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941 Austin Street
Bellingham, WA 98229

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(360) 733-3164
(360) 733-0526
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Map of Whatcom Hills Waldorf School address.
Teacher effectiveness: Somewhat effective
October 17, 2015
For what they teach it seems the kids learn what they wan them to know. I don't think it really prepares them for the reality of public high school or how to function in that setting.

- submitted by a parent
Amount of homework: Don't know
October 17, 2015
It depends upon the grade level your child is in. The lower grades don't get homework until the 3rd grade.

- submitted by a parent
Develops grit: Neutral
October 17, 2015
What can I say? Maybe persistence because of the knitting, and memorization of poetry and such.

- submitted by a parent
Develops respect: Strongly disagree
October 17, 2015
My son's class was full of mouthy kids that disrespected the teacher and other adults. The idea from the parents that paid full tuition is that they pay good money thus, this is the teacher's fault. The teachers are treated like the hired help by full tuition paying parents.

- submitted by a parent
Develops empathy: Strongly disagree
October 17, 2015
Absolutely not! I think that there are individual teachers that try to instill this but when you are not an example of this to other adults, teachers, staff and to people with disabilities or low income the children grow up to be like the adults they see.

- submitted by a parent
Develops honesty: Strongly disagree
October 17, 2015
I think they sell the idea of honesty, integrity and fairness but they do not lead by adult example.

- submitted by a parent

October 17, 2015
At first I was taken by all the hype about the school. I believed the lie. I really fell for the illusion they present of a community that cares about and nurtures children in a safe environment. The problem is that under the illusion there is a lot of back biting among the staff and a gate keeper mentality. Under the illusion of community and a desire for economic diversity there is class-ism. Under the illusion of acceptance there is discrimination and ableism. I promise that if your child has a intellectual or learning disability they will push your child off on the public school for services which negates the whole purpose of going there or they will deny them admissions because "they cannot serve the child" or they believe "the child's disabilities will distract from the other children". The truth is that non of the teachers hold real education degrees. They go to Steiner College and only know that style of teaching and theories of learning. The gate keepers do not want intellectual diversity and abide in ableism. They talk out of both sides of their mouth when confronted about this issue. I pulled my son out of there when they denied a high functioning autistic child admission based on the fact that she could not count to ten verbally and refused to test her so that the child could show that she could count in writing. They want all the children to fit into their ideal Waldorf child. Thus, if you cannot count to ten verbally but can write your numbers to 100 you will be denied admission by the gate keepers. I do not recommend this school if you want your child to grow up to be emphatic to those that are different than the IDEAL WALDORF CHILD.

- submitted by a parent

March 29, 2014
We have been at Whatcom Hills for two years now. We are thrilled with the school. Our child loves it. It is a magical place. There is a lot of work involved for the parents but I think it is well worth it. I don't think there is any school with 100% parent satisfaction but I am very happy with the school and so is my child. The teachers really seem to care about the school and its students. They may be going through some changes and even dropped some classes but do they really need TWO foriegn languages? They do still have woodworking and many other "extra" classes you wont find in public schools.

- submitted by a parent

January 10, 2014
I've been a parent at this school for four years and I've noticed a clear deterioration of the school in general and the teaching in particular. Constant talk of financial difficulties and reduced programs combined with low teacher morale show signs of rapidly deteriorating organization. There seems to be no clear future and extremely low morals. This will be my last year.

- submitted by a parent

December 04, 2013
I noticed that several of the positive reviews are the EXACT SAME review as the Seattle Waldorf school. Is it possible that theses positive reviews are actually seeded. Could a school stoop that low?

- submitted by a parent

November 15, 2012
I value the Waldorf School's focus on the individual needs of the child and its efforts to educate our children to be balanced human beings. Also I appreciate the Schools efforts to foster an appreciation of the true,the good and the beautiful in the world and in themselves.

- submitted by a parent

November 05, 2012
I've been a parent at WHWS for over 10 years. I am the proud parent of a high school graduate, high school sophomore and eighth grader. WHWS is a school that nurtures the whole child while at the same time providing a rich and comprehensive curriculum that creates life long learners. I'm so proud that my children have been to attend WHWS and I'm grateful for the community that is provides for our family.

- submitted by a parent

November 05, 2012
My two daughter have absolutely loved the school. The have both attended since kindergarten and have thrived. I was concerned because both of their reading skills lagged somewhat behind the metrics set up by the publice school system and as I was told, they would read when they were ready. By 4th grade my older daughter was a voracious reader and finished the entire Harry Potter series in one summer. She has far surpassed all public school standards and best of all she did it on her own without anyone forcing her to read using an arbitrary timeline. We held our youngest daughter back one extra year in kindergarten because we felt she was not ready. The extra time was instrumental in her development. She now thrives in class and truly loves her classmates and her teacher.

