Talk:Waldorf education

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Posted by Penwhale for the Arbitration committee. See Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Waldorf education/Review.

Format of list by country

I'm not sure that I've improved things by compressing this table to leave less white space. The two versions follow; any thoughts? HGilbert (talk) 22:44, 2 June 2014 (UTC)

Recognized independent Waldorf schools by continent
Africa Asia Europe N. America Oceania S. America
Schools 22 51 718 146 47 55
Countries 5 12 36 4 2 5


Recognized independent Waldorf schools by continent
Continent Schools Countries
Africa 22 5
Asia 51 12
Europe 718 36
North America 146 4
Oceania 47 2
South America 55 5

As a reader, but not editing here, I find the 3 column version much to be preferred, due to shorter span and more informative listing. There may be an ease-of-viewing-and-comprehension standard for such things? Qexigator (talk) 18:52, 3 June 2014 (UTC)

Unclear whether or not anthroposophy is taught in the schools?

These two sentences right next to each other seem to contradict one another. Both are cited yet they can't both be right. "While anthroposophy underpins Waldorf schools' organisation, curriculum design and pedagogical approach (and frequently, the design of the buildings, as well as pupil and teacher health and diet), it is explicitly not taught within the school curriculum.[34][12]:6" AND "The curriculum of Waldorf teacher education programs includes both pedagogical texts and other anthroposophical works by Steiner.[35]" Sgerbic (talk) 15:33, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

I can see why they are puzzling together. One refers to the schools, the other to the teacher education. I will try to clarify this in the article. HGilbert (talk) 16:19, 21 June 2014 (UTC)
Thanks HGilbert that helps a little, but I'm still confused. The article now seems to claim (and the reader is led to believe) that Anthroposophy, which is taught to the teachers as part of their TRAINING, is NOT the "spirituality" that is in the Waldorf curriculum. What "spirituality" are we talking about in the curriculum if it isn't Anthroposophy?Sgerbic (talk) 03:40, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
Does the Spirituality section not answer just that? It's a non-sectarian approach. I wonder how this can be clarified. Any thoughts, anyone, or better yet sources? HGilbert (talk) 17:21, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

Why lead with mention Herbart?

The lead first paragraph of "Origins and history" includes: Steiner's "conception of education was deeply influenced by the Herbartian pedagogy...", but: 1_ this does not appear correctly to represent (and perhaps contradicts) what he expressed in (for instance) the lecture "Spiritual Science and Modern Education", given at Basel, 20 April 1920[1] (p.18), and 2_There seems to be no other mention of Herbart or his pedagogy in the body of the article such as to merit such prominence in the lead. The article would be improved by either omitting this reference to Herbart or expanding on it critically in the body. If the latter would be UNDUE, then the former would apply. User:Qexigator|Qexigator]] (talk) 18:23, 22 June 2014 (UTC) Now corrected. Qexigator (talk) 23:59, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

I don't see this in the lead...HGilbert (talk) 23:16, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
No, my mistake - in first paragraph of "Origins and history". My comment above corrected. Qexigator (talk) 23:59, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
No problem. There's an inline citation justifying the inclusion. HGilbert (talk) 01:15, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
That creates the problem, as mentioned above. The citation does not support the assertion. Also, Ullrich looks like a dubious source, inclined to distort the information to suit a particular POV[2] , which may please some but does not answer my (corrected) comments, 1 or 2. Qexigator (talk) 02:02, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
OK -- I added another citation, with very complete explanations of the links. HGilbert (talk) 11:40, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
Revision 10:52, 23 June[3] noted, but in my view not sufficient to remove doubting comments above: "deeply influenced by" looks like manifest error on part of the German author or the unknown translator. The peculiar status of this article (arbitration etc.) is an indicator of previous troubled editing concerned with removing distortions misrepresenting Steiner, whether in good faith or not. The fact is, Steiner acknowledged Herbart's work, but regarded it as too "intellectual": that is a decisive and crucial difference which "deeply influenced by" obscures or obliterates. Qexigator (talk) 11:50, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
I have incorporated Steiner's own descriptions of his disagreements into the description. I hope this satisfies. Otherwise, we have two very strong sources that agree. At the moment that's a pretty complete description of the information provided by sources that we have already located. The best would be to find sources that present more facts about the relationship. Absent these, perhaps have another look at WP:Truth. HGilbert (talk) 12:16, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
Yes, Revision 11:48, 23 June[4] meets the point well: the lecture cited, and its date, are of the first importance for anyone wishing to discover what Steiner had to say about education at the time of the founding of the school at Stuttgart, which is consistent with everything else he said and did about education. Qexigator (talk) 13:18, 23 June 2014 (UTC)

Notable critic?

Pink Floyd's lead guitarist and vocalist David Gilmour enrolled his children into a Waldorf school, but has subsequently spoken out about the "horrific" experience it was.[5] Kurtis (talk) 14:33, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

it certainly relates to the general problem of providing adequate support for students with special learning challenges. Perhaps we can find some less anecdotal sources as well. HGilbert (talk)
The linked Telegraph article does not speak about the issue of special needs children who are enrolled in Waldorf. It does speak about the "slack" system, the unrealistic progress reports, and the patchy results. Binksternet (talk) 16:14, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
The standards for notability are that the person must be notable in the field for which s/he is being cited. Gilmour is not, so far as I know, a notable educationalist.
From an encylopediacal standpoint, these are comments by a single parent not backed up by anything further. Do we want to open the article up to every parent recommendation and complaint about Waldorf education that has ever appeared in the media? If so, we're going to have a mighty big, and mostly pretty worthless, article. HGilbert (talk) 18:49, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I would push harder if there was a lot of media coverage of Gilmour's opinion, but there was only this Telegraph article, and some discussion of it on bulletin boards. If some non-educator's viewpoint gets a ton of media coverage then it would be remiss of us not to mention it. Binksternet (talk) 19:06, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
OK -- I haven't been treating media coverage as very significant, but that makes sense. In line with the guidelines you set out, I've added the NY Times piece that was picked up and reported on in a host of other newspapers and on television news programs. HGilbert (talk) 23:40, 8 July 2014 (UTC)