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Ribbon HUNDRED 2021
HEI Schools is a preschool concept that brings the excellence of Finnish early childhood education all over the world.

HEI Schools

location_on Helsinki, Finland
HEI Schools is the first comprehensive concept that licenses Finnish early childhood education to international markets through products both physical - HEI Learning Centers - and digital - HEI Schools Teacher Toolkit and Teacher Certificate. All include high-quality learning materials, play-based pedagogy and the best of Finnish design adaptable to any region or country in the world.
Pilvi Torsti, Founder
We will consider our project a success once high standard early childhood education and the HEI Schools concept are accessible to as many families in terms of both cost and physical distance.

Pilvi Torsti, Founder


HundrED has selected this innovation to

HundrED 2021

HundrED 2020

HundrED 2019

Key figures

Innovation Overview

Target Group
3 000
6 660
Updated on May 21st, 2022
about the innovation

Bringing the Finnish preschool model to the whole world

HEI Schools was co-founded by the University of Helsinki with experienced educational & design experts in Finland to address the increasing global demand for high-quality early childhood education (ECE).

The HEI Schools ECE model is derived from the research-based Finnish educational approach and it works in collaboration with researchers from University of Helsinki, its academic partner. The HEI approach includes excellent curriculum and high-quality teacher training,  which are the cornerstones of Finland's academic success. 

These building blocks are accessed differently through our 3 available products: HEI Schools Learning Center, HEI Schools Teacher Toolkit and HEI Schools Teacher Diploma. Learning Centers are physical spaces located around the world supported by Nordic space design, carefully selected learning materials, an international community, and operational support for the local partner. The  Teacher Toolkit and Diploma bring Finnish know-how online with easy-to-use platforms, virtual communities and monthly webinars to support teachers everywhere.

The pedagogical perspective of HEI Schools is based on decades of academic research on how children learn and how teachers are educated, and ongoing research work is consistently incorporated into our offerings with the help of the University of Helsinki. This is integral to the success of our cutting-edge products.

Embracing Nordic values of accessibility and openness, the HEI Schools mission is to make high-quality Finnish early childhood education available globally for children, teachers, parents and operators. At HEI Schools, we feed creative minds and raise children who will not only adapt to the changing world but change the world themselves!


HundrED Academy Review

The HEI School is providing a holistic and high-quality approach to the early education. The team is super professional and open to sharing their knowledge and providing support all over the world.

- HundrED Academy Member

We all know how early education is important and HEI School is giving the best in this field.

- HundrED Academy Member
Hei Schools gives children the needed tools to discover, feed curiosity and develop self-confidence. They are actively scaling and have rapidly reached 21 countries in recent years.
Academy review results
High Impact
Low Scalability
High Impact
High Scalability
Low Impact
Low Scalability
Low Impact
High Scalability
Read more about our selection process

See this innovation in action


Achievements & Awards

May 2022
HEI Schools was awarded with Fennia Design Prize Grand Prix
November 2020
HundrED 2021
May 2019
HEI Schools was awarded in Fast Company World Changing Ideas 2019
April 2019
HEI Schools Grand Prix at "Vuo­den hui­put - best Finnish cre­at­ive design" competition
April 2019
HEI Schools in CNN
November 2018
HundrED 2019
September 2018
Innovation page created on

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Inspired to implement this? Here's how...

Sign a contract to become a HEI Licensee
Please be in touch with us for more information and pricing on the HEI Schools concept. We will go through the HEI model in detail, possibly meet in person and visit our preschool/kindergarten and agree on the region where you would like to become the licensee before signing an agreement together.
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Participate in HEI Management Training
After signing the contract, we will craft a project plan together. We will then invite your management and pedagogical leadership team for a management training period in Helsinki, Finland.
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Hire your local HEI Team
After going through the HEI Management Training in Finland and understanding what kind of teams are needed in each location, the local management team will need to hire local teachers. HEI Schools in Helsinki will also send HEI mentor teachers for support to your local HEI Schools.
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Train local HEI Schools teachers
Once you have the team in place, your pedagogical management will train the local HEI Schools teachers as they have received training at HEI headquarters in Helsinki earlier. The HEI Schools mentor teachers will also help in practice for a 2 month period at the local HEI Schools.
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Implement marketing locally
The local management will have received training and guidelines in branding and marketing in the HEI way during HEI Management Training. The local team will be responsible for creating and implementing marketing plans. The HEI headquarters in Helsinki will continue to give operational support.
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Prepare HEI Creative Learning Space
After finding the premises, HEI HQ with Finnish architects and the local team with local architects will coordinate the renovation of the learning space together. The HEI local team is responsible for the construction work and will follow the local regulations and HEI Space design guidelines.
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