- submitted by a parent

October 30, 2012
I am an educator by trade and have children who love coming here everyday. This is a school where childhood matters, and play is taken seriously by the preschool and kindergarten teachers. Great care is taken to provide beautiful spaces, build social skills and foster creative minds who happily problem solve how to build a fort, sail a pirate ship or be a family of wolves with four other friends. We love that the school community supports our family values of a non-commercial, low-media childhood with lots of time outdoors. We reap the benefits of Waldorf when we see our children being kind to others, working in the garden and being entertained for hours making things with their own hands. The non-academic Kindergarten has somehow fostered the intellectual mind of our second grade child. His passion for reading books is clearly inspired by listening to all those increasingly complex stories. He reads with "voice", has an appreciation for a good story, recalls well and his comprehension is at a fourth grade level. He's a visual learner, so the experiential methods and use of manipulatives in learning math processes works well. We love how learning happens in context.

- submitted by a parent

September 18, 2012
My husband and I were skeptical before we came to this school, but after five years at the school we are very, very happy with the education our daughter is receiving. The education is quite similar to the highly successful program taught in the Finnish schools, and the teachers, parents, and other students form a wonderful community that's surprisingly diverse. I thought we'd have trouble fitting in, and frankly we don't fit it, but we're accepted, respected, and involved anyway. It's okay to be ourselves. We're especially pleased with the school's focus on using children's strongest desires as a way of teaching them -- teaching math through movement, foreign language through singing, things like that. The children absolutely love going to school, and come home with so much knowledge and wisdom, and are respectful, thoughtful, and artistic too. I just wish there were a Waldorf high school in Bellingham.

- submitted by a parent

November 11, 2011
This should be a fantastic school, but it is not. The Waldorf style of teaching should be a magical experience, but this particular school is run in a small minded way. Enrollment is falling and funding is an issue here, as so many families have their tuition subsidised, and families keep leaving. Many children have left this school in recent years due to parent disatisfaction at the way this school is run, and how some children are treated by teachers. Recruitment of teachers is an insular activity. Qualifications and experience take second place to being friends with the current teachers. In the last few years, the following subjects have been cancelled: Woodwork, German, Eurythmy. Is this actually a Waldorf school anymore? I think Rudolf Steiner would be shocked and ashamed to see this school operated as it is.The sign of a good school is a waiting list. No waiting list here! If you want a Waldorf education for your child, look elsewhere. You have been warned.

- submitted by a parent

October 15, 2010
Great school. Our children have attended the school since 1998. Our eldest child has transitioned well to the public high school and we feel grateful for the kind care and broad education he received while attending this school for eleven years. Our younger child is still enrolled in the school. We have received great parenting support in this community and are impressed by the current leadership and parent energy!

- submitted by a parent

September 28, 2010
It's too bad to read that a parent had a bad experience in the past and has therefore chosen to bash the school as a whole. The school has undergone a major transition - in both administration and teaching staff. They are dedicated and committed to making Whatcom Hills Waldorf School a wonderful place for children to receive a top notch education. Waldorf Education is the fastest growing non-denominational education system in the world. They integrate the arts and academics and teach it in an experiential and developmentally appropriate manner. Waldorf Graduates have incredibly high levels of success. Visit whywaldorfworks.org for more stats, studies and quotes. Both my daugthers are thriving at this school - I wouldn't send them anywhere else!

- submitted by a parent

September 20, 2010
The Waldorf educational structure takes your children through the stages of learning that their minds and bodies are naturaly in. My first son went from down in depressed in public schools to a happy good student in the Whatcom Hills Waldorf. If you want your kids to learn how to be engaging well rounded humans, this is the place for you. I

- submitted by a parent

May 10, 2010
I only give it one star because there doesn't seem to be an option for zero stars. This school is not for me, nor if I had a choice, would I allow any of my children to go here again. The school has no written policies or substance. Consequently, their discipline is sparratic at beast. They also claim to want to teach the children openmindedness, tolerance and acceptance. They do a great job of that as long as you subscribe to thier viewpoints, but if you don't subscribe to their viewpoints, don't look like they do, they you will be left out, pushed aside, not even acknowleged at functions. They make extremely poor decisions as a whole.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
September 18, 2009
WHWS truly provides a whole nourishing environment for young people. The community developed holds the whole family in love and support.

- submitted by a community member

January 15, 2009
Great, talented, inspiring teachers - my three kids all went through from kindergarten and got a first-rate classical, multicultural, rich education. They are bright, creative, outgoing teenagers. It's the best!

- submitted by a parent
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About this school

Our school was founded in 1986 and is located in the Geneva neighborhood. We use a time-tested, arts-infused curriculum to provide an education to our students that preserves their love for learning and their innate resilience to meet the future with confidence. Our families enjoy a close social community throughout their time here that forges life-long friendships. We invite you to come to an informational session and tour and experience what our school has to offer you and your children.

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Last modified: October 17, 2015

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Whatcom Hills Waldorf School
941 Austin Street, Bellingham, WA  98229
(360) 733-3164
Last modified Whatcom Hills Waldorf School is a Private school that serves grades PK-8
Whatcom Hills Waldorf School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 23 reviews. Top