IB's decision on authorization

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During the decision on authorization phase, IB staff will review the verification visiting team’s feedback and determine whether the school has met the requirements for authorization.

The IB’s Director General is ultimately responsible for deciding the outcome of all applications for authorization made by candidate schools.

Authorization to offer an IB programme is granted or denied by the IB at its sole discretion. If the IB grants the school authorization, it is granted on the condition of the school’s compliance with the Rules for IB World Schools (PDF, 3.2 MB).


Once the IB has reviewed the verification visiting team’s feedback, they will provide the report on authorization and communicate the decision on authorization to the school. The school’s activities during this phase depend entirely on that decision.

If the school has received authorization, it will review, sign and return the authorization agreement to the IB. 

  • Once the IB has received the signed agreement, the school will receive its Certificate of authorization.

If the school has not met the requirements for authorization, it will:

  • review the information the IB has provided and resolve any matters to be addressed (MTBA) by the deadline provided
  • remain in contact with their programme relationship manager as they assemble and submit the additional or updated information needed
  • work with the IB to schedule a follow-up visit (at the school’s expense), if necessary.

The information submitted will be reviewed by the IB to determine whether the school has resolved the matters to be addressed.

The IB has full discretion to deny authorization to a candidate school. If authorization is denied, the IB will summarize the reasons for this decision. The decision is final: it is not subject to reconsideration or appeal. If the school is denied authorization and wishes to reapply, it may do so only after at least two years have elapsed since the date of the letter sent by the IB with the decision of denial. New applications will be subject to the same conditions as initial applications.

Professional development

Schools will have already completed the professional development (PD) required for authorization during the candidacy phase. There are no additional PD requirements relating to the decision on authorization phase.


There are no additional IB costs associated with the decision on authorization phase unless the IB determines that the school must have a follow-up visit to address any unmet requirements. In such cases, the follow-up visit takes place at the school’s expense.


The following milestones must be reached during the decision on authorization phase:

  • The IB issues its decision on authorization.
  • The school submits the authorization agreement, signed by the indicated officials.
  • The IB awards authorization.

Points of contact

The school will continue to work closely with the programme relationship manager from the IB’s Authorization team who was established as their point of contact during the candidacy phase.

Next steps

Once authorized, the school will be recognized and begin programme implementation as an IB World School. This is a considerable achievement and the IB recognizes the contributions made by all members of the school community in reaching this goal.

Read more about moving forward as an IB World School.