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Verona - A Growing School in Northern Italy

Italy: "Verona" province is situated in the lowlands of northern Italy. In the vicinity of Lake Garda lies the village "Mozzecane". Here a first Waldorf initiative began in 1995, supported by a teacher and a number of mothers, looking for alternative education. The Verona region is characterised by the presence and influence of the catholic church and Waldorf education represents one of the very few real alternatives to mainstream education.

The first life stage of the school development was characterised by the need to overcome many obstacles. In particular, the school faced difficulties in forming a qualified faculty, in realising the social community of parents and in ability to stimulate a path of common growth. For many years, advancements were made only through very small steps. But in 2006 the renovation and expansion of an acquired building finally enabled the school to lay the foundation for solid development.

Since then, Verona Waldorf School has grown to become a strong Waldorf school, with a motivated and qualified faculty and a sound economic and financial situation – although many families and businesses in the region have been struggling since the financial crisis. Surrounded by farmland, the new colourful and organically shaped school building is quite a distinguishing sight. Currently around 140 students attend the kindergarten and the school.There is climate of enthusiasm and participation in the parents’ community that is made of entrepreneurs, free lance professionals, white collar employees, but also a number of unemployed families.

Besides plays and performances of students, the Christmas bazaar on the first Sunday of Advent is the favourite annual festival of the school community. On this day the school is bustling with people shopping for student-made Christmas gifts or enjoying some good food and warm drinks.

For the future there are plans to create a competence centre that supports parents according to principles of Waldorf pedagogy in the education of children during the first seven years. Furthermore, the school wants to expand with the opening of an upper school.

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