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ERIC Number: ED574645
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Dec-7
Pages: 139
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 37
Growing a Waldorf-Inspired Approach in a Public School District
Friedlaender, Diane; Beckham, Kyle; Zheng, Xinhua; Darling-Hammond, Linda
Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education
This report documents the practices and outcomes of Alice Birney, a public K-8 Waldorf-Inspired School in Sacramento City Unified School District (SCUSD). This study highlights how such a school addresses students' academic, social, emotional, physical, and creative development. Birney students outperform similar students in SCUSD on several behavioral and academic measures. The study also examines how a district supports alternative models of education while working to ensure equitable access to a high quality education for all its students. This study provides an opportunity to learn from alternative approaches to schooling to help surface deeply embedded, often unchallenged, assumptions about public education and expand our understanding of the purpose of education and the practices that support the development of the whole child and deep student learning in public schools. This mixed methods study was conducted over the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years. Researchers interviewed nearly 40 educators, students and parents, and engaged in almost 40 observations of classrooms, out-of-classroom activities, school events, and teacher trainings. Quantitative research included an examination of multiple years of student record data from SCUSD including: (1) student demographic data; (2) student standardized test scores; (3) student attendance and behavioral data; and (4) graduation data. Quantitative analysis of student record data as well as qualitative analysis of interviews with Birney graduates, reveals that Birney successfully supports students' development. In particular, Birney produces greater gains for its low-income and African American and Latino students than for its school population as a whole. The following are appended: (1) Data Sources and Methodology; (2) Main Lesson Examples from Second and Sixth Grade; (3) Sample Lesson Planning Template; and (4) The Expansion of Waldorf-Inspired Schools in SCUSD. [For the research brief, "Practices of Waldorf-Inspired Schools. Research Brief," see ED574646.]
Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education. Barnum Center 505 Lasuen Mall, Stanford, CA 94305. Tel: 650-725-8600; Fax: 650-736-1682; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Rudolf Steiner College
Authoring Institution: Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE)
Identifiers - Location: California (Sacramento)