Espoo Funerary Chapel
The Helsinki Finnish Co-educational School SYK was founded in 1886, and it was the first Finnish-language co-educational school. This progressive, pioneering spirit lived on, and in 1955 it became an experimental 10-grade school when preparing the new comprehensive school system (legislation 1965, implementation 1972–1977). The SYK was the first school building that was planned for the needs of a comprehensive school system and even a pioneering example of the open space school design.
Architects Kaija and Heikki Siren designed the building, and it was completed in 1972, just when the implementation of the comprehensive school system began in Finland.
The SYK is one of the most well preserved Brutalist school buildings in Finland apart from the Roihuvuori School designed by Aarno Ruusuvuori. The focal feature in the building is its entrance hall in the middle of the building. The main staircase and school cafeteria are both situated in it, and the auditorium with 600 seats is in the middle of the entrance hall.
The classrooms and other spaces are organised on two floors around the hall. The gymnasium with a swimming hall is in a separate building, also designed by the Sirens. The ‘Sports House’ is situated in the same plot. The school was planned for 1100 pupils.