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School's out for summer as ceremonies mark end of academic year in Finland

President Sauli Niinistö praised teachers and school staff for continuing to provide education and training to students despite the challenges brought by the Covid pandemic.

About 25,000 students are due to graduate from high school this year. Image: Linda Tammela / Yle

Schools across Finland hosted ceremonies on Saturday to mark the end of the academic year, a tradition that was disrupted in many parts of the country by the Covid pandemic last year and in 2020.

The custom sees hundreds of thousands of children and their families attend special Saturday morning sessions at their schools to celebrate the academic year and the beginning of summer holidays.

Their numbers this year included about 25,000 high school graduates — which is slightly less than last year — while some 61,000 students have now completed their basic, or primary, education.

In a video statement on Twitter, Finland's President Sauli Niinistö thanked the students, teachers and other school staff for the completion of another successful academic year.

He added that teachers and other staff deserve great praise for continuing to provide quality education and training in Finland despite the challenges and restrictions brought by the Covid pandemic.