My children have been at the Waldorf School since they were pre-school age and now that they are moving into the grades we could not be happier with how they have developed not only academically but socially and emotionally as well. We have found that the class room experience has been excellent! We are constantly impressed with how much our children are learning and how fast. Waldorf education is a gift and the faculty at Honolulu Waldorf are highly trained, educated and dedicated to Steiner Education. I highly recommend this school!
This sweet little school has brought years of wonderful education and joy to our children. They absolutely love their teachers and the Waldorf curriculum does what it sets out to do...to instill in the children a love for learning. There is a new administrative director this year at the school and we are thrilled with her leadership skills, professionalism, and friendly demeanor. I can't think of any other school on the Island that I would rather send my children to.
Be very careful about the teachers at this school. After 8 years at the school my child got a terrible teacher that was not held accountable for his abusive behavior and incompetence. In theory this school is great but beware if you get a bad teacher and there are several.
we are very happy with the school. I've read over all the reviews on this site. Of course no school is perfect. I have looked long and had at many private schools on this island. They all have pros and cons. Go with your gut feeling when picking a school. My kids are so happy at Waldorf and we appreciate the small community and wonderful teachers. The new Administrative Director sounds fabulous, we look forward to a strong leader for the school.
I have two children in the Honolulu Waldorf School, one in middle school and one in elementary school. Both children have been at the school since kindergarten and they are thriving, happy, creative, and love their teachers and school. The community is fantastic and we find the teachers and the parents to be dedicated, hard working, and conscientious. We feel very lucky to be in a school that educates the child with their whole well-being in mind; very different from institutionalized schooling. We just found out a new director is joining the school, and so some of the negative comments posted here about the leadership of the school will be a thing of the past! Submitted by a parent
I am a student that attended the Waldorf high school as well as going to the lower school for nine years. I think this is truly one of the most amazing schooling systems imaginable. As a student it really encouraged me to have a passion for learning, as well as giving me a wonderful background in art. I am a student with a very high GPA and also very strong in both music and art of varying mediums. In my opinion I owe my success in school to the amazing teachers and alternate education system that is the Honolulu Waldorf School. Truly a magnificent place to grow and learn.
I love this school. I have a 9 and 16 year old and both started in the Kindergarten. I am a creative intellectual person and found my own education painfully boring. The Waldorf system excites the kids and makes them want to learn. As a successful business owner I recognize the need for talented people who can think outside the box and problem solve. The Waldorf system nurtures this ability in their students. With computers at our fingertips we need to educate kids to think creatively not to regurgitate information. My kids are thinkers and I need to give some of that credit to the Honolulu Waldorf School. It is a loving and supportive environment and I am thankful I have the means to give them this opportunity.
This school has wonderful ideas and gives children the childhood they need and deserve to have, nurturing the imagination and giving them a strong foundation to learn without burning out. Unfortunately it is lacking leadership, organization and I believe parent participation. Tuition is comparable to other private schools on the island yet the facilities are old, neglected and dirty. If Waldorf could find leadership and balance their budget, update their school and playground, families on the island might consider Waldorf. This school should have a wait list just like other schools but because of lack of leadership and neglected facilities it is labeled a "hippy" school. I appreciated the wholesome approach this school offered but did not have the confidence in their leadership (or lack of) to keep my most precious child at this school. Other schools are beginning to embrace this type of learning yet doing it with leadership and organization. Honolulu Waldorf needs to get their act together.
This school has steadily gone downhill with no leadership, poorly trained teachers, a lack of communication, inconsistent discipline, and is constantly changing policy from year to year. Not surprisingly, facilities are in need of repair and the school overall is poorly funded. Very limited enrichment programs and opportunities, particularly for children with challenges and those that are gifted. Anyone brave enough to ask questions are labeled and ostracized. Not a happy place these days.
There is no principal, all decisions are made by teachers. There is no way to track what my child had learned and how well. School felt unorganised and misleading. Would not recomend long term.
Would not recomend this school. Elementary teachers are not properly trained to handle communication with parents. School lacks in organization and it seem to have a lot of gossip. Unless you are willing to follow all their rules, which seems to be getting made up as they go alone, - perhaps you are better off with any other school on the island.
As soon as we mentioned other private schools to our teacher in Pre-K and having her submit the Progress Report to other schools, - everything went upside down. The attitude changed, the Report was not handled properly and was biased and full of her opinions and suggestions. Needless to say, when we questioned the protocol on the such reports written by Pre-K teacher to other schools, - the anwser was, - she should have not written one! i.e. it only applies to grade school and not Pre-K, K level. We complained and were extremely upset. The outcome - THEY TOLD US TO LEAVE THE SCHOOL! Heartless, unorganized, biased, no core value. So , unless you are willing to kiss up and never object, - stay away from this "school". The rule of this school is - The Teacher Is Always Right. ( even when she screwed up)
This is a good school in many ways. It lacks the heart, knowledge and true spirit of Waldorf but is still better in many ways than what else is out there. In Europe, Waldorf works elegantly and effectively for 'difficult' or disruptive children, in fact, so much so that the government pays for some of the most problematic children to attend Waldorf. This is a great life experience for the whole community. It seems that this is not the case here, 'difficult' children are not well-held in a way that they can heal and often become the scapegoats for teachers inability and/or insecurity. We removed our children after several years. We could not recommend this as a wholesome or effective learning environment.
We have two children at the HWS and they love it! If they are sick and we keep them at home, they cry. They don't like school breaks because they miss school. Most importantly to me however, is they are curious about the world around them. I think the world they are growing up into will be very different from the one I grew up in and I believe Waldorf education will give them the tools they will need to be happy.
The Waldorf curriculum was designed to end at 8th grade. Honolulu Waldorf School does very well in the lower grades, and starts to unravel at around the sixth grade. My kids went to this school from pre-k to eight and sixth grades. Parents should ask hard questions of a variety of individuals, not just the teachers that form the governing body. Particularly, ask about how many kids go to college and how discipline is handled. If you question HWS deviation from established Walodorf pedagogy, you and your children will quickly be pushed from the fold.
Children are educated in a wonderful, loving environment. They are supported to reach their potential as each individual person.
My son has attended Waldorf from preschool through the third grade. He is so happy. Everyday he is excited about going to school. He is well rounded, curious about the world and has great integrity. All of these attributes is what a Waldorf education draws out in a child. He take Spanish, Japanese,plays the cello and loves math and science. I know of many children who have transferred from other schools where heavy dry academics was stressed at very young age. These children were miserable at there former schools and now at Waldorf are happy and flourishing. Waldorf instills a love of learning instead of burning children out by giving them unhealthy amounts of homework and academic stress at too young an age. I highly recommend Honolulu Waldorf School.
Honolulu Waldorf School's curriculm is rich and varied - there is no need for 'extracurricular' activities, because it's all included in the day: art, music, physical movement, creativity and critical thinking, along with the 'basic' academics are integrated into a cohesive, engaging educational experience. My daughter has been here for 5 years and finds joy in learning. She loves school. She is treated like a unique individual - her teacher knows her and how she needs to learn. She is valued for who she is. It is a small school with very involved parents who care a great deal for the children, teachers and community.
Honolulu Waldorf is one of the only schools in Honolulu that focuses on developing the 'person' in the students versus focusing almost exclusively on testing and 'academic standards'. The care, discipline and guidance the teachers and the whole community of individuals involved in the Waldorf way of education makes it the best school in Honolulu.
I love this school, my husband loves this school, and my children particulary love this school. My children are enthusiastic about learning, compassionate towards others in their community, and creative in their thinking.
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