Here is something worth knowing though - "tracking" students into academic sheep and vocational goats:
Expansion of education and changes in the structure of schooling — for instance, a shift toward later tracking — appear to have contributed to increases in intergenerational mobility in Sweden and Finland. On the other hand, in the United States and United Kingdom mobility seems to have stagnated and possibly decreased in recent decades despite educational advance.
It’s worth noting that both Sweden and Finland have (Finland more rigidly than Sweden) have education divided into those academic and vocational streams from 15 onwards. As we know very well, the UK abandoned this (and sure, perhaps 11 was too young to be making the distinction) and the US hasn’t really ever had it.
Here's where I start wondering.... when Finland is compared to other countries, are we comparing the entire Finnish education system (academic and vocational), or are we just looking at the academic side of things?
It would be easy for Finland to top the scores if they'd already screened out all the non-academic plumbers and gasfitters and were only putting the academic-minded kids through the Maths and English exams that make up these international tables.
Just a thought....