“Ms. Christa Clore, IB coordinator at Central Elementary, used this award to purchase 10 books for the study of alternative and creative approaches to curriculum presentation. The teachers involved in the study are preparing for the International Baccalaureate program. Once the initial ten teachers have completed their study they will then offer the books to an additional group of teachers to form a new study group.”
Hmm, the International Baccalaureate program…now what is that all about? I asked myself. So I did a little digging.
Starting with their Mission and Strategy…
Evidently they “promote intercultural understanding and respect, not as an alternative to a sense of cultural and national identity, but as an essential part of life in the 21st century.”
Here’s an excerpt from their mission statement:
“The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people…who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.” [Read full statement]
Sounds nice…world peace and harmony. Honestly, the phrases “develop inquiring…young people” made me a bit uneasy, and the idea of “other people, with their differences can also be right” made me ask a few questions. What exactly are we “developing” here and are we talking about being morally “right”? So I kept digging.
Since Central is our county’s Elementary School I started with the Primary Years Programme Curriculum Framework. And then found my way to the document, “A Basis For Practice“. Here is the opening sentences of the summary found on page 14 of the 16 page document:
“The PYP focuses on the heart as well as the mind and addresses social, physical, emotional and cultural needs as well as academic ones. The traditional academic subjects are valued. In addition, there is an emphasis on the balance between the acquisition of essential knowledge and skills and the search for meaning and understanding.” [emphasis mine]
I don’t know about you, but this seems a bit scary to me. And this curriculum is being taught right now at Central Elementary School in Fluvanna County.
Read more about Central Elementary officially becoming a “Candidate School” for this program on May 16, 2007, and how they’re working towards being an “Authorized IB School”. Please let me know what you think below. I can tell you, this is not the last you’ll hear about this curriculum here.
FOR FURTHER RESEARCH:
Rob Schilling based out of Charlottesville, VA will be devoting his April 3rd radio program, “The Schilling Show” to the topic: 1070 AM from 1pm to 2pm. Edwatch.org has more information as well on the IB company.
NOTE: Special Thanks to Donna Douma for bringing this to my attention!