SWSF Accreditation Process
From July 2022, the SWSF now has an Accreditation Process for Teacher Training Courses. The application pack can be downloaded here.
Teacher Education Programmes
There are many pathways to becoming a teacher in the Waldorf education movement in the UK.
Most Steiner Waldorf schools will expect that teachers have completed or (if an experienced teacher) be in the process of completing a specialist Waldorf teacher education course, such as those listed below. Other teaching experience and qualifications, such as a PGCE, are also recognised and QTS is increasingly in demand by schools. Teachers in the kindergarten must have an accredited ‘full and relevant’ qualification recognised by the Department for Education (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/early-years-qualifications-finder) such as that provided by the kindergarten trainings listed below. It is important for overseas students to check that completion of the course of their choice provides a qualification that is applicable in their home country.
Continuing professional development for teachers is offered within schools and by the SWSF.
SWSF supports the Association of Steiner Waldorf Teacher Educators (ASWTE) in its co-ordination of teacher education in the UK. ASWTE member courses are listed below. ASWTE does not itself accredit courses or provide quality assurance and not all courses are accredited. Where there is accreditation this is awarded externally by independent organisations.
University Teacher Education Courses.
A Postgraduate Diploma in Waldorf Education and Creative Pedagogies jointly delivered by Bath Spa University and the Waldorf Learning Foundation. https://www.bathspa.ac.uk/courses/pg-waldorf-education-and-creative-pedagogies/
Validated Teacher Training Courses (Early Years)
Crossfields Institute Level 4 Diploma in Steiner Waldorf Early Childhood Studies (Early Years Educator/EYE). VRQ: 603/7741/0 – and Level 5 Diploma in Steiner Waldorf Early Childhood Studies – Leadership and Management. QRN: 603/7796/3.
This training leads to a Level 4 diploma in Steiner Waldorf Early Childhood Studies which meets the Early Years Educator level 3 criteria. It is Ofqual regulated and awarded by Crossfields Institute. Crossfields Institute is responsible for approval, ongoing delivery, and centre quality assurance of this qualification. This qualification is delivered on a part time basis over two years.
The Level 4 qualification can be followed by a one-year Level 5 early years qualification suitable for leadership and management in a Steiner Waldorf setting and providing a stepping stone to higher level qualifications. The Level 5 is based around a full-time (or 2-year part-time) placement in a Steiner Waldorf kindergarten and taught sessions.
Both diplomas are recognised by IASWECE as international Steiner Waldorf early childhood qualifications.
The course is delivered through two independent organisations:
London Steiner Kindergarten Training Company, at Rudolf Steiner House, Regents Park, London, with residentials in Gloucestershire. The course begins annually towards the end of August.
NESWEC (North of England Steiner Waldorf Early Childhood Studies Programme), at York Steiner School, with residentials in Stourbridge, W. Midlands. The course begins annually in October.
Crossfields Institute Level 3 Diploma in Holistic Baby and Child Care (Early Years Educator) 603/7739/2
This training integrates Steiner early childhood studies and the Pikler approach whilst meeting Level 3 Early Years Educator criteria. With a unique birth to three emphasis it is an ideal qualification for those wishing to care for children as childminders, and parent and child group and parent support group leaders. In mainstream care settings the Holistic Baby and Child Care qualification is suitable for those wishing to care for children from birth to five. Successful completion of the course and all assignments will lead to the Crossfields Institute Level 3 Diploma in Holistic Baby and Child Care (Early Years Educator) (603/7739/2) qualification. The blended learning course, is part time over 14 months, is offered by Emerson College. The course days and weekends will take place partly online as well as held at Rudolf Steiner House, London, with residentials at Emerson College, East Sussex.
The training is recognised by IASWECE as an international Steiner Waldorf early childhood B-3 qualification.
Association of Steiner Waldorf Teacher Educators (AWSTE):
ASWTE is a group of Steiner Waldorf teacher education courses operating in the UK. Representatives of the courses meet regularly to provide peer support and mentoring, and support the to co-ordination of a national strategy. A representative of SWSF attends those meetings. ASTWE is not itself an accrediting body.
ASWTE members providing accredited training courses:
Lower, Middle and Upper School:
Edinburgh Steiner Teacher Education Course
Three year part time course running all day Saturdays 8.45 – 6.30 during term time.
The course has been third-party credit-rated by the University of Edinburgh. It carries an SCQF Level 10 rating, commensurate with other Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programmes and will be subject to annual review via Quality Assurance processes overseen by the University of Edinburgh. Graduates are eligible to apply for registration as a teacher with the General Teaching Council of Scotland for an individual school in Scotland (Named School Only Registration). Teachers completing the Edinburgh course can also teach in schools in other parts of the UK and elements of the course can be accessed through distance learning.
