Seven years ago, the Saltwater Waldorf School was a budding dream for four parents who lived in the Comox Valley.
At that time, the school began with small classes in two of the founders’ homes. Since those early days, Saltwater has become an accredited member of the worldwide Waldorf school movement, and has met the BC Ministry of Education’s learning outcomes for each grade. In 2011, after extensive renovations, the school opened its doors in a repurposed building in Courtenay’s Tin Town neighbourhood. A second building was purchased and renovated in 2014. Today, the Comox Valley’s only Waldorf school is proud to be expanding again.
Renovations will be done over the summer months, as part of a long-term plan to create more classrooms. Currently the school has 80 students from preschool to Grade 7. With the expansion, the school will be adding a multi-purpose room, a parent room and space for all grades classes under one roof. The “Hemlock Building” at 2398 Rosewall Crescent will now house all students from grades 1-7.
The “Cedar Building” at 2311 Rosewall Crescent will continue to house the popular early years program for preschool children aged three to five, a Kindergarten class, and an aftercare program until 5 p.m. The school is also reintroducing a Parent and Tot program, which introduces Waldorf-style learning to families with children ages one to three.
Waldorf is the fastest growing educational movement worldwide. Despite being a century old, the value of Waldorf philosophies and methods are increasingly recognized today. In the BC Ministry of Education’s recent curriculum update, many Waldorf approaches have been recognized and incorporated for their value to the developmental psychology and learning styles of children.
Like other Waldorf schools, Saltwater is dedicated to nurturing the whole child, and the school’s carefully-paced curriculum is rich in the arts, music, movement and contact with nature. The school offers small classes and plenty of outdoor time in nearby parks. More information on Saltwater School and Waldorf in general can be found on the school’s website: www.saltwaterschool.com.