Dr Siva Kumari visits NSW
Dr Siva Kumari is in New South Wales, Australia, this week, to visit IB World Schools, to speak with educators and with government officials. The visit is important because at present, state schools in New South Wales are not teaching the IB. So students who want to take the IB can only do so at one of 17 private schools in the state.
Chiara Schwarz (17) of St Andrews Cathedral School, is one of those who opted for the IB instead of the national Higher Class Certificate.
"I just liked the idea that it was so internationally recognised, because it opened so many opportunities later on in life," Chiara explains. The breadth of the curriculum also appealed to her. As St Andrews’s IB coordinator, Sharon Munro, adds: “It’s nice to be able to build choice into the curriculum, and for kids to be able to choose based on their strengths.”
Dr Kumari believes that the IB will make a strong contribution to the Australian educational domain: "I hope the local authorities are friendly to us," she says, "and see us as a viable alternative, so that we can show how this system, which is considered elitist, is not so.” The IB is a “fair system,” she adds, because it is based on a student’s individual achievement. “In life, when you leave school, nobody is marking you against your colleague […] that’s our belief in learning as well,” she explains.
Governments in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia already allow state schools to offer an IB programme.