At this point, I’m sure you know that I’m going to tell you I don’t like Waldorf. Because I don’t like public school and I don’t like Montessori and I don’t like Sudbury. So of course I don’t like Waldorf.
Here’s why. Let’s say it’s actually completely free of agenda, that kids do whatever they want that is available to them in that setting (a big caveat of course) and let’s say that the teachers are great (big leap since most can’t be fired) and let’s even say that the kids are disproportionately dyslexic (the number who are is really high – as a parent with dyslexia who has a kid with dyslexia you can trust me on this). Let’s say it’s all perfect, which is what Waldorf parents are going to say in the comments anyway.
This is what I think: it’s still school.
The premise of a school is that the parents are looking for somewhere to put their kids during the day. Sending that message to the kids makes no sense to me.
Why not be a family first, instead of sending the kids to school? You work for 70 years. You have kids that want to be at home with you for 15. Most smart creative people can figure out something interesting to do for work that allows their kids to grow up at home, with their parents.
Looking at alternative schools is still sending kids to a babysitter. And I think parents like to think that alternative school is like looking for a high-end babysitter, but it’s not. Kids need someone who can help them identify their passion by supporting their explorations. The job of parents is to help kids find what they are passionate about. Some kids are passionate about art, or music, or sports.
None of that is best done with a Waldorf teacher. Because if you are passionate about something, you deserve a teacher who is equally passionate about that same thing. The job of a parent is to help their kid find the passion and the teacher.
School is a distraction from that, for both the kids and the parents. Even Waldorf. .