In Pakistan, the British education system rose to popularity in the late 1970s and today the IB education system is nationally on the rise. This directional growth is indicative and reflective of a global shift towards IB Education. Currently there are 44571 IB World Schools in 150 countries, territories with 2742 IB World Schools in the Americas (largest concentrations in US and Canada); 994 in Africa, Europe and Middle East (Largest concentration in the UK) and 704 in Asia-Pacific (largest concentrations in Australia, China and India).
From only one IB World School in 1996, today there are in total 11 IB World Schools in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad offering a combination of the Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Diploma Progamme (DP). By 2020, the number of IB World Schools in Pakistan is expected to be more than 50. Recently, representatives of 30 national private and public schools & networks, members of the Association of IB World Schools in Pakistan (IBPAK), from 5 cities, attended the bi-annual meeting and an IB Governance seminar. The meeting was be chaired by Taymur Mirza, the founding Principal and visionary of The International School, Karachi (First IB World School in Pakistan). Kevin House, Head of School Services, and Gregory Biggs, DP Product Manager, from the IB Asia-Pacific office in Singapore updated the members about global developments. Concurrently, the IB Governance seminar was led by International Baccalaureate educators: Richard Tangye and Dr John Sperandio at Avari Hotel, Lahore.
At the events, the participants discussed the multiple reasons for the global demand of IB education. First, the International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO) is a non-profit independent body governed by educationists, visionaries and leaders from all around the world. Dr Shams Lakha, founding Rector of Aga Khan University, Karachi and ex-Federal Minister of Education, served as a member. The independence of this organisation from politics and agenda of any government allows it to be innovative with its educational programmes. Second, the primal focal point of the philosophy, curriculum and teaching of IB education is to make the mind think, engage with others and reflect on the knowledge rather than the reproduction of it. It is extremely research oriented for students aged 3 to 18 years and thus better prepares students to meet the demands of the 21st Century. Third, the journey for the schools to become IB World Schools include curriculum development, management and leadership capacity development, aligning policies and procedures for quality delivery of IB education and professional development of teachers. Schools take at least 2 years of development to meet the quality assurance requirements of IBO to be authorised to offer any one of their programmes. There after the schools are inspected every 5 years by a team of international educators to ensure quality and review the quality development plan. Four, IBO is a rigorous education programme.
On the average from approximately 140,000 IB Diploma candidates every year, 80% are awarded the Diploma with only 0.1% (140) getting the maximum IB Score of 45 points.-PR