Story by Rosemary Leonetti.
On the evening of Dec. 12, Long Beach High School hosted an IB Information Night, giving students and parents detailed information about the high school’s International Baccalaureate diploma program.
This comprehensive two-year academic program is designed to prepare young people to meet the academic demands of college while motivating them to become thoughtful, caring and active citizens.
Classroom instruction is designed to encourage students to be inquirers, well-balanced, thinkers, caring, reflective, knowledgeable, principled, open-minded, risk-takers and communicators. In addition, students who are not IB diploma candidates can elect to take any number of individual IB courses and receive certificates of credit by taking the IB exams. Long Beach High School became an IB World School in 2010.
“Long Beach High School is one of just eight schools on Long Island to offer the International Baccalaureate diploma program,” said Principal Dr. Gaurav Passi during his opening remarks. “IB a globally recognized program of excellence.”
Dr. Passi was joined by IB coordinator Dr. Andrew Smith, who broke down the main differences between AP courses and the IB program. With AP courses, students take individual college-level classes that end with a standardized exam administered by the College Board. Students who elect to earn an IB diploma must successfully complete one class from each of six key subject areas, with three of the classes at Higher Level (HL) and three at Standard Level (SL). HL courses are taken over a two-year span, beginning in the junior year, with exams administered at the end of senior year. SL courses are taken over a one-year span. To earn an IB diploma, students must also take a Theory of Knowledge course, write an original 4,000-word essay and complete 150 hours of community service in the CAS component of the program, which stands for creativity, action and service.
Dr. Smith noted that just 30 percent of students in the United States are able to graduate from college within four years. “The IB program will help turn the tide on that startling statistic by preparing students to do the work that will be required of them at the university level.”
“Think about your own jobs and what you do every day,” Dr. Smith implored of the audience. “You communicate, you write, you think. Those are some of the key skills you need every day in the workforce, especially in a competitive workforce like we have here in New York. The IB program will help your children develop the skills they will need to be college- and career-ready.”