Why Do the Students Own a Day-Care Center?Student life
In the middle of the central culture blocks, on the other side of the fence from the union of Kalmar and a frisbee throw from Lundagård the day-care center owned by the union is situated giving priority to the children of students.
After the Second World War, during a period when students with children were more common than today, a very generous grant was given to the union: A house to hold a day-care center. When the gates to Lunds Studentkårs Daghem för Barn officially was opened in 1945, students were able to focus more on their studies leaving both children and world wars behind, Students in Lund now had their own day-care center.
– As there was a problem bringing the children to seminars, the students acted on their own and started the day-care center using a foundation, says Carl Håkansson. He is, among other things, general manager for the student union day-care center.
Today there are between five to ten children at the day-care center whose parents are students or young academics.
To get a priority at the day-care center the students apply through the regular municipality line but in the application they refer to student priority.
– The foundation owning the day-care center has some funds giving the children at the day-care center a gilt-edged stay during their time here.
Do they get picture books with academic themes and watch student’s farces?
– No, not at all. However, we hire music, dance and art educators financed by foundation funds. Instead the kids get this kind of culture.
However, the truth is that the union is no longer running the day-care center. In 1985 the day-care center’s activities were taken over by Lunds kommun that now runs it, but the foundation still owns the building housing the day-care center. Within the foundation the interests of the students are, among others, represented by Lunds universitets studentkårer (Lus), and the housing ombudsman. For several years the income from rent from the day-care center gave the foundation the possibility to award scholarships to students with children. This possibility stopped when tax rules made the scholarships unfavourable.
Nowadays the city’s perhaps richest day-care center invests money in special education giving the day-care center its special character.
If it had been easier to close down the foundation the involvement of Lus in the day-care would probably have been something of the past. But so far the student influence reaches far down the ages, and makes it possible for toddlers to rhythmically continue to create special clay cookies about two meters and two decades from their patrons.
text: Carl-Johan Kullving / Max Jedeur-Palmgren
translation: Lars Jansson