Juhlat Irikselle - Celebration for Iris
Yesterday, 5 May 2018, was a special occasion for the Manchester Finnish School, as we witnessed and celebrated the award of the Knight of the Order of the Lion of Finland to our most honoured member, Iris Mclintock.
This richly deserved award is a reflection of the part Iris played in the foundation of the Suomikoulu in Manchester, the leadership and inspiration she has provided in the school and also among Finns in Manchester and beyond; and last but not least, her astonishingly long career teaching students of the Finnish language.
The honours were performed by Chris Rostron, the Honorary Consul of Finland in Manchester, himself one of Iris's former students.
We had a lot of visitors! Not only did some of Iris's family come to celebrate with us, but also many former students. I think we ran out of cake at one point...! But not coffee, of course.
And very special mention must be made of the beautiful music played and sung by the musical group, The Sound of Finland, consisting of singers Stella Tähtinen and Luke Scott, and keyboardist Fruzina Szücs. They are exceptional performers, and brought a highly appropriate touch of class to the occasion.
The award of the medal is a milestone in our story, and is surely a sign that the Manchester Finnish School has been doing good work all this time, as well as being an enjoyable place to come. And enjoyment is the one word all of her students have used, when talking about her teaching. Thank you Iris, you have a unique place in our hearts.