Brussel, 25 January 2024

Calling our members to better understand their needs and challenges
From June to September 2023, we held two-hour long video calls with 25 out of our 27 member associations. The calls provide insights into our members’ needs so we can align our work and resources accordingly.

Teacher shortages, funding, and curriculum development are the leading challenges

Accord­ing to the report­ed real­i­ties of our mem­bers, the biggest chal­lenges for Stein­er Wal­dorf schools and school asso­ci­a­tions in Europe are teacher recruit­ment and train­ing, finan­cial sus­tain­abil­i­ty of mem­ber asso­ci­a­tions and schools, cur­ricu­lum devel­op­ment, advo­ca­cy oppor­tu­ni­ties, and pub­lic rela­tions. Cat­e­goris­ing these chal­lenges by the pri­or­i­ty to find solu­tions and the inten­si­ty of the chal­lenge across our mem­ber­ship, the list­ed chal­lenges are fol­lowed by con­cerns relat­ed to school infra­struc­ture, school gov­er­nance, inclu­siv­i­ty, and the pro­tec­tion of the Wal­dorf trademark.

Interested in how we can better help our members in matching their needs

We also tried to bet­ter under­stand what kind of capac­i­ty build­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties, the­mat­ic work­ing groups, and Euro­pean-lev­el projects we could offer to best sup­port our mem­bers’ needs. The needs most men­tioned in this con­text were for train­ing on fundrais­ing, advo­ca­cy, pub­lic rela­tions, cur­ricu­lum, and upper school devel­op­ment. These find­ings serve as the basis for the Eras­mus+ webi­na­rs, advo­ca­cy and pub­lic rela­tions online train­ing, fur­ther devel­op­ment of a com­mon cur­ricu­lum frame­work for Stein­er Wal­dorf schools, and feed into the UPSWE project, all planned to be realised dur­ing 2023 and 2024.

Collecting information from the national level to better advocate on the European level

To enhance our Euro­pean-lev­el ini­tia­tives, through these calls we sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly gath­ered and doc­u­ment­ed data on var­i­ous aspects of Stein­er Wal­dorf edu­ca­tion on the nation­al lev­el. This effort was co-fund­ed with­in our EU-grant­ed work plan for 2023. We were gain­ing insights into the recog­ni­tion of Stein­er Wal­dorf schools, cur­ricu­lum devel­op­ment and accred­i­ta­tion, qual­i­ty assur­ance mea­sures, sus­tain­abil­i­ty and media edu­ca­tion prac­tices, lead­er­ship in schools and asso­ci­a­tions, as well as effec­tive strate­gies for parental involve­ment. Based on these insights, we can bet­ter rep­re­sent our mem­bers’ needs in our advo­ca­cy efforts with­in the Euro­pean Edu­ca­tion Area and beyond.

A question? Please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Georg Jürgens