Primary school children at a Danish school will no longer be attending a Christmas church service, in a move that has prompted criticism from Denmark’s Prime Minister.
Headteacher Marianne Vederso Schmidt of Gribskolen school in Graested, claimed the decision was taken because the school has “children who are not Protestant”.
The school was branded hypocritical as it has previously marked an event called ‘Syria Week’, in which children immersed themselves in Middle Eastern culture.
Concerned parents expressed alarm, with one mother saying that such church services “are a fundamental part of Christmas”.
Leading Danish politicians have also spoken out against the school’s decision.
The Prime Minister of Denmark, Lars Lokke Rasmussen, who attended the school in his youth, has called for a “re-do” of the move.
And the Minister of Health Ellen Trane Norby said: “Danish primary schools have a duty to spread education – and teaching the cultural values and knowledge connected to Christmas is an essential part of that.”
The Mayor of Graested, Kim Valentin, has also called on the school to reverse its decision.
Ole Backer-Mogensen, the cleric who was due to lead the service, said he is afraid that Christmas is being drained of its deeper meaning.
The school called an emergency board meeting to further discuss the issue.