IB Education for all students set Pal-Mac apart

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All students will receive a world-class, relevant education. That’s the mission of the Palmyra-Macedon Central School District each and every day.


As part of this mission, Pal-Mac provides a unique educational experience for students through an International Baccalaureate based education for all Pal-Mac students. The IB offers four programs to form a continuum of education that promotes personal and academic growth. In an ever-changing world, an IB education encourages students to think critically at all levels and develop an expanded worldview beyond a traditional learning environment.


The program at the primary school and intermediate school allows students to become active, caring, lifelong learners who demonstrate respect for themselves and others. Upon entry to the middle school, students are immersed in a program that encourages students to make practical connections between their classroom education and real-world experiences. The Diploma Program is a choice for students in grades 11-12 allowing them to earn an IB Diploma or students can take IB single courses to earn a certificate in the course(s). Currently, the district is on the cusp of becoming an IB-certified district at all grade levels which would make Pal-Mac one of only a handful of districts with such distinction in New York State. Pal-Mac Primary School received authorization this summer while the intermediate school is in candidacy with the next step being an authorization/verification visit. Grades 6-10 were authorized in April of 2016 as partnership IB World Schools; and grades 11-12 have been an IB World School offering the Diploma pathway since August of 2002.


Designation as an IB district signifies Pal-Mac’s commitment to improve teaching and learning for a diverse community of students by delivering challenging, high-quality programs. IB is found in over 5,000 schools in approximately 150 countries around the world.


“Our district is incredibly unique in that we offer an IB education to students at all grades levels in our district,” said Pam Wagner, who serves as IB DP/MYP Coordinator. “We are fortunate to have supportive leadership, faculty, and staff members, and look forward to becoming a full IB district in the near future.”


Critical thinking is a key element of the program. Thinking beyond the traditional “textbook method” of teaching and putting education in action is a main focus of the program. One such example is The Personal Project completed during the sophomore year. The Personal Project is a student-centered exploration in which students showcase their learning. The project, which is worked on over the course of the school year, is designed as an independent learning experience and assesses students’ skills for self-management, research, communication, critical and creative thinking, and collaboration. The Personal Project comes in a variety of forms ranging from coding a video game to developing a science experiment or planning a unique event. From the time students enter the program at the primary school, when respect and the love of lifelong learning is instilled, through the opportunity for students to receive the lauded IB Diploma, Pal-Mac offers a world-class learning experience.


“When students leave the halls of Pal-Mac, we want them to be successful in whatever endeavors they choose to pursue,” said Superintendent Bob Ike. “The IB education which we incorporate into our everyday learning curriculum provides our students with the tools to do just that.”

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