Published September 2, 2011
“Love, compassion and tolerance, these things we celebrate.”
These are the words of hardcore enthusiastic and former I Adapt vocalist Birkir F. Viðarsson. These words could also easily be used to describe the Hjalli model, or Hjallastefnan.
There are many reasons why the Hjalli model is appealing, and there are so many reasons why it works as well as it does—and it does. The first thing that comes to mind, when one wants to describe Hjallastefnan and its schools, is gender segregation. Hjallastefnan promotes a system wherein children work in small, gender-divided groups for the majority of their schoolday.
Using this method, both genders get nourished on their terms and both girls and boys get the freedom to work on honing their full range of good qualities. Stereotypes do not prevail in those circumstances.
Another key element is the fact that everyone at school is required to wear a school uniform, not only the children but also the staff. This makes every child equal to the next and helps avoid bullying at school, but not only that—the individual shines more once not judged by his or her cover.
What might be the most important ingredient in this mixture is respect. Every child is greeted in the morning by faculty and staff, and all communi cations are respectful at all times. As a matter of fact, we begin every school year with these words as our guiding light: “discipline, respect, behaviour, courtesy and manners, and this how we enter winter!”
Bóas Hallgrímsson teaches children at a Hjalli model school when he’s not performing with loud rawk outfit Reykjavík!