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June 6, 2011

Haven for Persecuted Homeschoolers

By Mary Jack

While homeschooling in Norway is not common, it is growing, especially in the capital, Oslo. The whole enterprise is very much in a state of mutual development with the school authorities and homeschooling families learning from each other constantly. This experience can range from rocky to smooth.

Norwegian homeschoolers have frequent local gatherings, and an annual national gathering. NHUF, the Norwegian Homeschooling Association, provides answers, guidance and assistance, often in consultation with Christian Beck, pro-homeschool researcher at the University of Oslo. We held a Pan-Scandinavian homeschool conference in July 2010 during which the Finnish (Suomen kotiopettajat), Norwegian (NHUF) and Swedish (ROHUS) homeschooling organizations pledged cooperation and support for each other.

Of special interest is the family of His Majesty Crown Prince Håkon. The Norwegian royal family has recently embarked upon several months of extended world travelling during which they will homeschool their children. The purpose of this trip, as stated in the local press, is to have time together as a family, and while traveling, the children will keep up with their lessons at home.

Perhaps the greatest challenge at the moment to homeschoolers in Norway is a desire to support our neighbors in Germany and Sweden who wish to homeschool. Homeschooling is illegal and/or persecuted in both countries. Swedish and German homeschool refugees contact NHUF with requests for information on housing, jobs, etc. Norwegian homeschoolers sympathize with their plight and have provided refuge to numerous families that have fled their native countries.

Mary Jack is the current secretary of Norsk hjemmeundervisningsforbund (NHUF).

 Other Resources

Learn more by visiting HSLDA’s Norway webpage.