Danes place a high value on education, with the majority of education being funded by taxes. Even people who have graduated from college enrol in additional classes to expand their professional skills or pursue a hobby. Denmark’s public day-care system begins at age 9, and by the age of four, almost 98% of the children are attending public kindergartens.
Danish pre-schools were first established in the 1820s by a private initiative intended for children whose parents worked outside the home. Between 1850 and 1900, several private institutions opened for only part-time enrolment. Unlike previous schools that were mainly retention centres for working parents and targeted at the children of the more privileged classes, these institutions had pedagogical objectives.
As a result of the social reform of 1933, these institutions received up to 50 per cent of their operational costs from the state. In 1987, the state delegated responsibility for their financial management to municipalities.
Below are some fascinating historical photos of different Danish schools and kindergarten from the 20th Century.