Montgomery Officials Visit Mobile's International Baccalaureate Program

The following is a news release from Montgomery Public Schools.

Montgomery Officials Visit Mobile's International Baccalaureate Program

For Immediate Release

April 19, 2010,

MOBILE, Ala. – The Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce's Education and Workforce Development Council hosted an inter-city visit Monday to Mobile's International Baccalaureate Program at Murphy High School. Included on the trip were Montgomery Public School Superintendent Barbara Thompson, several school board members, the chairman and president of the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, educators from Alabama State University, the Department of Secondary Education, and almost two dozen other business and community leaders.  The group received an overview of the program from central office administrators, IB teachers, administrators and students.

The group is investigating the possibility of bringing an IB Program to the Montgomery Public School System.

"We are looking at the opportunity to bring this program to Montgomery," said Superintendent Thompson. "There are several possibilities for introducing the IB concept to MPS. This exciting program could be easily integrated into our school system. It is a proven concept that would be a great addition to our growing focus on academics in Montgomery."

The IB Program at Murphy is the second oldest program in the state.  It serves nearly 200 qualified high school students each year, of all socio-economic, ethnic and racial backgrounds, without regard to home-school boundaries.  Any student admitted to the program automatically receives a transfer to Murphy High School and is eligible to play sports.

Since its founding in 1963, the IB Program has become an international symbol of academic integrity and intellectual promise.  It is international in scope, with more than 2,743 IB accredited schools in 138 countries. It places emphasis on an overall rigorous curriculum.  Responsibility for all academic judgments about the quality of candidates' work rests with more than 4,000 examiners worldwide, led by chief examiners with international authority in their fields. The grading system is criterion-referenced; each student's performance is measured against well-defined levels of achievement. Top grades reflect attainment of knowledge and skills relative to set international standards applied equally to all schools.

The team that visited Mobile will continue to discuss the potential for putting the program into Montgomery Public Schools.

"We were delighted to have an opportunity to meet a number of students in the IB program and were impressed with their enthusiasm about the program," said Dr. Cameron Martindale, Sr. Vice President of Community Development for the chamber. "It is clear this successful program could be a fantastic opportunity for our students in Montgomery."