How We Work Together

The International Association is active wherever colleagues work together on behalf of our shared ideals for the development of the young child. This cooperation takes place through conferences, meetings, working groups, collaborative research projects, training and deepening courses, and the development of resources, as well as through partnerships and sponsorships among colleagues throughout the world. Responsibility for the association’s activities is shared among its council, coordinating group, board, and working groups and committees.

The Council

The council is the main decision-making body for carrying out the purposes of the association and for developing its educational and cultural goals.  The council also functions as an organ of perception for the questions, needs and tasks of the worldwide movement of Waldorf early childhood education. The council meets twice each year for several days. It makes decisions about projects, working groups, conferences and other activities, and is responsible to appoint the coordinating group and board and approve the annual budget. Each recognized member association appoints a representative to the council, with a seven-year term of office. Council members serve as links between the colleagues in their own countries and those in the International Association.

Current Coucil members are: Clara Aerts (Belgium) – Louise de Forest (North America) – Sara de los Santos (Sweden) – Ursula Dotzler (Austria) – Gitte Drewes (Denmark) – Svetlana Efremova (Russia) – Elena Gramotkina (Russia) – Svetlana Eks (Ukraine) – Ulrike Farnleitner (Ireland)-  Sucheta Garud (India) – Anne-Kathrin Hantel (Germany) – Mary-G  Häuptle (South Africa)Birgit Krohmer (Germany) – Susan Howard (North America) – Thi Phuong Dung Cao (Vietnam)- Sarah Dickson (East Africa) – Tina Iwersen (Finland) – Silvia Jensen (Brazil)  – Shy-Tyng Kai (Taiwan) – Joli Kiss (Hungary) – Janja Kokalj (Slovenia) – Magdalena Kuczora (Poland) –  Oliver Langscheid (Germany) – Kathy Macfarlane (New Zealand) -Sono Matsuura (Japan) – Heli Müristaja (Estonia)- Janni Nicol (United Kingdom) – Gabriela Popescu (Romania) –  Rasa Ragauskaite-Driukiene (Lithuania)  – Michal Reshef (Israel) –  – Silvia Rizzoli (Italy) Tánja Smolková (Czech Republic) – Lourdes Tormes (Spain) – Ae Young Jeong (Korea) – Aurelia Udo de Haes (Norway) – Heather van Zyl (Australia) – Jacqueline Walter-Baumgartner (Switzerland) – Li Zhang (China) – Cathy Seiwert (France)

Council members can be contacted through the Member Country Associations on the Home Page.

The Coordinating Group

The coordinating group is responsible for managing the business and facilitating the work of the association.  There are currently three members of the coordinating group, working on a part-time basis for the IASWECE.

Susan Howard works in Amherst, Massachussets, USA and is resposible for coordianting membership, publications, conferences, working groups and council communication. She can be reached at or at 001 413 549 5930

Clara Aerts works in Belgium on the support for projects and collaboration with other organizations, and fundraising.  She can be reached at

Lourdes Tormes works in Madrid, Spain with the main focus on the e-newsletter, project support  and the website. Contact her at or 0034 653 91 31 99

The Board

The board carries the legal and financial responsibility for the association. Board members are elected by the council for terms of three to five years. Board members are also council members. The board meets several times each year to oversee the preparation of the budget and financial reports, and to act as a speaking partner and mirror for the coordinating group. The current members of the board are:                                               

Oliver Langscheid Neustadt, Germany

Janni Nicol Cambridge, United Kingdom

Tina Iwersen Helsinki, Finland,

Mary-G Hauptle, South Africa

Task force groups, committees and working groups are also established from time to time to address burning issues, engage in collaborative research, or conduct the activities of the association. More information.