Dear Spring Garden Community,
Thank you for all of your feedback through the parent survey, parent meetings, and individual phone calls. Our personal interactions with you bring us joy as we hear about the children we miss so dearly. We want to take a moment and update you on a few items that are in response to what we are hearing from our parent body as well as what we see as best for the children.
Some common themes we are seeing from the survey and personal conversations with parents are:
- A need for lessons that require less parent interaction in early childhood and lower grades
- More flexibility in completing the daily/weekly work
- More audio and video presence of teachers in early childhood and the lower grades
- Concerns about the tuition cost and value in relation to distance learning
- Appreciation for the work of the faculty and a greater insight into the Waldorf curriculum
The Executive Committee of the Board which is composed of parents, administration, faculty, and board members is discussing concerns about tuition and value of service. We recognize the education of our students and its impact on SGWS families, especially in Pk -Grade 2, has changed dramatically as a result of this health crisis. While we don’t know what the outcome of this work will be, we want you to know that we have parents, board members, and staff working together to tackle this difficult and sensitive topic in a way that keeps the school fiscally solvent while looking at creative ways to thank you for all of your support in this work.
In response to your feedback, the faculty is implementing the following changes to lessons.
The changes will be implemented in lessons beginning 4/27, although lessons may include some elements beginning on 4/20.
Early Childhood Audio Files
Faculty will provide audio files of either songs/verses or of a story for the child to listen to each week.
Recorded Video Lessons for Grades 1-3
Faculty will add more audio for instruction and use video to support specific activities such as recorder, form drawing, and movement. The goal of adding video is to provide clearer direction to the student and reduce parent involvement.
Flexibility During the Week
The faculty in Grades 1-8 will move to a four day teaching rhythm. The fifth day will include opening and morning verse, then time to review the week’s work and catch-up in main lesson or subject classes.
By implementing these changes and evolving our work, we hope to help parents as they balance all of their responsibilities. We recognize that audio and video recordings lack the soulful connection of working together in real time/space with one another.
Your continued feedback, investment in Waldorf education, and support of the work is building a sense of community in a way we never would have imagined. A wise teacher (with a long gray braid) once told me that we learn more from a difficult situation than we ever will when things are steady. Thank you for continuing to help us learn and develop an approach that meets the children and the needs of families in a way that tests our ability to adapt and still meet the mind, body, and soul of the children.
“Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.” Joseph Campbell
Director of Administration
Spring Garden Waldorf School
1791 S. Jacoby Rd.
Copley, Ohio 44321