Princess Mary and Prince Frederik of Denmark remove their son from an elite boarding school for culture of abuse

Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark have removed their son from their prestigious high school after former students reported that abuse and bullying were rife there.

The royal couple released a statement on Sunday (Danish time) announcing that 16-year-old Prince Christian had left Herlufsholm boarding school and that his sister Princess Isabella would no longer attend as planned.

From left to right, in the background, Prince Christian of Denmark with his father, Crown Prince Frederik, and Crown Princess Mary, born in Australia.  Front row: Prince Vincent, Princess Isabella and Princess Josephine in April 2022.

From left to right, in the background, Prince Christian of Denmark with his father, Crown Prince Frederik, and Crown Princess Mary, born in Australia. Front row: Prince Vincent, Princess Isabella and Princess Josephine in April 2022.Credit:Philip Davali/Ritzau Scanpix via AP

“We are deeply shocked by the reports that have recently emerged about Herlufsholm,” they said. “We have also made it clear that as parents of a child at the school, we expect the school to do what it needs to do to rectify unacceptable conditions.”

The prestigious boarding school favored by the country’s elite came under scrutiny in May with the broadcast of a documentary called The secrets of Herlufsholm (The secrets of Herlufsholm). He detailed allegations of physical violence, including corporal punishment and sexual abuse. Former students described humiliating experiences and a culture of bullying. Some said that older students attacked their younger classmates at night. Others claimed that the school leadership turned a blind eye.

The school principal has since been fired and an independent investigation has been launched. In November, four students were expelled from campus after allegedly participating in bullying and filming incidents.

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark looks on from the stands with her son Prince Christian and her husband Crown Prince Frederik at Euro 2020 at Wembley, London.

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark looks on from the stands with her son Prince Christian and her husband Crown Prince Frederik at Euro 2020 at Wembley, London.Credit:Getty

Then, over the weekend, the entire management of the school resigned in response to a critical preliminary report from Denmark’s education watchdog that threatened to demand that the school return state funds.

Charging

The royal couple cited that particular report to explain their decision to withdraw their children. They noted that, as part of the Danish monarchy, the welfare and education of their children had come under intense public scrutiny when allegations against Herlufsholm surfaced. That “was completely understandable,” the royal couple said, but added that they had tried to make their decision “on an informed basis.” Now we have that base.”

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