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Waldorf School Of Orange County

Private | K-12 | 320 students


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Living in Costa Mesa

Situated in an inner city neighborhood. The median home value is $430,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,690.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
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13 reviews of this school

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Posted Monday, August 25, 2014

Only enroll in this school if you like seeing your child enjoy going to school each day and if you appreciate knowing that each teacher (all 7) truly cares about your child's well being. As an educator in both top public and private institutions, I have been thoroughly impressed with the care and attention given to the children. The atmosphere at this school does make learning come alive and it shows
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 7, 2013

The Waldorf School of Orange County has been a blessing for our family in so many ways. It is a tight-knit community, my children's classmates and teachers are like family to us and the educational methods are highly effective. The classrooms are alive with movement, music and art that beautifully complement the challenging and diverse curriculum. Parental involvement is high and it is expected. My children look forward to going to school every day. They are nurtured, and they are also challenged to do their best work and be their best selves. No teaching to the test here; these kids are actually retaining what they learn and are hungry for more. I can't recommend this school highly enough.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 27, 2013

My kids had the worst time in their life at this school. The faculties believe large class is better than small one so they keep adding students. The teachers yell at kids in daily bases in order to take care of 30 and more kids in their class with many learning disability kids. The school has big financial problem so they are BIG on donation and it is on the must to do list. They have the chart for donation and it tells how much family had participated on donating the money by each grades. They are competing on which grade get 100 percent participation on annual donation. Most of teacher doesn t have the education degree and those are the one teaches for 1-8. Because they are not capable to cover all subjects many family rely on private tutoring at home. The school has many ritual activities and in order to perform the event they cut down from main lesson curriculum. There is big time bullying going on by kids and by teachers. I felt that the school has poor quality for education and unhealthy social behavior.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 26, 2012

The New High School looks promising and there is finally some technology in a few classrooms. The problem is that this school is over stuffing children in the grades to fill up the free siblings in the high school. The teachers in the lower grades stay with the class from 1st - 8th grade and there are some seriously poor quality teachers as you get closer to the Jr High grades. The children in these classes who have been with the poor teachers all these years have horrible manners and they tend to ignore, or worse, bully new children in these classes and on the playground. The poor teachers, in turn, to save their jobs and their own children's free education, will blame all the problems on the new children. It all works because they only vote unanimously on the College Board of 12. We are Waldorf Alumni from the East Coast and we have found that many Southern California Waldorfs and Charter Waldorfs are vastly below standards for Waldorf Schools nation wide and world wide. They also keep many parents in the dark about standards and philosophies so the current parent body has little idea that they are operating with substandard teachers. Lots of turnover...
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 15, 2012

Waldorf education standards are amazing when taught in the right way. Meant to embrace the individual strengths of a child, soften the focus on weaknesses & provide a place of compassion, free of judgment. Waldorf School of O.C. has translated that in to allowing the kids to express themselves in whatever manner the child sees fit, with little social/emotional guidance. Kids threaten others & act in cruel ways; allowed to express themselves at the expense of others. Affects learning for those who need a stable, creative & caring place to be. Education level is behind what it used to be. Class sizes range 30+. Kids capable of more fall behind; can t concentrate w/surrounding chaos/not given the attention needed. Specialty subjects seem perfection focused. Kids who aren t at the same level as others sit out of orchestra, unable to participate with the group & aren t provided with anyone to help them progress. Little to no parent/teacher communication. Can t say this about every teacher, only what my child has experienced. Have the same teacher/class 1st - 8th grade, so be thorough when interviewing & spend time in the class. No community garden/physical labor is not focused on
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 16, 2011

The UC system requires about 150 units to qualify for admittance. The seniors here graduate with 300 units in everything from calculus (everyone must take it) to chemistry (ditto), physics (ditto), woodwork, painting, drawing, stone carving and more. They are exposed to a classical education with a twist - they are taught to think, not just spew back what is said to them. I wouldn't have my child anywhere else.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 27, 2011

I have been with the school, as a parent and teacher for 7 years. KI can tell you without hesitation that the education at Waldorf Orange County is below what you would get at a good public school. Yes, the arts are great. Yes, the festivals are pretty. But, is that what we are paying for? Fifth graders who can't compose a coherant paragraph? The majority of 8th graders who can't do algebra? Do not be blinded by the surface beauty, the underbelly is not pretty!! There is no administration. There is no consistency in the education. You are rolling the dice with your child's future by enrolling them in Waldorf. Beware!!!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 24, 2010

The teachers are great and the parents all involved in all aspects of the child learning

Posted April 24, 2010

the music, the festivals, the comunity, the arts, the teachers, the love & heart put into every aspect of these children's education!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted September 20, 2009

It is a school that offers care, concern and committment to the full expression of being human

Posted September 19, 2009

I am constantly amazed by the awareness that each teacher has for every child. In no otherplace i have been is there so much thought put into what is best for each and every one, even if it is not popular.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 26, 2006

My kids have attended since kindergarten. It's been wonderful place for them to go and learn everyday. They are learning two foreign languages and they both play strings instruments. We love the style of teaching and the fact that they integrate all learning into movement. This makes everything they learn a part of who they are. I would say Waldorf education is great for 90% of children. The other 10% would be children who require a more challenging curriculum or those with behavioral issues. There is huge parent involvement too. If you are someone who wants to do nothing but drop off at the curb, this isn't the school for you.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 15, 2005

The Waldorf School of Orange County does not follow a mainstream academic model, but rather an interesting mix of art, music, languages (two foriegn languages are taught beginning in 1st grade), handwork, story and games. It is through this mix that the children are introduced to numbers and letters. In the later grades students are encouraged to use this interdisciplinary approach to do self directed research. The parents at this school are very involved and thus create a very connected community. Seasonal festivals are held which further tightens the involvement of the children and the parents. The negatives that I experienced were that there is no parent involvement in the curriculum or inner workings of the teaching. There is no Principal, but a 'College of Teachers' and communication with parents is, in my opinion, one directional toward the parent. They are firm but kind, but tend toward conformity.
—Submitted by a parent

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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 69% 26%
Hispanic 17% 52%
Black 1% 6%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 1%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 1%
Two or more races 0% 3%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

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School basics

School Leader's name
  • Ms. Gina Illes
  • Coed
  • Nonsectarian


Instructional and/or curriculum models used

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  • Waldorf


School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Library
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2350 Canyon Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
Phone: (949) 574-7775


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