Our Passionate Experts Behind FinlandWay®

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

FinlandWay® 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 the FinlandWay® Team

Management & Board

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.

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.

John Bentley


John supports and advises the FinlandWay management team, drawing on his previous experience across multiple sectors. As CEO of Inspiring Learning, John worked with over 200,000 students from 3,500 schools each year. During his tenure as CEO, Inspiring Learning won several industry awards, launched the first British Summer Camp in China and delivered substantial growth.

FinlandWay® Team

Marika Poutiainen

Head of Operations

Marika is in charge of running daily operations and development projects at the FinlandWay® headquarters and making sure that the team members have the best opportunity to achieve their personal and customers’ goals. Marika can make everyone feel included and appreciated. In FinlandWay® she is excited about the possibility of constantly creating new and she thinks that challenges make the work interesting.

Duong Nghiem


Educated between Europe and Asia, Duong is an international business developer and project manager with experience in cross-cultural management from Vietnam and Finland. His expertise and passions include education project implementation and policy in emerging economies and intercultural communications and system adjustment.

Salla Paananen

Marketing & Branding

Salla works as part of FinlandWay®’s Commercial Team, connecting FinlandWay® with people all over the world. She has versatile international experience from membership-based organisations to finance and loves to solve problems. Her creative mind and positive outlook on life bring new perspectives to business development projects.

Pilvi Lindberg


Pilvi is an innovative and passionate educator with more than 15 years of experience in the Finnish Early Childhood Education. Since the beginning of FinlandWay®’s journey, Pilvi has had a key role in creating the FinlandWay® curriculum.

Laura Ketonen


Laura is the kind of person who enjoys pedagogical problem solving and innovation. She has strong competence in pedagogical mentoring and teacher training. Laura can explain the Finnish pedagogy in a practical way and is here to support our schools with the implementation of the FinlandWay® methodology.

Thi Nghiem


Thi is a junior marketing coordinator specialised in digital marketing and market research with BBA in marketing and communications. She is engaged in supporting FinlandWay® partners with localised marketing solutions and insights from market analysis.

Ximena Malagon

Director, FinlandWay® Colombia

Ximena is an Industrial Engineer with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. She is an Executive with extensive local and international experience in management and finance.

Xiomara Acero

Pedagogy, FinlandWay® Colombia

Xiomara has a degree in Early Childhood Education with a specialisation in Social Management. He has more than 12 years of experience in preschool education in Colombia.

Alex Seijas

Pedagogy, FinlandWay® Colombia

Alex is a much loved teacher at Jardines FinlandWay®, focusing on bilingual virtual learning. She has an energetic personality and keeps children active and enjoying themselves during online classes.

Satu Prittinen


In FinlandWay® Satu uses her knowledge and passion to support our partners. Satu emphasises every child’s right to quality education and special needs are close to her heart. She genuinely believes in lifelong learning. Satu holds two Master’s degrees in early childhood education and social psychology from the University of Helsinki.

Fiina Jaakkola


Fiina is a Finnish preschool teacher and uses her expertise to create pedagogical contents for schools, families and online use alike. Her area of special expertise is multiculturalism and physical wellbeing and activity in early childhood education. Fiina can make any child excited about physical education! She’s also extremely knowledgeable about online / virtual learning and teaching.

FinlandWay® Careers

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

FinlandWay®’s partnerships and credentials

Franchise with us

Are you interested in transforming your existing school into a FinlandWay® School or would you like to talk about franchising with us?

Join FinlandWay

Are you looking for a FinlandWay® School for your child? You can find our current locations below.