The Norwegian royal court announced on Monday that Princess Ingrid Alexandra and Prince Sverre Magnus, who have until now attended the local Jansløkka School near their home Skaugum in Asker, will be enrolled in new schools after the summer holiday.
The Princess will attend Oslo International School, which, despite its name, is not in Oslo, but at Bekkestua in Bærum, while the Prince will become a pupil at the Montessori School in Oslo. In the case of the future monarch, the Palace explains the change by her need to learn to speak, write and think in English from an early age.
The fact that the Princess and the Prince, who have until now attended a public school, will switch to private schools has caused some negative reactions in a country where the overwhelming majority of children attend public schools and private schools are widely seen as rather elitist.
However, those who argue that this constitutes a departure from royal traditions are not quite correct. Before the Second World War, royal children were educated at home, except for a brief spell at Halling's private school for the then Crown Prince Olav. However, during the war the three children of Crown Prince Olav and Crown Princess Märtha attended private schools in the USA, and after their return to Norway Princess Astrid and Princess Ragnhild refused to go back to being educated at home. They, and their brother Prince Harald, were therefore enrolled in public schools - Nissen for the Princesses, Smestad for the Prince, who later went on to Oslo Cathedral School. Crown Prince Haakon and Princess Märtha Louise were also enrolled at Smestad, but later switched to the private Kristelig Gymnasium.