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Second school to offer IB

The Heritage School on Monday, its 12th foundation day, became the second International Baccalaureate (IB) school in Bengal after Oaktree International School. The IB diploma programme was inaugurated at the school by governor M.K. Narayanan, who was the chief guest on the occasion.

“The IB programme was on our mind for about three years,” said principal Seema Sapru. The application was sent in August 2010 to the International Baccalaureate Organisation. Instead of recruiting a new set of teachers, the school selected the IB team from among its existing faculty and got them trained. After three rounds of inspection, the school received authorisation from the IBO on April 24.

At present, the course is open to students of Class XI. “Officially we start from July 1. But since our students are new to the programme, we have started orientation classes with the IBO’s permission.”

Nineteen students have already signed up and Sapru hopes the number might go up to 30. The principal also announced the introduction of O-level for International General Certificate of Secondary Education for Class IX students from the 2012-13 session.

“There is no checkpoint in IB before Class XII. As we are used to having one at Class X, we decided to offer this course. The pattern of this course will be slightly different from ICSE and will help students bridge the gap between regular learning and research-based learning, which is the hallmark of IB,” said Sapru.

The course fee for IB, one of the most universally accepted school-leaving certificates in the West, would be almost five times that of ISC.

“IBO charges the school annually for accreditation and for every student and subject that the student enrols for. Add to that a registration fee,” explains an administrator.

Present in the audience was Anuradha Das, the principal of Calcutta International School, which is also gearing up to introduce the programme. “We hope to start our IB course in August,” she said.