Can somebody please talk to me about Steiner schools

(16 Posts)
anyoldnameforathread Sun 31-May-15 23:14:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

meditrina Sun 31-May-15 23:30:56

If you are an adherent to anthroposophy then Steiner schools will suit your viewpoint admirably.

The schools themselves are on a different rhythm (IYSWIM) to others, but it was far too rigid for me. Activities are introduced at pretty much set times, and in specified ways, to fit the pattern of development of the reincarnated soul. There never seemed to be any scope to differentiate away from the anthroposophical path.

basildonbond Mon 01-Jun-15 07:21:27

Imo as a parent of a child with a neurological problem who spent a few miserable months at a Steiner kindergarten, I would say run away as fast as you can and don't stop running until you're in the next county at least

I don't have time to go into all the reasons why but I've shared often enough in the education boards so will be easily searchable

Kampeki Mon 01-Jun-15 07:27:32

I have no direct experience of Steiner, but I find the pseudo-religious aspects of their schools are quite worrying.

redksanderson Mon 01-Jun-15 13:51:59

Actually I know one family in particular with a son with autism, who felt such relief when their boy went to a Steiner school. Here was a place where his whole being was respected and he could learn and grow at his own pace. Learning methods are tailored individually to suit different temperaments in a Steiner school. I think it is a very kind and gentle and caring form of education.

You will always find people who are very much for, and also very much against, and all for their own personal reasons. I would visit your local Steiner school several times and get to know them, and trust your own intuition about whether it works for you and your family.

AmyLeeha Mon 01-Jun-15 17:37:39

I went to one and it was great for me. I enjoyed it. The same school nearly destroyed my brother. He left and did amazingly within a term elsewhere.

The reason I can't send my own children to one is because of how this issue of reincarnation works with bullying. There was bullying in my class - different victims and perpetrators - and nothing was ever done about it. Well that's not true. At one point the perpetrators at that point (most of the boys) were told that we (girls) were "a bit sensitive" and so they should be nicer to us. We were a bit sensitive because they were grabbing us and feeling our boobs IN FRONT OF TEACHERS.

I had no idea about this reincarnated soul playing into bullying policy until after I'd left and was researching myself and came across the same issues from Steiner schools in different corners of the world.

It is a good system, at least for some children, but this is something that I consider extremely serious, especially as many UK Steiner schools feel like laws unto themselves and things are dealt "in house" where in other schools social services would be involved.

I would ask specifically to have a copy of their bullying policy and to ask detailed questions on it. I'd then want to keep on top of it all the time.

Namelesswonder Mon 01-Jun-15 17:45:45

I have no direct dealings with Steiner. I know of several families who have used it and none of them were particularly happy. One family who sent their 3 children to local Steiner school - older 2 DC left with no qualifications at all while youngest child was badly bullied, to the point of self harming. She was taken out and sent to a quite academic private school where she thrived.

anon33 Tue 02-Jun-15 12:14:54

I had great hopes for my local Steiner and went excitedly to the open day.

What a disappointment! The majority of teachers appeared to be under the influence of mind altering drugs; glazed look in their eyes, talking about random unrelated to the conversation type things. I would have felt very uncomfortable leaving my children in their care.

One of the things that attracted me to the school was that the prospectus stated they are non religious (I live in a country where religion heavily features) so when we got there and every room had a painting/sculpture of the madonna and child I was surprised (Likewise the only reading material was biblical stories and myths) I asked how a non christian child would be accommodated and was told that they would just have to join in everything.

anyoldnameforathread Tue 02-Jun-15 12:44:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

UmiSays Tue 02-Jun-15 12:52:46

I think its worth doing really in-depth research into the philosophy behind Steiner before you commit. Also, visit some schools, ask lots of questions and see what you think.

My cousins were all Steiner educated and it worked brilliantly for them, and has turned out some genuinely lovely, well adjusted young adults. For this reason, I investigated Steiner education as an option when my first child was little (about 6 years ago now).

In my experience, I was put off by the schools I visited. It was quickly obvious it wasnt going to suit us as a family - far too much non-evidence based, pseudo-scientific weirdness going on.

My DS was diagnosed with Asperger's about a year later. Being a fair few years down that journey now, I wouldnt send a child with autism to a Steiner school. Hell would freeze over first, in fact.

UmiSays Tue 02-Jun-15 12:55:16

anyoldnameforathread - worth asking about schools etc on the SN chat or SN education boards. So many experienced and knowledgable parents there.

My DS attends a resourced ASC provision within a mainstream school. It works for him, but isnt available in all areas of the country, I know.

UnspecialSnowflake Tue 02-Jun-15 13:01:49

Homeschooling doesn't necessarily mean no peer interaction, there are lots of communities of home edders who get their children together for group activities. I'm no expert but the home ed board on here might be a good place to look for advice.

pointythings Wed 03-Jun-15 22:22:16

I was going to say the same as Snowflake - I am not a home edder myself, but I know that there are a lot of thriving local communities providing plenty of peer interaction - flexibly, when you and your DS need it, which will be better for you than the rigid ethos of a Steiner school. If I were you I would be looking very seriously into home ed for your DS.

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Wed 03-Jun-15 22:25:59

Each Steiner school can be very different so worth checking out the one local to you to see if it is something that appeals

Bluestocking Wed 03-Jun-15 22:35:51

Scary stuff - bullying can't happen at Steiner schools.

worldgonecrazy Thu 04-Jun-15 15:47:43

My dd goes to Steiner and loves it. Having said that, the school is also very honest that they don't have the staff or resources to support every child with special needs, so it might be that they aren't able to accept your son. The best thing to do is go and chat to the school.

I also believe that the best advert for a school is the young adults they turn out into the world, so don't just look at the class your child will be in, look at the older children in the school too.

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