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IB trailblazers gain their diplomas

We pass on our warmest congratulations to all of the students in our first ever International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme cohort, who received their results yesterday. They are a group of committed and enthusiastic learners who have each individually personified the IB Learner Profile, and as pioneers for this excellent qualification, they have set the benchmark for the increasing numbers who are following behind them in the BGS Sixth Form. We could not be prouder of them.

The IB Diploma Programme allows students to study six subjects, with three at ‘Higher Level’ and three at ‘Standard Level’. Students also complete the compulsory Core, which includes a 4,000-word Extended Essay, a Theory of Knowledge component which is unique to the IB, and the Creativity, Action and Service (CAS) qualification, which credits pupils for their activities in these important areas. In this very real sense, the IB provides structure for the deep and well-rounded education we aim to provide for all at BGS.

Our IB students, in common with so many around the world, were not able to sit the examinations for which they had worked so hard over their time in the Sixth Form, and with this being the first IB cohort at BGS, we have little to compare them against, not that such comparisons are the order of the day given these circumstances. For information, however, the BGS average of 34 points has a UCAS points equivalent of 3 A* grades at A level, and over a quarter of this first cohort were awarded points with a corresponding equivalence of over 4 A* grades at A level.

Our Assistant Head (IB Coordinator), Ben Schober, commented “I was delighted to be able to celebrate the successes of our first ever IB Diploma cohort this year. They have achieved some superb scores across all subject areas, and we are very pleased with their achievements in the Core elements of the Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge. These intrinsic, skills-based components are the heart of the Diploma and show how well our students have engaged with the IB ethos over the last two years.

“We are pleased, also, that our students have been able to develop their learning skills whilst contributing to the wider Bristol community in a sustained way through their CAS qualification. The resilience and positivity they have shown in recent weeks mirrors the way they have approached the entire course. They should all be incredibly proud of what they have achieved, as trailblazers for all those who follow them.”

The students themselves reflected with great positivity on what studying for the IB Diploma has meant to them. One commented: “Looking back on it, the IB couldn’t have been more rewarding. It taught me not just new information but a new way of thinking and approaching learning, asking me to take responsibility and a lead in my own learning.” Another said: “I leave BGS with an IB Diploma, but I leave also with the knowledge that wherever life takes me, I will always be an IB student. I will always have the grit, integrity and laughter that characterises our cohort. I will always have a fascination for knowledge beyond the confines of one subject.”

Headmaster, Jaideep Barot said: “I want to pay huge tribute to all of the students in our IB Class of 2020; as well as the outstanding learning journey they have each been on, setting an example for younger pupils at BGS, they have given so much to our school and to our wider community. I know they have left enriched by the IB experience, and I wish each and every one of them the best of luck as they prepare for the next chapter in their lives.”