Denmark announces plan to aid wellbeing of young people hit by lockdown

Denmark announces plan to aid wellbeing of young people hit by lockdown
Photo: Emil Helms/Ritzau Scanpix
A broad parliamentary majority is in favour of a proposal which sets aside 600 million kroner of spending on wellbeing for children and young people affected by the Covid-19 lockdown and school closures.

The spending could provide for schools to run activities including extra classes, special wellbeing schemes and mentoring.

According to the agreement, schools will have a large degree of freedom in choosing on which measures will be most effective locally.

The political agreement is an effort to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus lockdown and school closures on the wellbeing of young people.

“I sincerely hope that the initiatives we are now presenting will make a difference for our children and young people and make some light and breathing space in a difficult time,” education minister Pernille Rosenkrantz-Theil said in a statement.

Several of parliament’s parties have discussed options relating to special educational or mental health support for children struggling with issues such as anxiety. 44 million kroner of the budgeted money is earmarked for this area.

Other funds are diverted to extra lessons, mentor schemes or intensive classes, and teachers meeting small groups outside.

Children’s rights NGO Børns Vilkår said that it was glad to see action being taken to help children affected by the coronavirus crisis, but sought more focus on wellbeing rather than teaching objectives.

“I’d generally like to welcome the agreement because it is very much needed. But the balance between educational needs and wellbeing is a little off,” the charity’s director Rasmus Kjeldahl.

“I don’t think you can achieve the educational lift without ensuring wellbeing in classrooms,” Kjeldahl added.

READ ALSO: When will Denmark's schools fully reopen?

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