Martin believes that every child deserves a good education
and by improving our education system, we can improve the whole society. By teaching subjects in practical mix of real life and empowering good values we can avoid problems related to health, relations, finances, ethics, crime ...

Martin's OWN school years

Martin studied in two different primary schools, then Kuressaare Gymnasium and Estonian Business School (EBS). As some of the lessons felt boring, because the teacher was not able to explain the subject related to real life, then Martin often found additional activities besides official curriculum.

He was active member of student council, organized parties and even published his private newspaper to compete school's official newspaper.

In high-school Martin had organizational behavior lecture given by school director, which was truly inspirational - it was clearly visible that the theory was also in practical use of daily school management. So Martin learned about values & trust, independence & taking responsibility, team work & solving conflicts - important life skills.

Estonian Education Foundation

Estonia's education system is the best in Europe by recent PISA test results from 2018. So we have pretty good foundations, but also multiple challenges:
  • Estonian teachers are among the oldest within OECD countries
  • Quality of school leadership (recruitment, goals, culture, community engagement etc)
  • High drop-out rates of youth after the mandatory primary school (9 years); not graduating the next education level due to lack of motivation and getting bored from traditional lessons
  • The low levels of STEAM skills acquired from school.
That's why Martin and Taavet (from Transferwise) co-founded philanthropy fund in late 2018 to address those issues via seed funding 10 new ambitious education initiatives in Estonia over the next 3 years. I am truly grateful that 30+ other startup founders joined us with their donations and we finally raised over 1 million Euros. During first year of 2019 Education Foundation received 100+ projects and we funded 5 of them.

We run the fund as a startup, we learn and improve every day. We have shared our vision and fund-raise experience with other countries considering similar initiatives.