Governance (Organisational Structure)
Michael Oak Waldorf School is based on a foundation of strong parent involvement and teachers who are passionate about educating children.
The school is governed by an active Board of Trustees (“Trustees”) comprising both parents and teachers. The Board acts in accordance with the terms of the Notarial Trust Deed of the Michael Oak School Association.
The College of Teachers (“College”) serves the pedagogical needs of the school, guiding the application of the Steiner curriculum in a modern and changing world. College works as a collective to manage the day-to-day running of the school, the teaching resources and the learning environment.
A number of committees comprising parents, teachers and staff, have key responsibilities to ensure responsible and sustainable governance, and the smooth running of the school. The committees are accountable to Trustees and/or College.
Different Working Groups with more specific mandates report into the various committees.
The Teachers in each school faculty (Kindergarten, Primary and High School) meet regularly and report through to College.
There are two stakeholder forums (Kindergarten & Primary School Parent Forum and High School Parent Forum) – important bodies who meet on a termly basis to share concerns and improve the school.
The Class Links and Class Forum Representatives are parents selected by each class annually, who act as the primary channel of communication between parents, the class teacher and the school.
Each of the above groups of parents and teachers are filled with people putting in time and effort to make the school work. Each is a vital part of the whole, contributing to a vibrant and very special school community .
The Board of Trustees: In terms of the Notarial Trust Deed of the Michael Oak School Association, the Trustees are responsible for ensuring that the objective of the Trust is achieved, which is essentially to organise and promote the teaching of children in accordance with the principles and methods expounded by Rudolf Steiner. The Trustees are also responsible for the long term sustainability and the legal and financial stability of the school. The Trustees comprise of a minimum of six and a maximum of twelve members, at least three of whom need to be teachers. The parent members are selected annually as recommended by the Nominations Committee, which is made up of two members each from College and the current Trustees, and one each from the Parents Forums. The Trustees can co-opt new members in the course of the year where space allows.
School Administrative Body: The Administration’s key responsibilities are the daily operations of the non-pedagogical aspects of the school, including secretarial, accounting, enrolment, marketing and events, as well as providing support for the teaching staff, children and parents in a myriad ways.
BUILDCOM: The Building, Maintenance and Security Committee works to ensure that the buildings, grounds and facilities of the school properties are developed to keep up with the evolving needs of the School Community. This includes that they are safe and secure, well maintained and aesthetically pleasing. The Committee operates as an overseer and a maker of recommendations to the Trustees. The daily management of the school facilities remains the responsibility of the Administration Group.
FINCOM: The Finance & Audit Committee’s key responsibilities are: administration, financial systems and planning, the monthly management accounts and cash flow, the annual budget and recommended fee increases, recommendations to the Trustees on the appointment of the auditors, the annual audit and preparation of the annual financial statements.
High School Parent Forum: The High School Parent (HS) Forum is composed of class representatives from each High School class 8-12 inclusive. The role of the HS Forum is to provide a discussion space for HS parents on High School matters that are not learner-, class-, teacher-, or parent-specific, and to assist and support the HS Faculty with the smooth running and development of the High School. The HS Forum also wishes to facilitate a deeper understanding of the methods and approach of a Waldorf High School. The HS Forum meets once per term. A call for agenda items is sent out to all HS parents & teachers in advance of the termly meeting – all ideas, issues and concerns are welcome.
Note: Each Forum selects a representative to serve on the Trustee’s Nominations Committee to select the new slate of candidates for the Board of Trustees.
Class Links: The Class Links are a vital cog in the life of the school. Each class has a parent or parents (links) who act as liaison between parents, teacher and school. They are a communication channel for the class family and help to organise class events, fundraising and preparation for the annual Fair. The class links are generally selected by the whole class community and the teacher/guardian of that class.
“Receive the children in reverence, educate them in love, and send them forth in freedom.”
“For every one step that you take in the pursuit of higher knowledge, take three steps in the perfection of your own character.”
“Activities demanding manual and bodily skill, such as knitting, leads to the enhancement of the faculty of judgement.”