Advanced search

Please can someone tell me about Steiner schools?

(51 Posts)
cinnamonbun Tue 26-Apr-11 15:33:46

I'm looking into schools at the moment and was recently talking to someone whose kids go to a Steiner school in Kent. It sounded great (no formal learning until the age of 6 or 7 and lots of creative activities, etc) but DH says he's not keen as he's heard lots of bad things about Steiner schools...

I was hoping someone with experience could tell me about the good and bad things. I live in London. Thank you

OP’s posts: |
bamboobutton Tue 26-Apr-11 15:36:42

<settles down comfortably with some knitting to watch this kick off>

JoanofArgos Tue 26-Apr-11 15:39:18

I know adults who went there and found it a bit of a bear pit.
But then again a lot of people do seem to like it. Not sure myself why you'd want to pay money in order for your children not to be taught much.
When you want them to get GSCEs after year 10, and get them into a normal school, they often find it a struggle to adjust to timetables, deadlines and so on.

Collision Tue 26-Apr-11 15:39:27

<<Hands popcorn to bamboo and makes a cup of tea>>

bamboobutton Tue 26-Apr-11 15:40:23

milk and ten sugars, please.

Collision Tue 26-Apr-11 15:40:38

and when you go and look around see how many non-British children are there and if there are any with learning difficulties.


Collision Tue 26-Apr-11 15:41:19

You will miss the thread Bamboo. With all that sugar you will be bouncing off the walls! grin

laptopwieldingharpy Tue 26-Apr-11 15:42:31

<got wine and music>

IslaValargeone Tue 26-Apr-11 15:44:12

Swaps hard computer chair for comfy bean bag.

MummyBerryJuice Tue 26-Apr-11 15:45:36

I'll have some of that virtual wine (teetotal in RL as preggers) and popcorn, thanks.

When is this show getting on the road?

Collision Tue 26-Apr-11 15:46:30

We need Cinnamon to come back!

<<Drinks tea quickly and moves onto wine.>>

AMumInScotland Tue 26-Apr-11 15:49:37

Hi - you'll probably have guessed from some of the responses so far that this is a "lively topic" and likely to get heated.

If you have a look in the search for previous threads on Steiner Schools you will probably get a feel for the amount of heat it tends to generate.....

Because of this, a number of posters who have had bad experiences of Steiner Schools have been asked not to post on that topic any more, so you won't be able to get a full spectrum of views.

I have no personal experience, but looked into Steiner for DS at one point and found some of what is available on the internet very concerning. The fact that Steiner supporters attempt to stifle the debate is also of concern.

loveruthwatson Tue 26-Apr-11 15:50:17

I went to a steiner primary school and my parents panicked and had me crammed for common entrance at 11. Despite living in London, I met my first black person at secondary school. Everyone at my primary school was white (occasional Asian). I am still hazy on what a noun or a verb is - really basic stuff (I went on to get a first in English lit at uni).

It cost my parents about £20k to get me into an academically selective secondary school - some friends of mine went on to steiner secondary schools and I can't say it's stood them in very good stead.

loveruthwatson Tue 26-Apr-11 15:55:02

In terms of being a student, it was okay at the time - there was plenty of bullying, it wasn't some idyllic soft-focus period or anything. No pastoral care at all. I see this is a contentious topic so will shush now!

MummyBerryJuice Tue 26-Apr-11 15:58:50

I'm trying to find a very enlightening article that was linked on a previous thread but to no avail...

IslaValargeone Tue 26-Apr-11 15:59:27

I think they don't actively encourage reading, writing and colours, but they like twigs a lot?

ShirleyKnot Tue 26-Apr-11 16:01:11

I read some very very interesting stuff via google.

MummyBerryJuice Tue 26-Apr-11 16:02:56

They're not known for their diversity or individuality...

laptopwieldingharpy Tue 26-Apr-11 16:07:12

OP sounds like you already know what the controversy is all about.

it all boils down to making an informed choice. if you know what you are getting into or open to experimenting so be it.

MarioandLuigi Tue 26-Apr-11 16:07:48

We went to look round on as my DS has SN. I was quite impressed once I got over the tree hugging. However they dont agree with children using computers at all, and my DS2 is a computer nut.

I like the freedom they have, but I think it goes too far.

Collision Tue 26-Apr-11 16:12:53



mathanxiety Tue 26-Apr-11 16:13:44

Listen to what your DH has been listening to and take it seriously.

What useful role would you say gnomes could play in the teaching of maths? How do you feel about reincarnation? Are you members of an organised religion already or do you have a belief system that you subscribe to? How do you feel about joining one or participating in one without being told it is a religion? Do you think children can get art 'wrong'?

A critique by an American commentator and teacher.

laptopwieldingharpy Tue 26-Apr-11 16:15:07

here we go

laptopwieldingharpy Tue 26-Apr-11 16:18:32

Good link Math.

"To be honest, like so many people, I didn’t go to Waldorf looking for Waldorf education per se, I went to Waldorf because I was looking for something different."

I think that's the key problem.

onadifferentplanettoday Tue 26-Apr-11 16:18:56

My ds is at this moment watching Dr Who on tv whilst using the laptop and spent part of the morning on the xbox. We are not strict vegans nor do we hug trees or talk to gnomes,but he is very happy at out local Steiner where he is doing very well academically,is learning three languages and two instruments,he has become a confident and popular child with a wide general knowledge as well as developing a love of gardening,cooking woodwork and pottery. There are children at his school from accross the globe and of many ethnic origins. You will hear good and bad reports of every type of school but I think it is important that you visit the school and make up your own mind.I don't think it is the place for every child but I am happy it's the right place for my child (he's 13 now) I have three other ds who all went/go to different schools as what is right for one is not always right for another.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in