Icelandic Schools Force Children to Engage in 'Gender Compensation Work'

By —— Bio and Archives--October 11, 2018

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Iceland’s Hjalli schools aim to eliminate “stereotypical gender roles and behaviors.” The model, founded in 1989 by self-described radical feminist Margrét Pála Ólafsdóttir, is thriving. It centers around “gender compensation work” in which boys and girls are separated and forced to perform tasks traditionally associated with the opposite gender. NBC News reports that nine-year-old boys in one Hjalli school, for example, “styled each other’s hair, painted on nail polish or gave each other full-body massages” as part of this curriculum. “The best way to get closer to equality,” Ólafsdóttir says, confusingly, “is to admit the differences.”

Schools that focus on breaking “gender norms” exist around the world. Sweden’s state curriculum, for example, seeks to break children free of “stereotyped gender roles.” But these schools and curricula come out of the feminist assumption that gender itself is a social construct — that without society’s insistence on “gender norms” men and women would be exactly the same. But Hjalli schools, it seems, are different. Ólafsdóttir’s premise is not that there is no such thing as gender. She recognizes that girls possess “sensitivity and caring natures” while boys exhibit “strength and power,” she just seems to think they shouldn’t.—MORE…



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