Parent Testimonial in waldorf-critics Post


By Kathy H


on 12/19/01 4:48 PM, Kathy H at wrote:

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What a parent could get from a brochure is a very detailed and genuine presentation of a school’s ideology and foundation. In the case of waldorf schools this would be a clear presentation of what anthroposophy is and who Rudolph Steiner was. The waldorf school we attended did not provide this. Not in written form, not in the form of a recommended reading list and not in the form of any verbal presentations.

In our specific case, we would not have enrolled our child at all. The teacher would have been irrelevant. We pulled our child out not because of some incident that happened but because we read Steiner. We didn’t like what we read and felt very violated that the school had been operating on a level that excluded us from the pedagogy. I say this because in addition to not being provided the information up front, many questions that I asked of different teachers were not answered in a straightforward manner.

In the case of the kindergarten teacher I know for a fact that her vague and deflective manner was not due to her limited knowledge of RS and anthroposophy. In discussions I’ve had with another parent in that class there was a wide range of knowledge about anthroposophy and Rudolph Steiner that this teacher shared with that parent. I found out at a meeting I attended after leaving the school that the teacher’s husband (also a board member) stated that he had been studying Steiner for 2 decades.

To be more specific about what I mean when I say ‘vague’. Here is one example. There were so many on every topic from why is losing teeth important to why should my daughter wear shorts under her dresses.

Teacher: “I think your child should see Dr. Anthro when he visits in the fall.”

Me: “She’s very healthy and we’re happy with the doctor we have now.”

Teacher: “Yes, but this doctor is really good. I think he might be able to help with the transition issues your child is experiencing.”

Me: “Well, exactly what is an anthroposophical doctor?”

Teacher: “Pretty much just like a homeopath.”

Now, this exchange certainly doesn’t contain anything I would call lying. Maybe misleading? Certainly not clear. The teacher is giving me a response that in no way delves into anthroposophical medicine and the spiritual nature of it. Fortunately we never quite made it to see this doctor.