Jesse Boyd Elementary is an authorized International Baccalaureate (IB) World School. Within IB, schools serving kindergarden through fifth grade student offer the Primary Years Programme (PYP). Within IB, schools serving kindergarten through sixth grade students apply to offer the Primary Years Programme (PYP). IB schools are made up of PYP, MYP (Middle Years Program) and DP (Diploma Program). Jesse Boyd is one of 17 IB schools in SC and joins an international organization comprising of 3,200 schools in 141 countries. You can learn all about the International Baccalaureate at www.ibo.org. Please visit their site because greater detail about the PYP is given.
Jesse Boyd Elementary School was designated an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School in April of 2011 and reauthorized again in May of 2015. This honor and achievement represents a culmination of years of hard work by the JBE administration, faculty, staff and students. Our Primary Years Programme (PYP) for students aged 3 to 12, focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. For more information concerning the IBPYP program at Jesse Boyd, please contact our school’s IB coordinator, Jennifer Squires by calling the school or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT IS THE PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME?
The International Baccalaureate (IB) continuum includes the Primary Years Programme, the Middle Years Programme, and the Diploma Programme. The PYP is a curriculum framework within which national and state standards can be embeded. In teaching curriculum content (science, social studies, etc.), teachers strive to make connections between learners’ existing knowledge and new knowledge. In the PYP, children are provided opportunities to build meaning and refine understanding, principally through structured inquiry. The learner moves from his or her current level of understanding to a new and deeper level of understanding.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BECOME AN IB AUTHORIZED WORLD SCHOOL?
The Primary Years Programme Timeline has four phases: (1) Consideration Phase, (2) Candidate Phase, (3) Application Phase, and (4) Operating Phase. In winter 2008, the administrators and staff at Jesse Boyd began the Consideration Phase, which typically takes from 6 months to 1 year. Our goals in this Phase were to communicate with the Jesse Boyd Elementary community about the PYP, plan for and begin implementation by attending summer training, gather support and make informed decisions to begin the authorization process. We concluded the Consideration Phase with the submission of Part A of our formal application in November of 2008. We became a Candidate IB School in December 2008. When a school enters the Consideration Phase, IBNA (IB North America) requires staffing a “coordinator” position to ensure that the many requirements along the way to authorization are met effectively and in a timely fashion and to work with teachers in writing and teaching the Program of Inquiry. At Jesse Boyd, Meredith Rose was named the IB/PYP Coordinator. During this phase our staff worked collaboratively to begin implementing the program, had a visit from our IB consultant, and continued our teacher training. This phase also includes submitting Application B in June 2010. The next step was a visit from an authorization team who evaulated our progress in implementing the program. In the spring of 2011 Jesse Boyd received notice from IBO that we have been approved and we are a fully authorized IB World School. Our faculty and staff continues to teach, grow and learn while presenting the IB program to our students. When Mrs. Rose became our school’s principal, Mrs. Mary Kay Deese was named the school’s new IB coordinator. She continues the work of helping our school implement the IBPYP program.
WHAT IS DIFFERENT AT AN IB BOYD THIS YEAR RELATED TO THE PYP?
We will expand our traditional character education curriculum (facilitated by Mrs. Pressley, our counselor) to include the traits that IB has identified as those traits needed by an international minded individual. These traits (called the Learner Profile) include the following: inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced, and reflective. Parents and other family members can support the development of these traits and the vocabulary by noticing actions and words associated with these traits. Another part of IB are the Attitudes. These attitudes are appreciation, commitment, confidence, cooperation, creativity, curiosity, empathy, enthusiasm, independence, integrity, respect, and tolerance.
Another change parents and students may have already noticed is that we are moving toward classroom activities that allow for teacher guided, student centered. Our teachers implemented inquiry into our instruction four years ago when we added our science coach. IB curriculum will expand that inquiry into all subjects including our related arts, Music, Art, and PE. Parents will also see more authentic assessment of student progress through the use of rubrics and more project based assessments. Parents will also notice an IB report card along with the regular District 7 report card. This report card will help you see the growth for our child in becoming an internationally minded student. You will also be invited to student led parent conferences. As an authorized school our oldest students (5th grade) will work on Exhibition. This is somewhat of a culminating activity to their years as an IB student. This will take place in the spring and you will hear lots more information about this during the school year.
HOW ARE TEACHERS PREPARED TO TEACH THE PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME?
By the time we submitted Application A, our administrative team participated in PYP Level 1 Training. In addition to IB-sanctioned training, Boyd teachers participate in on-campus professional development sessions during District staff development days, during teacher planning periods, and after school. Many of our teachers have participated in “field trips” to IB Authorized World Schools in Greenville. Ask your child’s teacher what he or she liked best about one of those schools and/or visit the website of one of those schools such as Sara Collins Elementary. We’ve also had Level 2 and Level 3 training for most of our teachers and will continue training. Our teachers are learning and growing each day in the life of teaching in an IBPYP school.
All of us at Boyd are eager to share our vision with parents and the entire Jesse Boyd community. We invite you to come visit, ask questions, and support our progress toward this very special goal! If you have any questions about IB, please email Meredith Rose or Jennifer Squires at email@example.com or call at 594-4430.