Engaged Community

The Challenge of Self-governance in Waldorf Schools

Jon McAlice

Out of print

Quick Look

  • Encourages a shift from a structural to a dynamic approach to school governance
  • Argues for authentic, humble self-governance
  • Addresses issues of trust, self-development and colleagiality

Gives Steiner-Waldorf teachers the tools and language to think honestly and ambitiously about the structure of their school

216 x 138 mm
Lindisfarne Books
Steiner-Waldorf Education
148 pages
Publication date:
23 Jan 2014


'All education is self-education and, as teachers, we can only provide the environment for children's self-education... where children can educate themselves according to their own destinies.' -- Rudolf Steiner

This radical book seeks to shift the governance of Steiner-Waldorf schools from a structural to a dynamic approach. Jon McAlice argues that for teachers to help children 'practice the art of self-education', they must themselves model confident, honest self-governance.

He shows how this ideal can come about by teachers, parents and students working together. He addresses issues of trust and colleagiality, authenticity, and self-development, and provides the tools and language that schools will need to make progress in this important area.


'Jon McAlice has written a book about the challenges of governance in Waldorf schools in the context of the mission of Waldorf education. His book is a meditation on this relationship, urging us to embrace the challenge, free from our preconceived notions of how Waldorf schools 'should' be run: to look at what is needed now, in our current situations, in our individual schools. At the same time, he shines a light on the manifold opportunities for growth, change, and development that are possible when we embrace this challenge.'
-- Kevin Hughes, Waldorf Teacher (26 years, Kimberton Waldorf School, as Class teacher, art teacher, and current member of the 'governing team')


Jon McAlice is a freelance designer and consultant, focusing on the creative use of time and space. He is co-founder of the Center for Contextual Studies in Vermont.

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