Saturday, May 12, 2012
Waldorf School of San Diego Reviews by Parents
Used to love this school. Bought into the physical beauty at every turn. Great early education program. Caring staff. Young HS program w/potential. Fun festivals & community through volunteering. Reasonable tuition too. After this last year ~ no more. Community evolved into the secret society of those "committed" to Waldorf Education & the rest who weren't Steiner's diehard followers. Administration became $$ driven instead of human-centered. Teachers became much more into Steiner's anthroposophy to the point of question. Tuition no longer affordable, many families were forced to leave, or to choose which children stayed at the school or had to go somewhere else. No extra help for kids w/special learning needs because it's not recognized in anthroposophy. So now we're one of those former Waldorf families...healing. If the biggest lesson learned from this, we should've researched Steiner's anthroposophy BEFORE enrolling. It's a HUGE commitment of $ & resources not to understand the philosophy & its implications on you & your children. If we knew what we now know about anthroposophy, our children would've never been enrolled in the school in the 1st place.
Waldorf education is the best you can want for your child. Unfortunately this is unobtainable for poor kids. With a bunch of upfront fees, like registration, enrollment, supplies etc. you can easily spend $500 up front. Tuition assistance is up to 50% off for the first child which leaves you still with at least $400 per mo. Which parent with a minimum wage job can afford that? Let alone a parent with more than one child? The exclusion of children for that reason is not in line with the purpose Waldorf was started: for the kids of blue collar workers!
I was initially impressed with their reputation and preschool curriculum. Upon visiting the campus I enjoyed how the elementary students are not pressured to read and therefore do so much later than their public school peers. After taking a music workshop with them I was much less impressed with the lack of quality presented, and was turned off by not being allowed to observe a closed session with young students.
We've had some real issues. But we're hoping that a change in teachers will help.