Israel: The Aviv Educational Centre offers preschool and elementary Waldorf education for the children of Tel-Aviv. Located on the border of Tel Aviv and Jaffa, the center opened its doors in 2010 and has since grown to provide education to over 200 children in three preschools (serving children between the ages of two and seven) and a growing elementary school that currently houses the first five of the eight planned grades.
The centre was established as an initiative of a group of parents from the Tel Aviv-Jaffa metropolitan area who were interested in providing Waldorf education for their children and could not find a suitable establishment in the city. They joined together to form the Aviv Association for Promoting Waldorf Education in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, which now operates the school as a non-profit organization. The Aviv Educational Centre has been developing along with the children who attend it, opening a new class each year.
In 2011 the preschools and the elementary school were recognized by the Ministry of Education of Israel, a first step towards full recognition and the status of a fully funded public school. Until the Tel Aviv Municipality recognizes the school as well, it holds the status of a "Non-Official Recognized School", only partially funded by the government and therefore budgeted mostly by tuition paid by the parents. This unique and often difficult situation has led to a closely-knit community of parents who fully partake in the ongoing operational management of the school, recently renovating an old building and single handedly turning it into a beautiful haven and the new home of the expanding center. At the same time. the Association is committed to maintain the autonomy of the educational staff in the development of the school's pedagogical infrastructure and the ongoing day-to-day educational management.
Pluralism serves as an ethical compass in shaping the identity of the Aviv Educational Centre. It is open to all residents of the city, both Jewish and Arab. We believe that developing an ongoing dialogue regarding all aspects and nuances of the physical and human environment in Tel Aviv-Jaffa is a leading objective in our education. We are also committed to the integration of children with special needs in our classes, as we believe in equal chances for all who are part of the fabric of our society, understanding the amazing advantages and lessons this integration creates for all children.
From the day the school was established we have been working to raise money for scholarships to help families that have difficulty paying the tuition fees. In addition to these ongoing efforts, we remain committed to public involvement and action and are striving to anchor the school in the city so as to promote a new educational agenda for every boy and girl in Tel Aviv-Jaffa.
The Aviv Educational Centre offers an exceptional combination of an educational staff with a particularly humane approach to children, the professional experience and ongoing pedagogical supervision from senior Waldorf educators in Israel and the excitement provided by a growing community that is singlehandedly designing its own future.