2012 has seen a number of major developments round New Zealand for Rudolf Steiner Waldorf schools and early education centres, as well as within the tertiary education sphere. These - in no particular order - include:
- Titirangi High School Registration - the school has received confirmation from the Education review Office that it has all that is requred by the Ministry of Education to be granted full registration for High School classes. This is a huge achievement for a private school.
- Motueka and 6 year olds in kindergarten - after a query from ERO, the Federation was able to work with the Ministry to produce an agreement covering 6 year olds in kindergartens attached to private schools os it along side that already in place relating to the integrated schools.
- Waikato Class 8 - the Ministry has given approval for Class 8 to be run now after thorough investigation and preparation by the school.
- New Kindergarten at Oromahoe - close to Kerikeri a new kindergarten has come into being after a number of years work by the Bay of Islands Trust - warm congratulations to all.
- Four Seasons - the Taupo kindergarten is coming towards the close of it's second year of operation with a growing strength.
- Whitianga New Kindergarten - the Kuaotunu Trust has this year opened a second kindergarten in Whitianga - again,warm congratulations are given.
- AUT Memorandum of Understanding - a new Memorandum was signed by the Federation and the University this year to ensure the continuing development of degree courses with Steiner options. This is a vital step to build on the success of this joint venture.
- Motueka's New Campus Project - The school has launched a project to build a new campus with Peter Garlick employed to manage the development - see http://www.motueka.steiner.school.nz/Welcome.html.
- Taruna College – John Burnett has joined Taruna as Programme Director. John has been a pioneer of tertiary Waldorf education for many years at Plymouth University in England.
- Steiner School Certificate - the certificate is being worked for by students in three high schools and certificates have been awarded for the first time. (See below for more on the Certificate.)
- Legal Protections - working wtth the legal firm, Buddle Findlay, the Federation has been able to put in place legal protections for the Steiner School Certificate and for the use of Rudolf Steiner's name in New Zealand for the purposes of education.
- New Principals - both Te Ra and Michale Park Schools have appointed new principals this year. Warm wishes are given to both schools and to the incoming and outgoing principals.
Learning Steps Assessment - this year is the first year all state-integrated schools are assessing and reporting to parents and Boards of Trustees against the national Learning Steps following our successful negotiation with the Ministry of Education over National Standards.
The Steiner School Certificate Achieves a Milestone in Education in New Zealand
The Steiner School Certificate, a new secondary school qualification for Rudolf Steiner schools, recently received full recognition from the New Zealand Qualification Authority. The qualification was developed by the Federation of Rudolf Steiner/ Waldorf Schools’ in New Zealand, who own, quality-manage and award the certificate.
The Steiner School Certificate provides students at Steiner schools with a qualification at an equivalent level to other secondary school qualifications, in particular NCEA.
The courses covered by the certificates awarded in Years 11,12 and13 are registered on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework at Levels 1, 2 and 3 and recognized by NZQA as providing quality assurance with regard to course structure, assessment rigor and national consistency.
The certificates are awarded with endorsements at Achieved, Highly Commended, and Distinction levels and result from rigorous assessment practices across a very broad range of subjects including English, the Social Sciences, Mathematics, the Sciences, the Arts and Crafts, Technology, Physical Education and Movement, and Languages, as well as validating the significant extra effort required of Steiner students to undertake independent research projects.
Universities New Zealand – Te Pokai Tara, has also approved the Level 3 certificate, which means that students who have achieved a Steiner School Certificate at Level 3 under certain, specific criteria, may be admitted Ad Eundem Statem (with equivalent status) to any of the eight NZ universities.
The certificate is a major breakthrough for Steiner education as it provides a protective framework around the special character of the Rudolf Steiner/ Waldorf Schools curriculum and enables a recognized pathway for Steiner school pupils through to tertiary education.
On behalf of the Federation of Rudolf Steiner/ Waldorf Schools in NZ