You Tube: https://youtu.be/x98l5Azrjf4
Facebook: https://fb.watch/5K37mN0G16/ @edsteiner.teachertraining
ASWTE members providing non-accredited teacher education courses:
North of England Steiner Teacher Training (NESTT)
A two year Part time course taught primarily at the York Steiner School. For more information, please contact the course Administrator, Judy Gray.
Address: c/o 15 School Lane, Bishopthorpe, York, YO23 2RE
Michael Hall ‘At the Heart of Teaching’
The Heart of Teaching is a school based educational course for adults at Michael Hall in East Sussex; this is a one or two years full time course, depending on previous experience. Students have daily hands-on experience in the classroom and teacher/tutors who are specialist in their subjects, which include Study, Theory and Practice, Art, Blackboard Drawing, Bothmer Gym, Handwork, Eurythmy, Maths, Science, Music, Singing, Recorders, Speech, Storytelling, Bushcraft and SEN.
Non-ASWTE training courses
Other courses (non-accredited):
Align For Learning
Align for Learning is a training seminar designed specifically to assist teachers in identifying and assessing learning differences as well as to design and implement effective classroom differentiation interventions. The foundations of the course are based on the pedagogical insights of Rudolf Steiner however it will also use tools from current psychological and neuroscientific research and educational theory and practice as well as the legal context of SEND today. The course is designed for anyone working within early years, primary and/or secondary settings and will prepare students to be able to undertake the tasks relevant to Special Education with confidence and professionalism.
Bothmer Movement Training
Bothmer Movement has been taught and practiced all over the world for 100 years.
Specific movements, hands-on techniques and practices are used to strengthen our relationship to our body and the space and people around us. Movement and space can be engaged with in many simple, profound ways: singing, playing games, connection to nature, laughter – we instinctively know the benefit.
Workshops and short courses are designed to support Steiner Waldorf gymnastics and games teachers in their profession. The courses are also applicable to all Waldorf teachers and parents to gain insights into pedagogical approaches to play and games.
Bothmer Movement offers an experiences of the exercises themselves, an embodied understanding of child development, a deepening of our imagination, realignment of the body that works towards healthier physical movements and of course games, play, social activities and much more.
Most training takes place at Michael Hall School, Forest Row, Sussex.
Contact address: 21 Verbania Way, East Grinstead, West Sussex, RH19 3UP
Tel: +44 (0)7738 855 997
Steiner Education Diploma
A Creative Research Approach to Teacher Training by Robert Rose
The idea of “The Teacher as a Creative Researcher” might conjure up the image of the lonely researcher exploring dry old text books in a library. The idea in the context of this Diploma is very different. Research is meant here as a creative activity which can happen in any kind of media, such as in practicing arts, music, designing curricula or in philosophical ideas, moral virtues, meditation and personal transformation. The aim of this Diploma is to engage participants in this diversity of media and expand the notion of research particularly in the context of Steiner Education.
Sixteen weekend seminars over two years, eight modules, based in South Devon Steiner School.
Distance and flexible learning options.
Relevant post-graduate education:
Crossfields Institute Level 7 Diploma in Philosophy and Practice of Integrative Education
Now in its fourth year, this part time, post-graduate level programme provides a unique opportunity for Waldorf inspired educators working in a variety of contexts. With modules dedicated to Waldorf education, to integrative education and to personal and professional development, students are enabled to work on an aspect of their own practice whilst also engaging in deep, underlying questions about the human being and about human learning and development. The programme runs over 12 months and combines short residential intensives with online learning. It is suitable for those in full-time work.
PPIE now includes a leadership pathway for those holding, or aspiring to hold, leadership roles in schools. In this pathway students are supported to understand fundamental leadership and self-leadership principles that enhance transparency, responsiveness and competence.
The programme aims to inspire openness, innovation, creative thinking and personal transformation as a basis for successful teaching, learning and leading.
Ruskin Mill Trust and University College Lillehammer:
Master in Special Education: Practical Skills Transformative Learning
Through practice enhanced research and research enhanced practice, this masters explores alternative approaches to special education pioneered by Ruskin Mill Trust. It seeks to explore the pedagogic potential of craft, ecology, biodynamic ecology and movement.
The programme provides a unique opportunity for teachers using practical skills to reflect upon, evaluate, research and develop their practice in relation to teaching people with special needs.
It is an innovative partnership between Ruskin Mill Trust and University College Lillehammer that crosses borders, disciplines and professions to create a transfomative dialogue between research and practice.