How to reduce the conflict between compliance and pedagogy in Steiner schools

How to reduce the conflict between compliance and pedagogy in Steiner schools

Presented by Murray Hopkins

Compliance with government regulations is often seen as diminishing the very pedagogical outcomes Steiner Schools are striving for. At worst, this is seen as a kind of “battle” between two opposing forces. At best, some kind of temporary “balance” emerges which puts at risk the compliance requirements and diminishes the pedagogical outcomes.

Clearly, both things are important. Compliance keeps the school open from a regulatory perspective and without the pedagogical outcomes the school would not be a Steiner school.

Both the “battle” approach and the “balance” approach can result in:

  1. diminished outcomes for both Compliance and Steiner Pedagogy;
  2. conflict – both within individuals and within the school as a whole.

There is a path out of this conundrum: to manage the “polarity” between Compliance and Pedagogy instead of trying to solve it using the common approaches. Managing a polarity is a process with great value to individuals and schools, not to mention the raison d’être, the students!

In this practical 2-hour Zoom session we will:

  • learn how to tell the difference between a “problem to be solved” and a polarity;
  • explore some polarities we live inside – and that live inside us;
  • understand the benefits that can accrue from managing a polarity;
  • identify a few common polarities present in Steiner Schools;
  • work together using the Compliance / Pedagogy polarity as an example;
  • more generally:
    • learn how to map and leverage the upsides of both poles while minimising the downsides of both poles;
    • identify the early warning signs of an over emphasis on one pole over another;
    • learn a process for managing the expression of a polarity over time

Murray Hopkins

Murray Hopkins has been working to develop organisations in the public and private sectors for the past few decades. He has been involved with Steiner Education since the 1980’s having held numerous positions including more than a decade as a board member of Kindlehill Steiner School, and as Business Manager and Operations Manager at two Steiner schools. In 2020 he co-delivered the SEA Mastering Difficult Conversations Workshops. In 2021 he delivered a Managing Polarities workshop for SEA. In 2022 he facilitated a round of ‘Rebuilding School Communities’ conversations for SEA. In 2023 he presented Difficult Conversations workshops at GLaM.

This workshops is for school Board directors, school leaders and leadership teams, College members, and for those working with compliance in Steiner Education Australia Member schools and Associate Member organisations.  

When: Tuesday 24 October, 2023 2pm – 4pm AEST (1pm – 3pm QLD; 11am – 1pm WA)

Cost: $25.00 + GST

Places are limited, and need to be booked in advance. Please click the button below to secure your place.

Register now:  Register Here



24 Oct 2023
VENUE: Online workshop