Fall 2020 Cohort: Session 5
October 9–14, 2020
Antioch University New England
Now accepting applications for our spring 2021 cohort, convening April 2021, Friday-Wednesday. Apply now
Waldorf schools are self-administered, which means that most decisions are made on-site by faculty, staff, and trustees. This allows for policies that are child-centered and responsive to the changing needs of a local community and curriculum that corresponds to the child’s changing consciousness. Those who know the children make the decisions. However, site-based management also presents significant challenges. Sometimes faculty members are selected for leadership roles based on their pedagogical expertise and the confidence of their colleagues but without necessary skills in communication, group dynamics, facilitation, conflict resolution etc. Likewise, a school often hires administrative personnel with expertise in finances, development, admissions, marketing, etc who have the needed skill sets but do not have a background in Waldorf education or philosophy, Anthroposophy, that guides decision making in a Waldorf school. There is a need for greater role clarity so groups, committees, and individuals work collaboratively rather than at cross purposes. Antioch University New England is pleased to announce a new learning experience custom-designed to bridge the gaps between pedagogy and administrative expertise.
- Administrative staff who have expertise in specific areas of school admin but need more background in Waldorf, Anthroposophy, collaboration and group dynamics.
- Waldorf school leaders such as faculty chair, college chair, committee chairs etc who are experienced in pedagogy but now have been asked to serve in a variety of leadership roles and need additional skill sets.
- Administrators from Camphill communities and other non-profit ventures based upon Anthroposophy.
We hope participants will experience first hand the kind of collaboration needed in schools yet without the high stakes of their own place of employment. The design of the program will allow both groups (one and two above) to interact and even inform/learn from one another but at the same time have separate sessions based upon the needs of administrators or faculty leaders.
We’re mindful of time commitments and the limited funds available to schools, we’ve designed an economical, non-credit bearing experience focused on the working school leader, balancing face to face experiential learning, mentoring and online learning. The entire program lasts just 13 months with only 10 days required residency (in two 5- day institutes) away from work and family. We will foster a retreat-like atmosphere for each residency while at the same time expecting a high level of focus and discourse.
Session 1 A 5-day residency in Keene, NH. Participants will travel on a Friday and be welcomed Friday night with introductions and social activities. Classes will be held from 9-5 on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday with a half day on Wednesday so participants can travel home Wednesday afternoon. Thursday morning will be a required rest and reflection time with re-entry into the life of the school Thursday afternoon in time for faculty and staff meetings. Cost: $1600
Session 2 Participants may choose a five day Renewal course offered by the Center for Anthroposophy in Wilton, NH, either the last week of June or first week of July depending of awareness of personal/professional need: there are usually a dozen or more courses to choose from in the arts, anthroposophy, pedagogy etc. Cost: $500 (Those who have recently done a Renewal course may ask to excused for this session)
Session 3 Online independent study will focus on a series of readings targeting one of the two threads (foundation studies or school leadership) and online postings of reflections on the readings, with emphasis on the question, “How can this material help me better navigate my journey in a Waldorf school?”
Session 4 Phone and email mentoring. Each participant will be matched with an experienced mentor in his/her field and will be expected to spend at least one hour per week in a distant mentoring session. These conversations will be confidential and the only verification will be that the mentor will be required to affirm that at least ten one hour sessions occurred and the dates of the meetings. Cost: $500 paid directly to mentor
Session 5 A final 5-day institute in Keene, NH. Further content will be offered on a variety of themes, experiences of the past year will be shared and processed with an emphasis on case studies and problem solving. The final morning will include a graduation and celebration. Participants will be awarded a certificate of completion from AUNE Cost: $1600
Total cost: $4,200.
Please note that these charges fall over two fiscal years. Travel, room and board are not included. Some financial assistance may be available. Please contact us directly to discuss your situation. A discount of 20% will be given to a school when two or more individuals participate and/or are AUNE alumni.
Applicants will be accepted on a rolling basis, first come first served. Required information for applicants includes a summary of relevant past formal learning and work experience, a brief self assessment of the candidates’ strengths and challenges as a school leader, and a letter of assurance from board or faculty leadership supporting the candidate’s participation in the program.
Session 1 Schedule:
Saturday- Tuesday (Friday evening and Wed morning partial days with different schedule):
8:30 Morning opening and review
8:45 Eurythmy in the Workplace – exercises that support learning
10:55 Morning Presentation
11:00 Focus Area Workshops
1:45 Focus Area Workshops
3:15 Applied Anthroposophy/Color Exercises – two days for each
4:30 Eurythmy in the workplace, ending at 5:30
Morning Presentations by Torin Finser:
- Role Clarity in light of Waldorf School Governance and Organizational Dynamics
- Strategic Leadership vs tactical decision making: alignment of accountability, authority and responsibility in the context of a threefold model
- Agreements, including personal conduct, the importance of process and policy development, individual freedom vs. group accountability…HR issues (facing in)
- Entrepreneurship, innovation, marketing, enrollment and community development (facing out)
- Collaborative Leadership and the search for common ground/consensus
Focus Areas – workshops held in two sessions, late morning and early afternoon, emphasis on practical skills. Participants select a different topic each day:
- Threefolding, from theory to practice
- Basic HR best practices and most common errors
- Financial management for non finance leaders
- Group dynamics and process
- Meeting facilitation
- Parent relations
- Developing a donor circle and philanthropy
- Addressing biographical issues toward emotional health
- Shared principles and core principles at the heart of Waldorf Education
- Strategic planning and school development
- Diversity and inclusion, cultural, religious, gender and orientation issues
- Having that difficult conversation
- Dynamics in the history of American education
- Case studies
Please note that the Summer Renewal course will focus on Communication and Conflict Resolution.
Late Afternoon Sessions:
Participants will have two afternoon session on each of the following:
- Applied Anthroposophy – methods for understanding and working with governance and leadership issues
- Color Exercises for personal and group development
Torin Finser, Program Director
Lisa Mahar, Program Advisor
Laura Thomas, Administrator
Potential Adjuncts and Mentors:
Lisa Mahar, Lead Administrator at Monadnock Waldorf School
Milan Daler, Administrator Center for Anthroposophy
John Cunningham, Social Artist
Leonore Russell, Consultant, Eurthymy in the Workplace
Tim Connolly, Consultant & Former Waldorf Teacher & Administrator
Karine Munk Finser, Antioch University New England Teaching Faculty, Center for Anthroposophy Renewal Courses Coordinator
Deb Abrahams-Dematte, Development Director Anthroposophical Society
Ted Curtin, Waldorf Teacher & Faculty Leader, Cape Cod Waldorf School
Caleb Buckley, Administrator, San Francisco Waldorf School; Former Administrator, Yuba Valley Charter School
Donna Newberg-Long, Waldorf School Consultant
Beverly Amico, Executive Director of Advancement Association of Waldorf Schools of North America
Onat Sanchez- Schwartz, Camphill Administrator Rainbow Rosenbloom, Consultant
Leah Kedar, Consultant and Mentor
More information on course content and a list of faculty will become available as we continue our program planning with the help of friends in DANA, AWSNA and experienced school leaders.
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