Information in the menus below was updated in October 2019. To contribute information that may be of interest to others in your country, please contact your country’s hosts: Katarina Alanko ( or Johanna Sergejeff ( As the International Network for School Attendance grows, materials will be added to your country’s webpage. 

People, groups, and organizations

Not for profit

  • A National Theme Group for School Refusal started operation in October 2018. The focus of the group is to arrange annual meetings and seminars around the subject and to gather information about good practices in Finland and also abroad. The Theme Group is one of the functions of the VIP Network which is a national programme aimed at improving methods for students who need intensive multi-professional care and rehabilitation. The VIP Network is part of the current joint development work under the Finnish National Board of Education (NA) and the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture. To find out more about the Theme Group please contact Johanna Sergejeff
  • A collegial body of multiprofessional researchers is starting it’s meetings in the Autumn of 2019 under the National Theme Group for School Refusal. The purpose of this group is to gather together researches from different scientific fields to share their findings and to contribute to the understanding of this phemomena. For more information contact:
  • An informal network for school and social work professionals, as well as researchers, started in 2017 in the larger Helsinki-area. Meetings are organized every trimester. New methods, knowledge, and ideas are discussed at the meetings. For more information contact: Katarina Alanko
  • The National top project to enhance services for children and families, LAPE, included working groups for the development and implementation of methods to measure school absence and to work with school absenteeism. For more information contact: Marjaana Karjalainen

Current and upcoming activities and achievements

  • 2020 January 30: A one day seminar and workshop about School refusal and the Hemmasittarmodellen-intervention model. Organized in Helsinki, by Magelungen and Åbo Akademi/Katarina Alanko.
  • 2020 March 25: A seminar in Helsinki on school refusal, which is hosted by the Theme Group of the VIP Network.
  • 2019 December: The publication of a book concerning school refusing students, by Valteri (ed.
  • 2019 November 26: A conference about school non-attendance in Jyväskylä
  • 2019 November: The publication of a book about the Hemmasittare programme in Finnish.

Past activities and achievements

  • 2019 April: Valteri Centre for Learning and Consulting and the Finnish National Board of Education are organizing a national congress on school support titled ‘Does School Belong to Everybody?’
  • 2019 March 27: A seminar in Helsinki on school refusal, which is hosted by the Theme Group of the VIP Network. For more information contact:
  • 2019 March 28: An event in Helsinki for networking and sharing good practises; several communities were granted by the Board of Education to develop approaches to school attendance problems. For more information contact:
  • 2018 November: A series of seminars under the heading “Superpowers of the Mind” toured Finland. These seminars focused on student mental health and ways to support children in challenging situations. It served as in-service training for multi-professional members of school personnel. The seminars were organized through a project with Valteri coordination and more information can be obtained from Johanna Sergejeff
  • 2018 October: The Helsinki capital area for LAPE (National Programme to Address Child and Family Services) hosted a seminar titled “Back to School”. Dr Anne Marie Albano from Columbia University in New York (USA) gave a lecture on “When Children Refuse School”. For more information contact Leena Männistö
  • 2018 September: Valteri and Åbo Akademi University, Finland, hosted a meeting around the Hemmasittare project (a project for youth not attending school) which is from Sweden. The intervention model was introduced and its possible adaptation to Finland was discussed. For more information contact Katarina Alanko

Helpful links and other resources

  • A small guide about school refusal is available here. It will be available also in Swedish and English in the Autumn of 2019.
  • The Finnish translation of the adapted School Refusal Assessment Scale – Revised (SRAS-R) is available via For more information contact Marjaana Karjalainen
  • The Inventory of School Attendance Problems (ISAP) by Dr. Martin Knollmann has been translated into Finnish and will be piloted in Autumn of 2019. The ISAP assesses both the quality and the function of a broad spectrum of school attendance problems. For more information contact Johanna Sergejeff
  • There is an ongoing study on Tuuve online teaching method for students with severe school attendance problems, in collaboration between the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, and the University of Stavanger, Norway. For more information contact Tuomo Virtanen
  • A study about etiology and associations of shool non-attendance, as well as measurement instruments used for assessing school non-attendance (ISAP, SNACK, SRAS-R) have started in august 2019 at Åbo Akademi University. For more information contact Katarina Alanko
  • Find information about ‘Support for learning and school attendance’, via the Valteri Centre for Learning and Consulting

Disclaimer: INSA’s Mission encourages us to disseminate as much readily available information as possible, without judgement. The sharing of this information should not be seen as an endorsement by INSA. People, groups, and organisations are separated into ‘for profit’ (fees are charged for services) and ‘not for profit’ (including charities, who may charge no fees or nominal fees for services). Please access and use this information with proper judgement.

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