Friday, September 2012
Welcome from the College of Teachers
Dear CWS Families, As the 2012-13 school year began, the faculty and staff at the Chicago Waldorf School were filled with enthusiasm to see the returning students and their families. It’s been a pleasure to see how much our students have grown, hear stories about summer adventures and, also, to welcome new students and their families into our community.
Faculty Professional Development
During the summer our dedicated staff “holds down the fort” at school while the faculty prepares for classes, attends conferences and participates in summer enrichment courses. Due to the tremendous generosity of our community at the 2011 Gala, many faculty members had significant enriching professional development experiences this past summer. In addition, those funds will help to support a review this school year of our World Languages Program as well as our Educational Support Program.
Workshop Trainings with Early Childhood Specialist, Nancy Blanning.
The faculty and staff began the academic year with an Orientation Week that included lectures and discussions with Nancy Blanning, a renowned Waldorf Early Childhood specialist (pictured right). Nancy led us in many thought-provoking conversations about the needs of the children today and how we can best meet them. Our time with Nancy laid the groundwork for this year’s weekly faculty and staff study.
The Waldorf Approach to Technology
As you may know, the College of Teachers at the Chicago Waldorf School is responsible not only for our faculty’s professional development, but also for curriculum development. Last year the Waldorf School movement received widespread media coverage beginning with a New York Times article about the use of technology in Waldorf schools. Although we were very grateful for the publicity, we felt that the coverage told only half the story. CWS formed a College-mandated Technology Task Force that began to look at how our curriculum addresses the understanding and use of technology, and additionally what further curriculum development is needed in this area.
Community Support, Dedication & Generosity
Once again, our community responded with tremendous support at our spring 2012 Gala. These funds will support both program development and administrative infrastructure for technology needs. The College of Teachers is currently overseeing a process that will distribute and implement the use of the funds that have been reserved for pedagogical purposes. We look forward to letting you know how these exciting plans unfold this year!
Lastly, this past spring we explored the opportunity of moving into a new site at what had been the St. Scholastica Academy High School. A team of incredibly dedicated Board of Trustee members, other parent volunteers and CWS staff members worked tirelessly to see if this was a feasible option for our school. Although it was decided that this was not to be our home, important groundwork was laid in our ongoing search for a permanent home. We were also reminded that our true home is in the community spirit that we- faculty and staff, parents and students- create together out of our love and devotion for Waldorf education.
Thank you for entrusting your children’s education to us and may there be many blessings on our 2012-13 School Year!
Colleen Everhart, Chair
For the College of Teachers