"Being personally acquainted with a number of Waldorf students, I can say that they come closer to realizing their own potential than practically anyone I know."  

--Professor Joseph Weizenbaum, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Waldorf Graduates

Surveys and Studies of the Results of Waldorf Education

There are numerous studies emerging on Waldorf School Graduates. Excerpts from two recently-published surveys are available on AWSNA's website. Click on the links below for some insight into the lifetime gifts delivered by a Waldorf Education.

A survey spanning more than 60 years of North American Waldorf graduates, providing a detailed picture of where Waldorf students go and what they do after high school.
-Survey of Waldorf Graduates II

A parallel survey of Waldorf alumni from German, Swiss, and Swedish Waldorf School,with comparison to the North American Study. Includes a re-written version of the pamphlet "The Results of Waldorf Education".
-Survey of Waldorf Graduates III


An Essay by James Shipman
History Department, Marin Academy
San Rafael, California

[Explanatory Note: The Marin Waldorf School ends at Eighth Grade. A number of its graduates have gone on to the Marin Academy---not a Waldorf school---for their secondary education.]

What I like about the Waldorf School is, quite simply, its graduates. As a high school teacher at Marin Academy, I have seen a number of students who come from your program, and I can say that in all cases they have been remarkable, bright, energetic and involved.

One of my duties is to teach World Civilizations to incoming 9th graders, so I tend to be one of the first people who encounter a Waldorf graduate. My course is not like the standard History of Western Civilization course, but rather requires the student to investigate the deeper aspects of the world's cultures. For example, we are not so much interested in the chronology of Chinese emperors and the dynasties to which they belonged; instead we want to explore and understand the principles of Taoism and Confucianism and how these underlying philosophies helped to shape the Chinese culture. We aren't so much interested in memorizing names and dates as we are in understanding what motivates people, and why they make the choices they do.

I find the Marin Waldorf graduates to be entirely willing to undertake this sort of investigation. They are eager to learn. They do not complain when I assign, for example, a passage from the Bhagavad Gita and then ask them what they think. Indeed, that is what I find most remarkable about Waldorf kids: they have been taught to think; thinking is an "ok" activity for them to engage in. I think they intrinsically understand the difference between thinking about an issue and merely memorizing "the right answer" for the test.

Waldorf students are not simply bookworms, however. In fact one could find Waldorf kids completely involved in the theatre, the arts, music and sports here at Marin Academy. What I see here is an integration of the faculties---mental, emotional, physical and spiritual---which, when coupled with the overtones of personality, unite to form unique individuals. Marin Waldorf students to me are interesting people. They can converse intelligently on almost any issue, because they have been taught to examine. They can be enormously sympathetic to almost anyone's plight because they have been taught to tolerate. They can gracefully dance or score a goal because they have been taught to move. They can circulate among the various groups on campus and engage in a variety of activities because they have been taught to harmonize.

We use the word "wholistic" or "whole person" to describe the kind of person I have outlined above. Whatever the term used, it is apparent to me that the Marin Waldorf School consciously turns out calm, centered and confident students. For my part, I deeply appreciate the school's efforts, because based on their work, I get to enjoy those students who come to Marin Academy. It is with humility that I note that Waldorf students allow me and my colleagues to influence them.
It is as if somewhere in their early years of schooling they somehow got the idea that learning is a lifelong enterprise.

Site Created By James F. Roberts IV