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Page:Economic Development in Denmark Before and During the World War.djvu/78

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ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN DENMARK

in education. The high schools before mentioned have demanded and received government support. The elementary schools for the lower classes, which have been public institutions from the start, were at first supported largely by the municipalities, but recently they too have demanded and received government support. Those for the upper classes were to a great extent started by private individuals. Preparation of pupils for the university was often given by private schools, but gradually this state of affairs became untenable. It was difficult for the private schools to obtain sufficient patronage to pay the salaries of their teachers, unless they were content to cater exclusively for the 'upper ten'. The secondary schools of Copenhagen therefore formed an association which undertook to reduce the former disastrous competition. This prepared the way for a claim to government and municipal support; and at last the decisive step was taken the taking over by the state and the municipality of most of the secondary schools. The guaranty that the parents should have a voice in the education of their children lay in the Councils of Parents, which, like the councils of the Friendly Societies and other institutions, insured protection against arbitrary control by the state and municipality.

Further Development of Social Legislation

A few more institutions of very great importance for the promotion of social welfare in Denmark may be mentioned. Conflicts between labour and capital occur in Denmark, just as they do in all other civilized countries, and many times it has been suggested that they be suppressed by the state in order to maintain the social peace. But the introduction of compulsory arbitration and similar measures has rarely been looked upon with favour by either of the opposing parties. Possessed of a solid organization and enjoying that government recognition, so often mentioned, which places the control of many of their affairs in their own hands, they feel, like states within the state, that they are better able than