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College Success

On the home page of the Association of Waldorf Schools of North American web site (AWSNA), they tell us that an Associate Professor of Physics at Amherst University finds Waldorf graduates well prepared for college:

By the time they (Waldorf Students) reach us at the college and university level, these students are grounded broadly and deeply and have a remarkable enthusiasm for learning. Such students possess the eye of discoverers and the compassionate heart of the reformer which, when joined to a task, can change the planet.

Arthur Zajonc, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Physics, Amherst College.

However, what they don't tell us is that Professor Zajonc is also the General Secretary of the Anthroposophical Society in America. (scroll down) Personally, I don't make much of the omission, but it certainly could suggest a conflict of interest.

Perhaps this quote was used because there isn't much hard information with regards to Waldorf graduates and college success. In over 80 years of educating children, there has never been an official published study on how Waldorf graduates perform with regards to college success. Many schools that prepare their students for college attempt to back up their practices with studies such as this one. While many public and private schools that claim to prepare their students for college quantitatively track the success of their students, this has never been a priority for Waldorf.

There is one article on the AWSNA web site that makes reference to information gathered on 1100 of their graduates that suggest 90% of Waldorf high school go on to some form of higher education. There is no information on how many of these students achieve 4 year degrees. The methodology and raw data behind single this study are not revealed. If this data is so compelling, why is it not published?

Testimonials, Pro and Con

For the most part, Waldorf relies on testimonials to support the assertion that Waldorf means college success for children. Clearly, many Waldorf parents, graduates and educators have had positive personal experiences with regards to Waldorf and college.

There are a number of sources where you can find these positive testimonials:

Summerfield Waldorf School and Farm

Nelson Waldorf School

I have only heard rumors with regards to negative experiences with regards to Waldorf and college success. While there are some negative testimonials with regards to Waldorf, none of them specifically address college success.

The Bottom Line

Assuming you are comfortable doing so, you will most likely have to trust your intuition with regards to how Waldorf might prepare your child for college. Here are some questions that you might ask of Waldorf and other schools you are considering. is updated frequently. Sign up for FREE email updates!

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