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Ministry of Education, Department of Education Services and School Officials celebrate with students on Prospect Primary School achieving IB Authorisation.  Included in the picture is Prospect Primary Principal Gloria Bell, Councillor for Education Winston Connolly, Chief Officer for Education Mary Rodrigues, Chief Education Officer Shirley Wahler and Manager Teachersí Professional Development Kiva Powell.

...we have not one but three schools...all students access to high-quality education.

Mrs. Shirley Wahler, Chief Education Officer

Published 26th July 2013, 10:44am

On June 20th 2013, Prospect Primary School became the third Cayman Islands Government School to achieve their International Baccalaureate (IB) Authorisation in the Primary Years Programme (PYP). They join Sir John A. Cumber Primary School and Savannah Primary School in this prestigious accomplishment and can now proudly call themselves an IB World School.

These three schools are the only government schools in the Caribbean Region that are IB Authorised. Commenting on this success, Chief Education Officer Mrs. Shirley Wahler said, "The fact that we have not one but three schools that have earned this distinction is really worth celebrating as it is an outcome of the efforts to encourage excellence and to give all students access to high-quality education."

Speaking to her schoolís achievement, Principal Gloria Bell said, "Using the IB framework to deliver the National Curriculum has certainly contributed to the success of Prospect Primary producing well rounded, globally minded students. The programme allowed us to focus on developing the whole child, touching hearts as well as minds and encompassing social, physical, emotional and cultural needs in addition to academic development.

During the 5 year journey we have seen parents, staff and students work collaboratively to develop attitudes and values that will enhance and enrich life in the Cayman Islands. Despite some drawbacks we never lost our focus. Under the direction of Mrs. Charmaine Bravo, our PYP Coordinator, we continued to rigorously implement the programme as we firmly believed that the Primary Years Framework is the tool whereby students are able to effectively access learning and make meaningful contributions to their society.

We are all ecstatic about this achievement but we know that this is just the beginning. We look forward to the continued delivery of the national curriculum through this framework as we work towards verification in the next four years."

Each IB World school has a PYP Coordinator who ensures that the school achieves the necessary goals and requirements to be authorised and that after authorisation the school continues to meet the standards of the IB programme. Mrs. Charmaine Bravo commented on Prospect Primaryís success saying, "The dedication and enthusiasm of students, principal and staff, parent body and the wider community, are contributing factors to the realisation of this goal. The International Baccalaureate framework embodies the facets of what it means to be Global Citizens. This initiative will not only propel our students but will enhance the social and intellectual fabric of the Cayman society."

The IB website (www.ibo.org) states that the PYP addresses studentsí academic, social and emotional well-being, it encourages students to develop independence and to take responsibility for their own learning, supports studentsí efforts to gain understanding of the world and to function within it, and helps students establish personal values as a foundation upon which international-mindedness will develop and flourish. The age range for the PYP is 3-12 years.

Minister for Education, Hon. Tara Rivers congratulated Prospect Primary on their accomplishment. "Many congratulations to Prospect Primary on being authorised as an IB World School. I am an advocate for and I believe in the International Baccalaureate programme and philosophy. I am delighted to see that a growing number of our Government Schools are recognised on an international level and meet international standards. This is just another step in improving our education system and I look forward to our other primary schools reaching IB authorisation in the PYP."