The administrative staff oversee the daily operational aspects of the entire school, while also supporting the self-governance of our faculty. The whole school is supported by staff in the Lower School and High School Administration, Admissions, Development, Facilities, Information Technology (IT), Business, Athletics, and Student Services.
Whole School Administrator
Kat McFee originates from the Midwest, where she and other founding families began the first Waldorf School in Lawrence, Kansas. For the past decade, she and her husband, Waldorf Early Childhood Educator Chris McFee, have considered the West Coast to be their home.
A first-generation Brazilian immigrant, Kat brings passion and insight to her role as a Waldorf educator and administrator. She has been K-8 Dean of Pine Hill-High Mowing School and was a class teacher for 26 years. Kat holds a BS in Education and Anthropology from Emporia State University in Kansas, an MEd in Education, and a Waldorf Teaching Certificate from Antioch University. Researching, pursuing, and nurturing the potential in education is her life’s work.
Kat developed an early interest in education for global purposes, exploring the frontiers of education that affect positive change for the future of the world. Her first teaching position was in the school district where the landmark Brown v. Board of Education case changed the course of American public education. In those early years, she was immersed in schools with high teaching and organizational expectations for the true integration of humanity. Her teaching career focused on meeting all human beings in a setting of true diversity. In recent years, she has worked at Three Cedars-Seattle Waldorf School and Pine Hill-High Mowing School.
That intentional standard of work led her to Waldorf education in the 1990s. She used Waldorf strategies in her public school work and brought her leadership and administrative talents to help establish Prairie Moon Waldorf School. Kat prioritizes diversity of thought, population, and community, and focuses her administrative work on the social renewal promise of a brighter future. “What led me to Waldorf education was the commitment to meet the child authentically,” she says. “In 27 years of research, I have never seen a more effective pedagogical approach.”
Kat lives with her husband in Fair Oaks. They have four grown children who attended Waldorf schools.
Contact Kat: firstname.lastname@example.org or 916-961-3900
High School Administrator
A northern California native, Dean Smith attended public school and graduated from CSU East Bay (formerly CSU Hayward) with degrees in math and computer science. From college, he went to work as a software engineer for Hewlett Packard, where he stayed for 13 years while attending graduate school at Stanford University in computer science. However, a typing injury sidelined his first career, and amid frustrations of the rising cost of living in Silicon Valley, he decided to relocate his family to the Sacramento area, where he spent time as a stay-at-home dad while reconsidering his career.
After discovering Waldorf education, Dean began teacher training in 2003, with a goal of teaching high school math. He began teaching at Live Oak Waldorf School, where his daughter attended preschool, and after another period of time off with his newborn son, Dean returned to work in the office. In 2008, he stepped into the role of assistant administrator and eventually took over as co-administrator. When his daughter was ready for high school, the family moved to Sacramento Waldorf School, and Dean fulfilled the role of IT manager and taught computer and math classes. When a high school administrator position opened in 2016, he stepped into the role.
Dean was inspired by the meandering campus and the roots of Waldorf education. Trained in the Feldenkrais Method, he is interested in how humans learn. His philosophy drives his lifestyle, informing his career and parenting choices, too. “The basis and foundations of Waldorf education are so deep, I trusted it,” he says. “The more I worked at a Waldorf school, the more I became enmeshed in Waldorf myself. It fits what I value, and being in a community where that is honored and encouraged is important.”
“This education works,” Dean says. “It’s heartening to walk the process. Our high school students are clear about who they are, they can self-advocate, they can look you in the eye and have a conversation. They get to a place as a human being where they are potent, they are able to move into the world and have authorship over what they are doing. I love being part of that process and watching it happen.”
Dean lives in Granite Bay with his wife, who is an email marketing manager at Hewlett Packard, and their children. His daughter graduated from Sacramento Waldorf School and is pre-med in college. His son is a high school sophomore.
Contact Dean: email@example.com or 916-961-3900