The majority of Vantaa youth are satisfied with their lives and almost all of them have a hobby

The majority of Vantaa children and youth are still satisfied with their lives, especially in elementary schools. In puberty, the differences between girls and boys grow, and girls feel less satisfied than boys. Children and the young deem their own state of health slightly worse than before. Vantaa’s results are seen in the National Institute for Health and Welfare’s school health survey 2019 results.

The school health survey was answered by 76% of 4th- and 5th-graders, 61% of 8th- and 9th-graders, around 74% of 1st- and 2nd-highschoolers, and around 18% of students at vocational colleges. The results concerning vocational education shall be viewed with caution, since the response percentage was so low.

More than 60% of the respondents like school attendance. Feelings of bullying have reduced among 8th- and 9th graders and slightly arisen among 4th- and 5th-graders. Students in upper secondary education deem classroom discipline better than in basic education. A quarter of 4th- and 5th-graders deem that it is often peaceful in class.

More and more Vantaa schoolchildren and students do not eat school lunch; the number of girls has increased compared with the previous study. Of Vantaa’s 8th- and 9th-grade boys 62% and 57% of girls do not eat school lunch on a daily basis. Likewise, more children and the young do not eat daily breakfast.

Access to student welfare in Vantaa seems to have become easier. Vantaa children and youth are of the opinion that they receive help and support from student welfare workers as well as teachers. School exhaustion has increased for girls in secondary schools and junior high schools, as has their anxiety. Almost half the girls that responded the survey said that they have been concerned about their mood during the past year.

Almost all Vantaa children and youth engage in a hobby at least once a week. Eighty-nice percent of 4th- and 5th-graders have a weekly hobby, and as many as 97% of high school 1st- and 2nd graders have a weekly hobby.

Nevertheless, less and less elementary school students in Vantaa engage in an hour’s exercise per day, which is the recommendation. Twenty-one percent of secondary school girls and 25% of boys take at least one hour’s exercise per day. Correspondingly, 12% of high school girls and 16% of boys take at least one hour’s exercise per day. The number of those taking very little exercise has increased.

Vantaa youth feel more lonely than before. Especially loneliness experienced by girls has grown from the previous survey. Fewer than before feel that they are an important part of the class or school community. Based on the results, 89% in vocational education have one or more good friends, and as many as 99% of 4th- and 5th-graders feel that way. The young discuss better with their parents than before; this applies to all age groups.

Young people’s binge drinking and smoking have decreased, and more young people than before have a negative attitude toward smoking. Only 3% of high school 1st- and 2nd graders smoke on a daily basis. Experiments with illegal drugs have slightly increased in high schools and vocational institutions. More youth than before deem that it is easy to get drugs in Vantaa. Of the vocational institution students responding to the survey, 69% think it is easy to acquire drugs.

Experiences of sexual harassment are especially common with girls. Forty percent of girls at Vantaa high schools are subjected to sexual insinuations or harassment.

Next, the City of Vantaa will focus on analyzing the results and compiling development measures. In addition, the schools and educational institutions will get unit-specific results for handling and acquiring school-specific information. The City of Vantaa especially focuses on promoting the health and welfare of the young, and increasing physical exercise and meaningful leisure time. Vantaa will inform about the development work to be commenced based on the school health survey in spring 2020.

You can view Vantaa's results online at THL's online result service.

Published: 4.11.2019 
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