School and Education in Faroe Islands

Training

Primary school includes seven-year compulsory school (compulsory) and two-year continuing school, which can lead to a tenth school year; the majority of students go nine or ten years. Syllabuses and teaching materials were Danish until the 1930s, but have now been adapted to Faroese conditions. Danish as a language of instruction was abandoned in 1938.

High schools are located in Tórshavn and in Kambsdalur on Eysturoy. Undergraduate education at the university level is provided within a limited number of subjects at Fróðskaparsetur Føroya, the Faroese Academy, which was founded in 1965 and now has university status and fifteen permanent staff of scientific staff, including six professors. In the Faroese language and literature as well as in history and cultural history, the studies can be advanced to a cand.phil.; in other subjects, studies are completed at foreign universities, preferably in Denmark.

For vocational training is well catered for with teacher’s seminar, maritime command schools, fishing industry school, technical schools, trade school and nursing school. The Faroese Folk High School (founded in 1899) has been of great national importance by being the only school where teaching from the start has been conducted entirely in the Faroese language.

Faroe Islands Country Flag

Faroe Islands flag source: Countryaah.com

Economy

The end of the 1990s was characterized by a boom, and in 2002 the Danish contribution to the Faroe Islands economy was reduced from one billion to just over DKK 600 million. This was done on the Faroese initiative. The intention was to initiate a process of financial independence.

The opposition warned that welfare would be threatened if the business cycle reversed, which happened in 2003–2004. Fishing prices on the world market fell while catches fell as a result of some species being over-fished. After that, however, the economy turned upwards again. In 2006, growth was 10 percent and unemployment 2.8 percent. In 2008 and 2009, the Faroe Islands were also hit by the international crisis, and GDP fell. But the year after, the economy turned upwards, mainly thanks to good catches of mackerel and herring.

Almost all exports consist of seafood, and half of the value now consists of high quality farmed salmon. Between 2010 and 2015, growth averaged just over 5 percent per year, and GDP per inhabitant in 2015 was higher than in Denmark. By mid-2016, the economy was about to overheat.

The limited size of the economy and its dependence on fishing and fish prices make it extremely cyclical.