The Student News Site of Manheim Township High School

The Township Times

The Student News Site of Manheim Township High School

The Township Times

The Township Times

The Student News Site of Manheim Township High School

The Township Times

International Baccalaureate Basics


Manheim Township offers many opportunities for its students to excel. Among these is the International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme, which is offered in over 155 countries. It incorporates global perspectives into every class, helping to open students to new viewpoints.

To qualify for the program, students need to have maintained a minimum 85% overall GPA by the end of 10th grade, although there are sometimes exceptions. It’s recommended for students to have completed Algebra 1, Algebra 2 and Geometry before entering the program. However, it is possible to take Geometry over the summer or simultaneously with IB Math 1 if necessary. Additionally, it’s strongly recommended for students to have at least three years of a foreign language under their belt, but again, different arrangements have been made in the past for extenuating circumstances. 

The Diploma Programme is heavily centered around the arts and humanities, with a strong focus on writing, discussions and project-based assignments. IB is well respected among colleges and can prepare students for international studies. 

As a current senior in the IB Diploma Programme, Alyssa Forman believes the program is incredibly beneficial, as it “develops your critical thinking and writing skills. It teaches you to prioritize important assignments and manage your time efficiently, and this will prepare you well for college,” she said.

She said that she “loves IB, because the relationships you form with people here are really special.” 

The program offers a close community of students and teachers, which provides support and guidance through students’ final years of high school.

A typical IB schedule includes a two-year English class, a two-year foreign language class, a two-year history class and a two-year math class. IB students are also required to take at least one year of an IB science. Students will have the opportunity to take an additional elective. 

Another requirement of the program is the Theory of Knowledge (ToK) class, which runs over the second semester of junior year and the first semester of senior year. This class is taught by Mrs. Kristel Kennedy and brings together topics from all subject areas to help students make connections between school and the real world. 

To earn the diploma, students must take three higher level (HL) courses and three standard level (SL) courses in addition to completing a CAS project and an extended essay. It is also possible to take four HL classes and two SL classes, as long as the student meets the requirement of six IB classes. The ToK seminar does not qualify as an IB core class and must be taken in addition to the six classes.

The application for the IB Diploma Programme is due by Dec. 15. The application asks for a short essay on the characteristics of an IB student and also requires teacher recommendations. Following the application process, candidates will have a short interview with some of the IB teachers for the chance to ask questions about the program. 

“Interested students should know that this program means joining a community of students and teachers who work together to broaden our perspectives and develop critical thinking,” said Dr. Larry Penner, head of the IB Programme. 

He emphasized that students considering the program should have a love of learning, be ready to take on a challenge, and be willing to learn and grow from their experiences. The teachers in the program guide students by teaching the importance of the 10 characteristics of an IB student:

  1. Inquirers
  2. Knowledgeable
  3. Thinkers
  4. Communicators
  5. Principled
  6. Open-Minded
  7. Caring
  8. Risk-Takers
  9. Balanced
  10. Reflective

Reach out to Dr. Penner or any student in the program with questions. More about the program can be found by visiting the IB website or the MTWP IB Information page.

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About the Contributor
Macyn Fogleman, Staff writer
Macyn is a staff writer for The Township Times and is a junior at MT.

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