Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: with all the madmen
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I taught at two Waldorf schools for three years total, and after leaving the second my daughter attended public Montessori for just over one year (homeschooling now). There were some alarming racists among my colleagues at one school, but I suspect there are racists everywhere. At school they were certainly not finding justification in Steiner's literature; in fact, diversity and racism became a year-long faculty study, which willingness to change you might not find in other workplaces.
Some of Steiner's language could be considered offensive by modern standards; so could Aristotle's. The question seems truly to be whether to judge someone by the standards of their own time or ours, as pointed out by the Thomas Jefferson remark.
The children at the local Montessori schools, both public and private, know all about "Dr Montessori," but I think only the children of Waldorf teachers hear anything about Rudolf Steiner.
We moved to another state when we left Waldorf, in case readers are curious. We had our complaints, but that's the case everywhere too. It's the individual school, teachers and community that makes it a good place for a family, not the pedagogy.