The International Baccalaureate Global Conference is the largest gathering of the IB community for each region.   From Sunday 24 to Tuesday 26 March, Natalie Jensen and John Collins attended the 2019 IB Global Conference in Hong Kong.  Over 1500 people from the IB community from 40 countries attended and it was an opportunity to meet, engage in conversation and share experiences with IB educators from all over the world.

They attended a number of professional development workshops over the three days and connected with IB educators from around the globe to highlight the collective impact that is made through our schools.

Natalie focussed on the continuum of an IB education and the way schools can support students throughout the three programmes. Preshil will be one of the few schools in Australia to be authorised for all three programmes offering the Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and the Diploma Programme (DP).

She was also involved with schools in discussions surrounding ways that we can create impactful learning for teachers and students, rethinking reporting and how we can redefine the way we understand, assess and communicate student learning.  This year, the IB has also achieved greater alignment through all three programmes, the PYP, MYP and DP.  With the introduction of Approaches to Learning skills throughout the three programmes our focus is on vertically articulating skill development throughout the school for all of our students.

As a continuum school, the IB framework supports consistent pedagogical elements for our 4 year olds through to 18 year old students. The framework of the IB programmes allow us to focus on our students asking questions and ensuring that they, and their learning, is at the core of everything we do, as well as developing skills for lifelong learning and individuals who are responsible and active members of their community.

As a standing committee member of International Baccalaureate Schools Australasia (IBSA),  Natalie also had the pleasure of presenting with the other board members to share what we, as an organisation, do to support schools.  IBSA currently represents schools from Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Papua New Guinea.  IBSA also organises a speaker series each year.

This year Dr Jared Cooney Horvath will be presenting in Brisbane, Canberra, Sydney, Auckland, Adelaide and Melbourne as part of this series.  It is an honour that Preshil will be hosting the Melbourne event for the first time; with so many impressive IB schools in Victoria, this is an exciting opportunity for us.

John attended workshops with a focus on Approaches to Learning, Service Learning and developing International Mindedness in our students.

It was an opportunity to meet a number of inspirational IB leaders, teachers and coordinators and shared many unique approaches to education, social justice and global citizenship.  Having time to reflect on our current practice, explore new partnerships and connections left them with renewed enthusiasm and inspiration as well as a deep respect and admiration for the progressive learning environment that we have at Preshil.