How the free Waldorf schools see their role in society

Albrecht Hüttig

1. Education, it is the conviction of Waldorf schools, should be in the best interests of the child and the development of the individual – thus also the definition under international law – not economic or state and political interests.

2. Education is a central task of pluralistic civil society, that is why education monopolies, be they state, economic or societal, are unacceptable.

3. Waldorf schools teach their pupils without selection in a unified educational progression from class 1–12. They recognise every kind of talent and respect the diversity of religious, scientific, societal, ecological and spiritual attitudes to life on the basis of human rights.

4. Waldorf schools admit their pupils in accordance with transparent procedures. They do not expect any kind of confession of faith from parents but assume that they want to enter into an education partnership with the teachers on the basis of Waldorf education.

5. The decision of parents as to the educational establishment they choose for their children should be definitive; it should not be dependent on financial constraints.

6. Waldorf schools are committed to free access to all public-sector schools, no matter who sponsors them. Instead of the obligation to pay school fees for children who attend free schools, the Waldorf schools argue that school financing should be tied to the number of pupils irrespective of who sponsors the school, if necessary taking account of school locations. This means that low-income families can also make use of their right to have a free choice of school.

7. Waldorf schools sponsored by parents and teachers work as charities and on their own responsibility.

8. Waldorf schools work with economic transparency, they disclose their finances as school sponsors as well as in a consolidated overall presentation of all Waldorf schools through the German Waldorf School Association.

9. Qualification in Waldorf education is undertaken in specific training establishments, seminars and independent higher education institutions which work together with the German Waldorf School Association.

10. Waldorf education is evaluated through practice and by means of academic methods, published in academic and subject-specific texts and essays and is in dialogue with representatives of education as an academic discipline.