Welcome to Kruses Gymnasium – a private Danish highschool in Farum
There is one common challenge that faces young people today, regardless of their cultural, political, economic or religious background. And that is the growing force of Globalization. For that reason, it is vital that educational institutions around the world cooperate on providing young people with an opportunity to meet other young people across national or cultural boundaries. Even across continents.
At our school, Kruses Gymnasium, we have decided to give highest priority to the development of Global Partnerships with High Schools and Secondary Schools in different parts of the world. For that reason, we have reached out to other schools in several countries, and have succeeded in setting up Exchange Programs in Downingtown, PA, USA, Normandy, France, and Germany.
We remain open to other offers, and dedicated towards seeking new opportunities for even more of our students to experience a foreign culture and country, and a foreign school culture in particular.
This site provides you with information on our school and outline what we look for in terms of an exchange program and a mutual academic partnership – and also what sort of Exchange programs we already have in place.
Our high school
Kruses Gymnasium (High School) has a very high degree of competence in Science, Political Studies and Arts, in a close and positive community, focused on excellence in academics, but also on maintaining a friendly and safe environment for young students. We currently have close to 400 students divided into three separate years (somewhat like sophomores, juniors and seniors in the US). Therefore it is a school with a small but relaxed and positive student body, where everyone knows everyone, and where teachers and management are close to the student community.
Kruses Gymnasium has a tradition of excellence in academic standards and is consistently ranked among the highest nationwide at the final exams. Furthermore, more than 90% of our students go on to attend University or College after leaving us, which is in fact the highest number in Denmark.
A large institution
Kruses Gymnasium is actually part of a larger institution, Marie Kruses School, which also contains a primary, and secondary, school for ages 7-15. The school has a long and illustrious history. It was founded in 1869 by Marie Kruse, a pioneer in women’s education in Denmark. Later on, it was reformed into a mixed-gender school. The school was originally located inside Copenhagen, but was moved to larger, more modern facilities in the suburb of Farum in 1971. Farum is 20 km (12 miles) north of Copenhagen City.
Farum and Copenhagen
Farum is located 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Copenhagen. It is a peaceful and safe suburb with a mixed population, but mainly upper middle class. It is located next to a large and scenic lake, called the Furesø. Public transportation to Copenhagen City is around 40 minutes by light rail.
Copenhagen City (and Greater Copenhagen) offers an abundance of European and Danish culture and many historical sites, and is also home to internationally famous Danish corporations like Novo Nordic and Maersk Line, and it houses the royal family and their palaces as well. The City of Copenhagen is an ancient trading port. It has a very long and colorful history.
Over the last 20 years, the City of Copenhagen has truly flourished. Its economy has grown very strong and it has become a vibrant, very international City. Its great focus on sustainability and bicycling has made it a role model for many other major cities around the world. In London and New York, to “Copenhagenize” means to make room for bicycles and focus on a more eco-friendly great city. The inner city canals have been cleaned up so thoroughly that you can now swim in them and Copenhagen has recently been named the cleanest capital in the world.
The Kingdom of Denmark is part of Scandinavia in Northern Europe, bordering Norway, Sweden and Germany to the south. Denmark’s history revolves around the great belts, or straits, separating the Baltic Sea from the North Sea. Today, it consists of the peninsula of Jutland and 443 islands of many sizes. Farum and Copenhagen are located on the largest of these isles, called Sealand. Also part of the Kingdom are the North Atlantic Faroe Islands and Greenland, home of the American Military base at Thule. And, at least according to the Danes, home of Santa Claus as well.
The Danish population consists of more than 90 % ethnic (Germanic) Danes and less than 10 % immigrants of many different ethnicities. By the autumn of 2018, the population stood at 5,806,015 which is increasing slightly over time, mostly due to immigration.
The official language is Danish, a Germanic/Nordic language, which, in fact, has many similarities to English, due to common ancestry and the Viking impact on the English language. The vast majority of Danes understand English very well and kids are taught English from the start of their schooling, at age 6-7.
Denmark is a Constitutional Monarchy, with the Queen as head of state, but the Royal House is completely non-political. The Prime Minister, currently Mrs. Mette Frederiksen, is the factual leader of the Government.
A rich country
Denmark is considered a fairly rich country, with a gross national product of 203 billion US$. More than 75 % of the population work in the service industry.
85 % of the population belong to the “Folkekirke”, the Evangelical-Lutheran faith, which was originally the only faith allowed and controlled by the King. Membership is optional today but most Danes are still part of it, mostly out of tradition and habit. Marie Kruses School was originally founded on Christian values but is a secular school today.
Academic options during an exchange program
Possible themes include the Viking Age and the Danish Middle Ages, possibly as part of excursions to Frederiksborg castle or Kronborg. It could also be the history of the Danish welfare state and national Health care along with political and Social Studies. Another possibility would be national Identity. Or more general topics like World War ll and the Great depression.
We could work with themes such as national Identity and Immigration or the role of Religion in Danish Society. Of course the Danish welfare system might be interesting for you to study or the role of Denmark in the European union.
Denmark has a very particular sports culture, and we would be happy to introduce your students to it. Danes practice many of the same sports as the rest of the world, but we also have some very popular sports that are relatively unknown to most countries, such as Badminton and Handball. They might prove a fun experience for your students.
Of course, mastering the danish language is a bit ambitious but other foreign students have enjoyed being introduced to Danish literature, either working with world famous danish authors like Kierkegaard, Karen Blixen or H. C. Andersen, whose works have been translated into, or written originally in english. Or with less known Danish authors that may bring insight to Danish culture. We could also work with some of the danish movies that have won international acclaim in recent years, such as the Hunt, Drive, the Celebration or the works of Lars Von trier.
The English faculty would in general function as assistants to the other faculties, to hopefully ensure the complete absence of any language issues. But we could also teach a danish/european angle on any themes or literature you might have worked with beforehand. Danes generally master English at a relatively high level, at least according to our American partners?
Kruses Gymnasium has a very strong Science-profile and Science is taught at a very high level in Danish High Schools. We have very gifted teachers and would be happy to work with your students in this field as well. A particular focus in Denmark now is Bio-technology, but we have all the classical fields of study at our school, from Physics to Geology and Astronomy.
Feel safe in Denmark
Copenhagen is one of the most peaceful major cities in the world and so is Denmark in general, with very low rates of crime and very restrictive gun laws. Public transportation is easily accessed and reliable. In general the transportation system in and around Copenhagen is safe and well planned.
Strictly no Alcohol! Although Denmark allows the purchase of alcohol for kids age 16 and above, we will adopt a strict no-alcohol policy on school and at the families for our foreign students.Every student will stay with a host family and a Danish student, who will be a friend, contact and guide throughout the stay.
Danes in general are reasonably good at speaking English, and you won’t have trouble getting help or advice from most people you meet. Also, the largest minority in Copenhagen is actually British people, so don’t be surprised to hear a lot of English-speaking people in the streets.