What is a Folk High School?

The question “what is a Folk High School?” is very difficult to answer.

Most importantly, it has nothing to do with High Schools as we know them from America. In fact, a Folk High School is probably unlike any kind of school you have ever encountered.

The basic definition

First and foremost, a Folk High School is a private boarding school for young adults. This means that as a student you live, eat, and take classes here. Because it is private you also have to pay for classes, accommodation, meals, etc.

Secondly, a Folk High School is a school without any exams, tests, or official curriculum. This means that as a student at a Folk High School you don´t get grades of any kind, nor are there any subjects that a Folk High School have to offer. Each Folk High School offers a unique collection of classes that reflect that school´s individual needs and priorities.

Some Folk High Schools specializes in sports, some in journalism, some in psychology or literature. Some Folk High Schools are based on a religious believe system, some are secularized.

What is Odder Folk High School all about?

Odder Folk High School is a secularized school without any unilateral religious or political orientation. We are not specialized either but offer a wide range of generally educating classes and subjects.

In fact, we have about 80 different subjects that you can choose from freely. At Odder Folk High School, you can choose subjects such as Journalism, Acting, Sport & Fitness, Music, Communication, Mindfulness, Art, and much, much more.

Odder Folk High School is not an international school, but we have a strong international profile. This means that each semester we welcome international students from all over the globe. Many of our classes are taught in English and you can expect to improve your English skills considerably while you stay here.

The philosophy behind the Folk High Schools

Folk High Schools are a uniquely Danish phenomenon. In fact, it may be one of the most original educational ideas to ever come out of Denmark.

The first Folk High School was founded in 1844. This means that the Folk High School movement is older than Danish democracy.

The Folk High School movement is founded on the educational philosophy of the Danish theologist, philosopher, politician, and poet N.F.S. Grundtvig (1783-1872). He created the Folk High Schools as an alternative to traditional education. Instead of education based on memorization and book learning, he wanted to teach young adults through conversation and inspiration. The Folk High Schools are not schools for reading dusty books or writing mandatory essays, but schools for talking and thinking in a living and vibrant environment.

The purpose of the Folk High Schools is to enlighten people, to train them for democracy, to transform them into confident and well-rounded people, to educate them for life.

The purpose of a Folk High School is not to ask you “what do you want to become”, but rather “who do you want to become”.

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