Our Student-Centered Approach

What We Believe

It is no longer sufficient for a young person to know that differences exist in the world, or even how these differences can impact the world. Instead, young people need to understand that knowledge of differences can bring about positive change, and that they themselves can be the agents through which that change can happen.

Student empowerment and agency at International start with the expectations that we set for all students. As one of the few schools in the world that offers the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years and Diploma Programmes to all of its students, we believe that academic excellence for all, coupled with an unwavering belief in the potential of every one of our students, will lead to great outcomes. 

We believe that all students deserve a world-class education that will prepare them to be engaged global citizens, and that the IB’s expectations – from concept-based teaching and learning in the Middle Years Programme to the variety of assessment types and independent learning requirements of the Diploma Programme – supports our vision for global leadership and empowerment.

As an IB World School, our vision dovetails perfectly with two central features of both the Middle Years and Diploma Programmes: the IB Learner Profile and Approaches to Learning. The Learner Profile is a set of ten traits that students develop as IB learners (inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced, and reflective). Approaches to learning are skills areas that IB learners develop as they “learn how to learn” (these include communication, collaboration, reflection, research, thinking, and affective skills).  

Our Student-Centered Approach Includes:

  • The IB Middle Years Program in grades 6-10
  • The IB Diploma Program -- for all students -- in grades 11-12
  • 1:1 personal technology for all students:
  • Language acquisition (Spanish) as a core class, beginning in gr. 6
  • Reading and math intervention classes, taught by certified teachers
  • Personalized college preparation and support (for both students and parents)
  • Independent, student-run projects:
    • Personal Project (gr. 10)
    • Extended Essay (gr. 11/12)
    • Creativity, Activity, and Service (gr. 11/12)
    • Senior Project (gr. 11/12)
  • Sports teams offered at both middle school and high school (fall, winter, spring)
  • After-school clubs that are proposed by and co-run by students
  • Service as Action at all grade levels
  • International field studies (typically lasting 7-15 days)
    • Since 2014, we have had students travel to Cuba, China, the Dominican Republic, South Africa, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, England, Iceland, and more!
  • Opportunities to host international students and to study abroad
  • College visits at each grade level, beginning in grade 6