Officials looking for answers to Finland's success in education say a major factor is the country's high-quality teachers. Teachers undergo intensive training that focuses on the theory and practice of teaching. In terms of education improvement, "there's a globalism in the perspective of ... the high-achieving countries, [and] they're all talking about each other," says Linda Darling-Hammond, an education professor at California's Stanford University. "It's an important change that there's some interest in that now [in the U.S.]."

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