Educational Support Program

When necessary, Shining Mountain Waldorf School teachers may recommend tutoring, external evaluations or special services for a student, which the school does not provide. These services must be provided at the expense of the parent(s)/guardian(s). If a student is showing significant academic or behavioral needs, the faculty may recommend that a parent/guardian obtain an outside psychoeducational or psychological evaluation to assess the student’s academic and behavioral needs. Parents/guardians may obtain and pay for an assessment through a private provider. The Shining Mountain Waldorf School Educational Support Director can provide information regarding the assessment process.

If through outside testing a student has been determined to have a special educational need they may be eligible for our Educational Support Program. The Educational Support Program at Shining Mountain Waldorf School provides support for students with learning challenges through an Individualized Support Plan (ISP). The results of the testing guide the creation of the ISP, a document similar to a 504 plan, which the teachers use to provide students with accommodations. The Educational Support Director works collaboratively with parents, students, teachers, and School Support Team to implement, troubleshoot, and provide suggestions which will allow students to work with their learning challenges and learn the concepts and skills being taught. The Educational Support Program has successfully supported students with learning disabilities, dyslexia, ADHD, and more.

If the student meets the special education criteria required to obtain special education services, the parents may also decide to obtain private services or to utilize the services offered by the local public school district. If a student needs special equipment because of a physical or educational challenge, the parents may need to obtain and pay for this equipment. If the parents are unable to pay for special services, the parents have the option of enrolling the student in a local public school. The public school districts are mandated to provide a free, appropriate public education to the student, free of charge. Shining Mountain Waldorf School receives no state or federal funds to provide such services.

Educational Support Program Team

Peter Hornbein, PhD Education and Human Development, K-12 Educational Support Director – 

Whitney Johansson, Lower School Educational Support Teacher –

- Sarah Gillis, SMWS Class of 2012 and Sr. Space Operations Engineer at SpaceX

“I feel like one of the really important things that you get out of a Waldorf education is curiosity—curiosity to go and learn and explore what’s out there in the world. I fell into engineering and a path that I don’t think I would have anticipated, but having an arts background where you’re bringing creativity and imagination into problem-solving, there’s a really incredible synergy between those.”

- Sarah Gillis, SMWS Class of 2012 and Sr. Space Operations Engineer at SpaceX

New Beginnings at Shining Mountain Waldorf School: Welcoming Lauren Smith as School Director