Denmark scraps ‘redistribution’ plan for primary school students 

The Danish government has shelved plans to use a redistribution model to ensure more diversity in primary school classes.

Denmark scraps 'redistribution' plan for primary school students 
The government will not implement a national plan to ensure diversity in primary school classrooms by redistributing placement of children. Photo: Signe Goldmann/Ritzau Scanpix

Plans to redistribute Denmark’s primary school students to ensure a more “mixed” learning environment have been dropped, the Ministry of Children and Education told newspaper Berlingske

“There are no plans for a state model to control student distribution [at primary schools] like at upper secondary schools [gymnasier],” the ministry said in a written statement.

The minister for schools and education, Pernille Rosenkrantz-Theil, previously suggested that a model for redistribution at primary schools could be presented, mirroring a model put in place for older students at upper secondary schools.

From the next school year, upper secondary school pupils may be assigned a different school based on their parents’ salaries. 

READ MORE: Why Denmark has changed rules for upper secondary school allocation

This will not be the case at primary schools. However, municipalities will be asked to ensure school classes reflect the diversity in their local areas under a clause included in a June 2022 financial agreement between the government and the national municipalities’ organisation, KL.

“We have made an agreement with [municipalities] that they should strive to have a more balance mix of students. The tools individual municipalities use to achieve this should be up to them,” Rosenkrantz-Theil told Berlingske.

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Denmark to reduce school class sizes for small children

The Danish parliament has voted in favour of reducing the maximum class size for the youngest age groups at elementary schools.

Denmark to reduce school class sizes for small children

New classes in grades “0” to 2 (aged 6-8 years) at Denmark’s elementary schools (folkeskoler) will be limited to a maximum of 26 children from next year.

The current limit is 28 students.

The lower limit has been brought in partly to help children with special needs, Minister for Children and Education Pernille Rosenkrantz-Theil told broadcaster DR.

“This will naturally help all children and it will naturally also benefit all children with special needs in particular,” Rosenkrantz-Theil said.

“Those who find it difficult to be included in large parts of elementary school” would benefit most from the change, she said.

Despite the new limit having been adopted by parliament, a maximum of 26 children in a class is not completely guaranteed.

That is because special circumstances can allow exemptions to the rule to be applied, permitting classes of up to – but no more than – 28 children.

The rule change takes effect at the beginning of the next school year.

READ ALSO: Denmark scraps ‘redistribution’ plan for primary school students