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Minority representation in Waldorf – Part 3

Why is minority representation in the Waldorf movement is so low?

In addition to the "Waldorf schools are no better, though no worse, than anywhere else in society" reasons that I outlined in my last post, there may be additional things particular to the nature of Waldorf schools that additionally work to discourage minorities from applying. This area, too, requres more inviestigation. One area to look would be curriculum.

Numerous people have commented on how the grade school curriculum appears to have a strongly western and European bias, especially in the history curriculum. Other people have denied that this is the case, but the perception seems to arise spontaneously with some frequency. In the schools with which I am familiar the Eurocentric bias is not nearly as pronounced as some people claim, but there is doubtless some validity to the concern. It is also important to note that the subject matter is not central to what makes Waldorf education; the pedagogy is adaptable to multiple different cultures, as the success of Waldorf schools in Africa, Asia, and South America attest. But it is and interesting question to what degree American Waldorf schools have adapted to the changing ethnic composition of the country. It seems to me that where changes have been introduced, they have tended to trail public opinion rather than lead it. Now I am certainly not calling for a complete overhaul of the entire grade school curriculum, but apropos the question of why there are so few minorities at most Waldorf schools, that may be an area to examine. Doubtless there are more.

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