News 24.11.2019

HEI Schools to expand in Saudi Arabia

The Finnish educational company to open three Finnish-based schools in the Kingdom: Riyadh in 2020 and Jeddah & Dammam in 2021

Helsinki International Schools (HEI Schools), a Finnish company backed by academics at the University of Helsinki, is expanding in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at full speed. HEI Schools and its Saudi partner, EduGuide for Education and Training, signed two new agreements at the Finnish Embassy in the Saudi capital Riyadh, on Tuesday. The two companies agreed to expand their partnership in Jeddah and Dammam, both slated to open by the end of 2021.

The two companies, HEI Schools and EduGuide have collaborated since 2018 with plans to open the first HEI Schools in the capital, Riyadh, in September 2020. The Riyadh school has been designed by HEI Schools and its Finnish architectural partner, Collaboratorio. The unique building will have capacity for 600 children between the ages of three and fifteen. The K-9 school will start accepting preschool and kindergarten aged children to its school in 2020, for the September start. The primary and intermediate schools will open a year later, in September 2021.

The Jeddah and Dammam schools will also start their operations with preschool and kindergarten first, in 2021. Both schools will expand to primary and intermediate schools a year later, in 2022. HEI Schools will design and build the two schools together with Collaboratorio. EduGuide and its local architecture team will oversee the planning and construction phase. EduGuide will be responsible for operations in all three HEI Schools in Saudi Arabia, while HEI Schools will license its full concept with its pedagogical capabilities and Nordic space design.

"We are excited and privileged to bring high-quality education to children in Saudi Arabia with our Finnish educare model and our partner EduGuide," says HEI Schools CEO, Milla Kokko.

"HEI Schools will be the first Finnish-based school in the country. We are looking forward to offering the people of Saudi Arabia extensive benefits of the HEI pedagogy and curriculum through continued expansion of campuses throughout the Kingdom," adds Mohammad Al-Zahrani, CEO of EduGuide.


HEI Schools (Helsinki International Schools) is an international early childhood education (ECE) concept from Finland, founded in partnership with the University of Helsinki and licensed all over the world. The HEI curriculum is based on the Finnish national curriculum for ECE & care, and latest pedagogical research. The HEI curriculum has been packaged into concrete inspiration packages, ready to be taken all over the world together with extensive teacher training, Nordic space design and operational support. HEI Schools has partners in different parts of the world who operate schools in Australia, China, South Korea, Finland and also soon in Indonesia, Argentina, Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. The company is set to expand all over the world to provide high-quality early childhood education to as many children in the world as possible.

EduGuide for Education and Training is a scholastic, higher education, and professional development company originally founded in 2009. EduGuide, a Saudi company, is a consultancy for well-established institutes of higher education, recruiting qualified international faculty for service at campuses throughout the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In keeping with the company’s vision of offering multiple education, assessment and career-enhancement services, EduGuide is proud to facilitate the introduction of Finnish early childhood education to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia through partnership with HEI Schools.