Ny Nordisk Skole: Uddannelsesrevolution eller varm luft?

Nina Nielsen & Mette Hunsdahl

Student thesis: Master executive thesis


This master asks the question whether New Nordic School is an indication on that there is a new management paradigm on the way to the public school? New Nordic School is a two-year development project which is developed and launched by the Child and Education Minister Christine Antorini in the spring of 2012. The Minis-ter's starting point has been that too few young people complete a youth (upper sec-ondary) education in Denmark, and her suggestion for a solution to the problem is de-scribed in New Nordic School, which focuses on children and youth’s learning from 0-18 years. The project identifies the professional teachers and educators as agents of change. The Minister expresses that the school can only be changed from within, and she invites all professionals to join the project. It is voluntarily to join the project, but there is a re-quirement that the individual institution is in consensus about the connection, and the requirement of working in networks across institutions. The study is based on data material downloaded from the website of the Ministry of Youth and Education and is also based on interviews with key people in the project. Our study is divided into three sub-analyzes: The first sub-analysis deals with hedging New Nordic School as a phenomenon. Here we show how New Nordic Schools draw on both the Nordic and the Danish school tradition, but also how it draws on inspiration from Ontario in Canada. At the same time, we try to identify what is the "new" in New Nordic School. The conclusion of this part can be summarized as follows: New Nordic School lacks concretization, and the consequence is that right now that the project has many meanings added to it. The described sources of inspiration are several places only used in extracts, in which they are taken out of con-text and reused in another in order to create legitimacy for the project, but with the possible outcome that the chosen approaches do not lead to the desired target. The second sub-analysis is dealing with New Nordic School in a paradigm context. Based in Leon Lerborgs paradigm theory, it is here shown how New Nordic School can be un-derstood in a paradigm context. The conclusion of this part says that New Nordic School is a new management approach in primary and lower secondary school, but also that this new approach leans against a professional paradigm. At the same time coupled with new management approaches, where the clear focus on achieving the common objectives are inspired by NPM, but also foster new innovative approaches in the elementary school. The third sub-analysis is dealing with the management task of extending the connection to New Nordic School. We show that the project does not contain a real management point of view, but the respondent leaders perceive New Nordic School as an opportunity and a legitimization of new approaches in management. We conclude, that New Nordic School will require new management approaches and that the project do not contain adequately focus on management efforts, but also that in the municipal management context marked by NPM-control measures, can be strengthened by the cross-pressures that leaders must make within New Nordic School . The Master concludes that New Nordic School cannot currently be taken as an indication that a new management paradigm is on its way. But it can be perceived as something qualitatively new, where we see both a rearticulating of a professional management paradigm but also a qualitative change, which adds a common focus on goal setting and an approach to innovation. The Master describes this movement as a shift of the known paradigms, and in this way concludes that New Nordic School pushes the dominant management paradigms in the school area.

EducationsMaster of Public Governance, (Executive Master Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2012
Number of pages83