Youth Initiative High School provides holistic Waldorf-inspired education for grades 9-12, striving to integrate “head, heart and hands” (thinking, feeling and willing) into the fabric of school life. Parents, students and faculty work together to encourage and assist students in becoming free thinkers, and in maturing, into active, response-able, empowered participants in the greater society. The school, its students, families and faculty strives to be of service to the larger community.
VISION OF YIHS
Our vision is to become a vibrant, empowering, Free Waldorf high school. We find the Steiner view of the developing adolescent useful; this model sees ages 14-18 as a time when young people ideally move from outwardly imposed authority towards individual freedom and personal responsibility. We will create and maintain a vessel, a community where this growth can occur in an organic way while providing students with the experiences and tools (academic, artistic and practical) to find their way to meaningful work and relationships, both social and vocational.
Faculty, students, and families are partners in learning; exhibiting mutual respect, shared joy in learning, cooperation, and caring. We facilitate individual student talents and personal growth, their imagination, passion, and love of the arts. Our rich and challenging course of study integrates academics, the arts, physical and practical life skills. Our small school community encourages students to become all their individual destinies call them to be.
The Youth Initiative High School will not discriminate based on race, creed, gender, sexual orientation, or age. Youth Initiative High School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.
Guiding Principles of the School
- Mutual Respect: Students agree to respect and honor other students and their teachers by staying alert, offering respectful challenges and arguments, asking thoughtful questions, listening well, and playing their part in the learning community. Teachers agree to honor each student’s individuality, listening well to student concerns and questions, seeking to enrich each student’s learning experience. Whenever possible, students will be given the opportunity to meet prospective teachers and have input into their hiring. Students, parents and faculty all agree that we are all representatives of our school and our behavior reflects on our reputation. We will be good stewards of the resources available to us including the Landmark Center and PRWS.
- Self Knowing: Our school is founded on the assumption that each being has the right and responsibility to strive for freedom, full self-awareness, and self-actualization. We encourage each person to come forth in a full expression of their authenticity combined with a strong respect for the rights of the whole. Students need to be aware of their responsibility to the school community, as well as their inherent rights within it. Our curriculum provides the prerequisites for achieving this state of individual freedom.
- Wholeness and Interconnectedness: Our school fosters an awareness of the interconnectedness of all life, a curriculum that relates all subjects to each other and to the human being. Academic courses are taught with as much practical application as possible. Art, Music, and Movement maximize intellectual development while engendering sensitivity and a rich feeling life, helping to develop the capacity to discern the good, the beautiful and the true. Foreign Languages provide a context for the exercise of memory, a point of entry into different cultures, and an opportunity to view reality from different points of view. Through practical application of manual skills we support and help to develop the diversity and sustainability of our local rural culture.
- Independent Waldorf School: We strive to use the principles of Steinerʼs work with spiritual science and the Waldorf School indications in such a way as to personally own them. We are not interested in becoming wedded to an ideology that doesn’t live in us. All our decisions are made from a point of deep consideration, honoring each person’s integrity and personal experience. We seek to maintain an independent cultural institution, free from outside control.
- Student/Faculty Mentoring of Each Other: Students and Faculty will actively foster an environment where all are encouraged to seek and offer help to other students and faculty members.
- Financial Co-Responsibility: Students and families are responsible for participating in the funding activities of the school. Families agree to assume their fair share of the financial responsibility for the school through a combination of tuition payments, cash gifts and gifts of time and effort. We seek to make this education available for every student and family who desires it.
Youth Initiative is about building the students’ character, their ability to think, feel and act with love and purpose. We do this within the context of a community, where people depend on each other and collaborate for the good of the whole. We see adolescence as a process of developing autonomy: a transition from outwardly imposed authority to inner authority.
We facilitate individual student talents and personal growth, their imagination and passion and their love of the arts. Our rich challenging course of study integrates academics, the arts, and practical life skills.
Students are asked to take on meaningful responsibility, to help in directing the course, and, in so doing, to step into their emerging selves.