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Washtenaw International Baccalaureate

September 19, 2010
At the September 14th Board of Education meeting, we received a presentation from Ms. Naomi Norman, the Director of Assessment, Planning and Research for the Washtenaw Intermediate School District.  The presentation formally introduced the Washtenaw International Baccalaureate High School Consortium  which is set to lead to a county-wide IB option for students in Saline (Fall, 2011) and other participating districts.  Enrollment for each district is proportional to the percentage of students in the county.  For Saline, this means approximately 18 students in each grade, or 72 for the full program would be eligible.  The school is being designed for 9th to 12th grade students with 150 students per grade.

Here is a bit about the philosophy behind IB…

The IB philosophy is to foster tolerance and inter-cultural understanding among young people. IB attempts to accomplish this through a curricular framework that incorporates critical thinking, problem solving, and exposure to a variety of viewpoints. The IB philosophy emphasizes:

  • Awareness of the similarities and differences among many cultures, understanding issues on an international scale, and responsible citizenship.
  • The inter-relatedness of various disciplines and issues.
  • A “Socratic” (question and answer) form of achieving knowledge in the classroom.
  • Student-centered inquiry and communication.

Check out the presentation here and comment on your thoughts about this option for Saline Area Schools.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Patti permalink
    September 22, 2010 1:38 pm

    I would not have my child participate in this program. SHS provides a very rigorous curriculum for those that want it, without the stifling structure of the IB program. Also I think that driving to Ypsi twice a day would get old very quickly, not to mention getting up earlier and getting home later would not allow kids to have any downtime once the hours of homework were finished.

  2. Kim permalink
    September 23, 2010 10:01 am

    While I won’t say that I flat out wouldn’t have my children participate, I do wonder what the benefits are to attending the IB school instead of Saline High School. One, in my opinion, would be the smaller school size (though that could be a drawback as well if it meant that fewer classes could be offered.) I have heard good things about the IB program but I have also heard the criticism that the program is rather rigid in what classes can be taken. Also transportation to and from the school is a good point, I certainly wouldn’t be able to pick my daughter up at 3:30 every day.

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