About Te Rā & Te Rāwhiti

Te Rā School and Te Rāwhiti kindergartens are situated on the Kapiti Coast, on the West Coast of the North Island of New Zealand. Kapiti Island is famous for its wildlife sanctuary, home to many endangered species. Our mana whenua are Te Ātiawa, Ngāti Toa Rangatira and Ngāti Raukwa

Early Childhood Education

Te Rāwhiti Kindergarten opened its doors in April 1993, at its original site in Pukerua Bay. Now, there are five licensed and chartered kindergartens, four on the school site at Raumati South and one in Paekākāriki. The kindergartens are run by the Kapiti Waldorf Trust and overseen by our kaiārahi as our centre manager.

Children can be enrolled in one of our kindergarten groups from the age of 3 years through to 6 years. As per our special character, our 6-year-old kindergarten children are on the school roll (year 1). We also offer two weekly playgroup sessions in Raumati South and Paekākāriki and welcome children aged 0 – 4 years and their caregivers.

Primary School

Te Rā School is a state integrated primary school with seven classes, from year 2 to year 8. Te Rā Waldorf School welcomed its first class in January 1996 at the original Paekākāriki site, which is now home to two kindergarten groups. In 1998, the school’s Kapiti Waldorf Trust purchased our current site in Raumati and developed into the present school site over the years.

As a state-integrated school, Te Rā School is governed by our school board and managed through our co-principals, Kerstin Wagner and David Nicoll.

If you are considering enrolling your child with our kindergarten or school, you can find more information about enrolment here.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi / The Treaty Of Waitangi

The SEANZ Fellowship of Steiner/Waldorf schools recognises that Te Tiriti o Waitangi / The Treaty of Waitangi is the constitutional foundation of our society, that the Māori people are the tangata whenua, and that Māori language and culture are a fundamental and living part of Aotearoa New Zealand.

We recognise that Aotearoa New Zealand is a bi-cultural nation and acknowledge that Te Tiriti o Waitangi underpins our learning environment. We are strongly committed to upholding and honouring the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Equity

We celebrate the cultural richness and diversity in Aotearoa. Steiner/Waldorf schools and early childhood centres are responsive to the wider cultural, social and political contexts in which they are located in Aotearoa New Zealand in the 21st Century and beyond.

Our education embraces and honours Aotearoa New Zealand’s bi-cultural heritage and considers all human beings to be free and equal in dignity and rights. While acknowledging Rudolf Steiner’s work, Steiner Education Aotearoa New Zealand works out of an approach of equity and strongly rejects any historical statements which may have been made by Rudolf Steiner and from which inferences of racial prejudice may be made.

All Steiner/Waldorf educational establishments aim to be cultural safe havens for everyone.

Because of this Steiner Education Aotearoa and its member schools are placed in an excellent position to make a prioritised contribution, in collaboration with cultural advisors, to the revival and preservation of the unique indigenous culture and language of this land.

Waldorf Education

Waldorf education has developed out of educational ideas initially given by Rudolf Steiner. The intention is to educate the children’s body, soul, and spirit in a gradual and purposeful process of development. The educational indications given by Rudolf Steiner form the basis of the special character of Waldorf schools around the world and are further developed through going study to ensure they are integrated within the respectives contexts of our time and places.

Anthroposophy is a path of knowledge developed by Rudolf Steiner. In his words, it “seeks to lead the spiritual in the human being to the spiritual in the universe”. While anthroposophy is part of the school ethos, it is not taught to the children.

Waldorf education has the healthy development of the individual child as its central impulse and aims to support and enhance the holistic development of each student. This impulse guides teaching and learning in every class, from kindergarten to our senior classes. Our curriculum gives equal importance to nurturing the physical, emotional, and intellectual aspects of the child, and aims to bring developmentally aligned learning experiences to the students as they move through the school.

The Waldorf special character is not confined to any single aspect of the kindergarten and school’s activity. It is expressed in educational aims, curriculum content, teaching methods, organizational structures and in details of the social and physical environment of the school.

Waldorf education is Christian in its broadest sense, free of dogma or sectarianism, and includes the celebration of Christian and seasonal festivals.

New Zealand Steiner/Waldorf schools are part of a global education movement. There are currently over 1,000 Waldorf schools and 1,600 Kindergartens in 60 countries worldwide. The principles that are fundamental to our education are accessible to, and are adapted to, the needs of different ethnicities, cultures, and religions. Curriculum content allows for the exploration of a wide variety of cultural traditions and world views.