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Coordinates: 59°18′47.119″N 18°4′1.436″E / 59.31308861°N 18.06706556°E / 59.31308861; 18.06706556 Egalia is a preschool located in Södermalm, a borough of the Swedish capital of Stockholm.[1] As is the case with every Swedish pre-school, Egalia is funded with municipal money. The school is funded and directed by Lotta Rajalin.[1] The school opened in 2010 and serves children from ages 1 to 6.[2]


Egalia is an offshoot of Nicolaigarden, a preschool that has 115 pupils. Three teachers from Nicolaigarden started Egalia in 2010 as a result of the success of the larger school.[3]

Policy on gendered pronouns[edit]

The preschool has received attention for its refusal to use the terms "him" and "her" and encouraging the children to say "friend" or to use the gender-neutral pronoun hen instead.

The idea of the gender-neutral pronoun came from Finnish (about 5% of the population of Sweden is Finnish-speakers). Since Finnish completely lacks grammatical gender, has no way (and no need) to express gender with pronouns. In Swedish, han means he and hon means she – but the Finns ab ovo use the gender-neutral personal pronoun hän, which means both he or she.

The school has avoided books that have gender-specific roles and definitions. Nearly all of the books that the school uses for teaching deal with gay couples, single parents or adopted children.[4][5]


  1. ^ a b Hebblethwaite, Cordelia. "Sweden's 'gender-neutral' pre-school". BBC. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  2. ^ Soffel, Jenny. "Gender Bias Fought at Egalia Preschool in Stockholm, Sweden". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  3. ^ Tagliabue, John. "Swedish School's Big Lesson Begins with Dropping Personal Pronouns". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  4. ^ Soffel, Jenny. "'Gender-neutral' pre-school accused of mind control". The Independent. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  5. ^ Tagliabue, John (12 November 2012). "Swedish School's Big Lesson Begins with Dropping Personal Pronouns". The New York Times.

External links[edit]