George Washington Academy is a candidate school for the IB Diploma Programme.* We hope to begin offering IB courses in the fall of 2020, and while this may seem far away, GWA teachers and administrators already this school year have started the hard work of preparing to receive authorization.
GWA’s IB Coordinator Mr. Grine says that our school is deep in the design stage of our IB course offerings. We are currently planning the overall curriculum for the Diploma Programme, which involves working on course outlines, choosing topics relevant to our students, and training teachers. GWA’s IB consultant will come to visit our school this December to meet with administrators, the GWA Board, teachers, and students. Earlier in November, two of our teachers had the opportunity to attend an IB training in Barcelona for the subjects Biology and History. Other teachers are attending trainings online, and so far six out of our ten IB teachers have completed their trainings. All of our IB teachers will complete their training by March 2019.
IB training and authorization provides opportunities for current GWA students, including those who will graduate before implementation of the program. Mr. Grine says he is eager to apply what he learned in his IB History training to his current AP classes, and he knows that other teachers feel similarly. IB reinforces a global perspective in education and encourages critical thinking. These best practices already align deeply with GWA’s vision and commitment to inspiring multilingual, lifelong learners. Attending trainings and networking with other educators provides an excellent opportunity for our teachers to learn and grow. New techniques and ideas will inform their teaching in all of their classes and will benefit their current and future students.
As an important note: GWA will continue offering AP courses after the launch of the IB Diploma Programme. IB will offer GWA High School students one of several options available to them. Both IB and AP programs provide different and important learning opportunities, and students will choose which path suits them best. Mr. Grine is currently meeting with Middle School classes so that those students will be familiar with IB when they begin to make decisions about their High School courses.
GWA has seen great support for the authorization and implementation of the IB program from students, faculty, and parents.
*Only schools authorized by the IB Organization can offer any of its four academic programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), the Diploma Programme (DP), or the Career-related Programme (CP). Candidate status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted. For further information about the IBO and its programmes visit http://www.ibo.org.