special class. The learning outcomes and contents of basic education may be individualised if the pupil cannot cope with the basic education syllabus because of a disability, an illness, delayed development, an emotional disturbance or other similar reason. Individualisation should only be utilised if a pupil cannot acceptably complete the syllabus in the given subject. Before this, the subject's objectives and contents should be specified by area of focus.