I am DESPERATLY seeking advice. I am not the typical parent. I do not like rigid traditional academics although I do believe that tradition is a good thing. (Which is why I am considering religous school even though our family is agnostic)
My 12 year old has always attended a Waldorf school and we have LOVED it. There is NOTHING like it!! However, my husband is a University professor and we had to relocate for a job. We are now in South Florida, Ft. Lauderdale. We enrolled our child in a Montessori school. (No offence to Montessori folks) but we do not like this education at all.
Here is a fundemental problem, espically for a child not raised in Montessori, while I recognize the value and principal of "self-directed" learning or "co-op" learning. The REALITY must also be ideal.
In order for a child to succeed in the socratic environment, they must be taught HOW. In other words, it has to be modeled and then the children can break away into their own groups without a teacher sitting with them. Initially though, I feel a teacher needs to be present to essentialy teach them how to utilize this environment.
I won't go into the details here, although if anyone is curious I will answer any questions you may have about the variation of waldorf vs. montessori (I think it is vast and it would better serve parents if they understood this, the two are often times considered similar because they are both "alternative")
However I will say this: There are two ways to arrive at a destination (making a metaphore to a car trip) you can take the highway, and the drive will lack in scenery and expirence but you will get there or you can take the scenic back road and enjoy.
Up to this point my son has had the pleasure of the scenic route and he is doing very well, not just academically (Which people over-value because while important the whole person is JUST as valuable) still, he entered this new school at a 7-8 grade level, which at their school is really a 8-9 grade level. This was from waldorf. He also loves music, himself, the earth, his friends. In other words, he is not just smart, he is happy.
Now, he is doing terriable and we are doing homework all night and all weekend. I have called 100 schools and searched 100 hours on the internet for a solution. I am open to anything. I found a school in miami that talks about the "whole child" It is called the Cushman School. However, this would mean spending 5 hours of car time each day, I have a one year old also and I am not sure that is a good solution for either child, to spend so much of their life in the car.