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Worldwide Waldorf Education Movement

The first Waldorf school was founded in 1919 in Stuttgart, Germany. It started as a school for the children of workers in the Waldorf-Astoria cigarette factory.

The founder of the school, Rudolf Steiner (1861 – 1925), an Austrian philosopher, scientist and educationist, maintained that children needed an integrated approach to learning rather than learning with the head only. He said that education needed to be based on a far deeper understanding of the human being, reaching children in a meaningful way at the level of their development.

Imagination, the Arts, creative thinking, handskills and a sensitive relationship to nature featured very strongly in a developmental curriculum from pre-school to Grade 12.

Soon further schools were founded in Europe, and today Waldorf schools exist in over 50 countries throughout the world. In South Africa there are currently 25 pre-schools, 18 primary schools and 5 high schools, across different communities of our multi-cultural society.

Beginnings of our Centre

The Centre for Creative Education was founded in January 1993 in response to the educational crisis that existed in our country at the time. The Centre found funds from a broad range of sponsors to train teachers, including students from disadvantaged communities, in the creative approaches of Waldorf Education. We emphasized empowerment and healing in children who grow up under difficult circumstances. The Kairos Eurythmy Training Programme began in 1998 and offered a diploma, which was upgraded to a Bachelor degree status in 2004. Since 1999 the Centre has worked on the establishment of the Zenzeleni School for Creative Education in Mongesi Road, Khayelitsha. Today Zenzeleni has about 250 learners in Grades 1 through 7.

At the same time, realising the tremendous importance of Early Childhood Development, the Centre embarked on training women in township communities – who care for and educate children in their educare centres – in integrative and holistic approaches. The Centre's Educare department currently has over 100 women in training every year.

Teacher-training courses were offered since the Centre's inception, both in primary and kindergarten (pre-school). In 2004 the Centre gained full accreditation from the Department of Education to offer the Bachelor of Education degree in Foundation and Intermediate phase (Grades R to 6). Accreditation for pre-school education (the National Diploma in Early Childhood