The Bernadotte School - Denmark

 

Bernadotte School was opened in 1949 by a group of parents who were motivated by the same ideas which oed to the establishment of the United Nations the prevention of future conflict by the promotion of international understanding.

Educationally, the school had very clear aims from the beginning: a desire to brak away from the rigidity and authoritarianism of traditional schooling, and to put into practice the new ideas of child-centered pedagogy. Though the school has developed and adapted a great deal since those days in response to the varying demands of modern society, the guiding principles have held fast and still help to create a learning environment which we feel is very special: an environment which both students and teachers enjoy because everyone can contribute to it in their own way.

We are a Danish school with an international, English-speaking section TLH.

The Scandinavian tradition of openness, tolerance and freedom of mind shows also in its educational systems. Knowledge and learning are seen as tools which enhance the individual's understanding and appreciation of life, rather than being a checklist of academic goals which can be pursued in isolation. It is our experience that the skills and strengths which our system fosters stand the student in good stead for any academic study undertaken in later life.

The school is run democratically. Parents, students and teachers all have influence in the running of the school, both on a day-today level, and in liaison with each other.

The school has about 580 students. About 60 teachers employed at our School and 22 pedagogical persons taking care of the children after school. We have 8 technical/administrative employees too. The Danish section offers education from pre-school to 10th grade. The international section of the Bernadotte School offers education from pre-school to 9th grade. 10th grade together.

We place great emphasis on the development of social skills in our children. They are encouraged to solve conflicts through discussions and negotiation. By fostering self-reliance in an atmosphere of cooperation rather than competition, we aim to develop responsible, caring people, with an understanding of human values based on personal experience.

We attach great importance to the value of creative as well as academic skills; creativity, not as a separate entity, but as a way in which one relates to all that one does and a quality which enhances the type of thinking required in learning.