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Testing the Limits of Testing

At the end of April 2022, ERR reported on an incident in an Estonian school where a ninth grade student contacted the nation's Chancellor of Justice, Ülle Madise, about an overabundance of tests. The student's biology teacher had assigned the class a time-sensitive “graded assignment,” during a week where three tests had already been scheduled by other teachers.

Photo by Nguyen Dang Hoang Nhu from

ERR explained that “According to the Ministry of Social Affairs' regulation 'Health protection requirements for school timetables and organization of study,' up to three tests may be scheduled within one week.” The assignment given by the teacher “still fit the criteria of a test” as communicated by Madise.

From one standpoint, this incident reflects positively on the rules and systems that function in Estonia. There is an anonymous way for a student to look after their own rights and wellbeing. The fact that the government and young citizens can have a direct dialogue about daily issues like these shows the government serving its highest purpose.

Backing up Estonia's educational reputation further is its high PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) ranking, a system over...

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