the waldorf school – cultivating humanity? - ecswe. ?· bo dahlin. the waldorf school –...

Download The Waldorf School – Cultivating Humanity? - ecswe. ?· Bo Dahlin. The Waldorf School – Cultivating…

Post on 02-Aug-2018

212 views

Category:

Documents

0 download

Embed Size (px)

TRANSCRIPT

  • Faculty of Arts and EducationEducation

    Karlstad University Studies2007:29

    Bo Dahlin

    A report from an evaluation of Waldorf schools in Sweden

    The Waldorf School Cultivating Humanity?

  • Karlstad University Studies

    2007:29

    Bo Dahlin

    The Waldorf School Cultivating Humanity?

    A report from an evaluation of Waldorf schools in Sweden

  • Bo Dahlin. The Waldorf School Cultivating Humanity? A report from an evalu-ation of Waldorf schools in Sweden

    Research Report

    Karlstad University Studies 2007:29ISSN 1403-8099ISBN 978-91-7063-234-1

    The author

    Distribution:Karlstad UniversityFaculty of Arts and Education

    Education SE-651 88 KarlstadSWEDENPhone +46 54 700 10 00

    2nd revised edition

    www.kau.se

    Printed at: Universitetstryckeriet, Karlstad 2007

  • 3

    Acknowledgments This is a summary report from an evaluation project concerning Waldorf schools and

    Waldorf education in Sweden. The project was funded by The Kempe-Carlgren Fund

    Foundation and was carried out at Karlstad University. The project group consisted of

    Agnes Nobel, Associate Professor of Education at the University of Uppsala; Ingrid

    Liljeroth, retired Associate Professor of Special Needs Education at the University of

    Gothenburg; as well as three research assistants: Cathrine Andersson, Elisabet Langmann

    och Monica Naeser. The present author was the project leader, but this final report could

    not have been written without the work of the whole group.

    The project also had a consulting group consisting of Solveig Hgglund, Professor of

    Education at Karlstad University, and Sven Hartman, Professor of Education at The

    Stockholm Insitute of Education. Thanks are due also to Mats Ekholm, Professor of

    Education (emeritus) at Karlstad University, who gave valuable critical comments on a

    first draft of this report.

    The translation into English of the original Swedish text was financed by The Kempe-

    Carlgren Fund Foundation and The Irne Carlstrms Cultural Fund Foundation. A few

    minor changes from the Swedish version have been made in order to accommodate the

    discovery of new facts and relevant references.

    Karlstad in June, 2007

    Bo Dahlin

  • 5

    Contents

    1. Introduction ........................................................................................................................... 7

    Purpose and research questions ....................................................................................................... 7

    The sample of Waldorf schools........................................................................................................ 8

    Methods of investigation ................................................................................................................ 9

    2. A Summary of the Empirical Studies ................................................................................ 12

    Report 1: Waldorf pupils in higher education .................................................................................. 12

    Report 2: Waldorf schools and the question of segregation .................................................................. 17

    Report 3: Waldorf schools and civic-moral competence ....................................................................... 23

    Report 4: Proficiency in Swedish, English and Mathematics and attitudes to the teaching ......................... 32

    Report 5: Waldorf teacher educators, program coordinators and teacher students experiences of the program

    Certificate of Education with a Waldorf profile................................................................................ 47

    Report 6: Waldorf schools ways of helping children with learning difficulties .......................................... 50

    Was there nothing negative? ......................................................................................................... 53

    3. The Empirical Results in the Light of the Idea of Menschenbildung............................ 57

    Focus on the individual human being ............................................................................................. 57

    Do the pupils become anthroposophists?.......................................................................................... 63

    Education for democracy and active citizenship................................................................................. 65

    4. Waldorf Schools as Factors of Cultural Power.................................................................. 73

    Schools and civil society ............................................................................................................... 74

    Manuel Castells and the power of identity.................................................................................... 77

    The usurpation of cultural power by the economic sphere..................................................................... 82

    Vclav Havel on the power of the powerless and living in the truth................................................ 85

    Waldorf education and the fundamental issues of educational thought ................................................... 89

    A state independent teacher education? ........................................................................................... 91

    The return of Bildung ................................................................................................................. 93

    PostScript to the second, revised edition .............................................................................. 97

    References ............................................................................................................................... 99

  • 7

    1. Introduction

    Purpose and research questions This report summarises and further develops an evaluation project dealing with Waldorf

    education and Swedish Waldorf schools. The evaluation was carried out at Karlstad

    University on behalf of The Kempe-Carlgren Fund Foundation during the period 2002

    2005. The purpose was to highlight questions of interest to the general public, for the

    school authorities and for the Waldorf schools themselves. The main aim of the

    evaluation was to compare the relationship between Waldorf schools and municipal

    schools with reference to three areas: 1) the knowledge attained by pupils; 2) the

    relationship to society, and 3) teacher training. This aim was further defined in the

    following six research questions, which formed the basis of the empirical study:

    1) What percentage of former Waldorf pupils go on to higher education

    and how do they manage their studies?

    2) Do Waldorf schools contribute to increased segregation or to greater

    understanding between different social groups?

    3) Are Waldorf pupils encouraged to develop social and other human

    skills necessary to be active citizens in a democratic society?

    4) What results do Waldorf pupils attain in national tests, compared with

    pupils in municipal schools?

    5) Do Waldorf schools need a specially tailored teacher education or

    can it be a part of the state teacher education programme?

    6) How do Waldorf schools cater for children with learning difficulties?

    These six questions have been explored empirically and the results have been published in

    six work reports (Dahlin, Andersson & Langmann, 2003; Dahlin, Andersson &

    Langmann, 2004a; Dahlin, Langmann & Andersson, 2004b; Dahlin, Langmann &

    Andersson, 2005; Langmann, Andersson & Dahlin, 2005; and Liljeroth, Naeser & Dahlin,

    2006). The reports contain fairly extensive accounts of empirical data based on

    questionnaires and interviews with Waldorf teachers, pupils and parents.

  • 8

    One purpose of this report is to make an internationally accessible presentation of the

    evaluation. In this first chapter there is a description of how the Waldorf schools that

    participated in the project were chosen, the methods of investigation that were used and a

    brief discussion of the reliability of the results. In chapter 2 the central results of the

    empirical investigations are presented. In the chapter 3 and 4 these results are related to a

    wider educational and social philosophical context.

    The sample of Waldorf schools When the investigation was carried out, Sweden had a total of 41 Waldorf schools, 13 of

    which had classes up to year 12. A selection of 11 schools, spread throughout the entire

    country, was made from these thirteen schools - from Ume in the north to Lund in the

    south. When choosing the schools attention was paid to the geographical location

    (city/country as well as county) and to the possibility of getting a large enough sample of

    children who had completed year 12. The chosen schools were first contacted by letter

    and then by telephone. The teachers at the schools decided together whether they wished

    to participate and informed us of their decision. One of the schools did not wish to

    participate in the investigation, with reference to their present situation. This school

    was replaced by another one.

    Four of the schools were in the Stockholm/Jrna area. The reason for this was that these

    schools had a relatively large number of pupils and thus ensured that the investigated

    group was sufficiently comprehensive. Most of the pupils in the