Schools Announce New Programs

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The Kokomo School Corp. trustees have approved a program that will allow students to gain entrepreneurial experience at local businesses. The school corporation has also announced it will begin offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program next year. May 5, 2014

News Release

KOKOMO, Ind. - During its regular May Board of School Trustees meeting Monday (May 5th), Dr. Mike Sargent, Principal at Kokomo High School, presented the Kokomo School Corporation Board with the official authorization certificate for KHS to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program for the 2014-2015 school year to IB students entering their junior year. The DP certificate presented joins similar notifications of authorization for PYP (Primary Years Program) at Sycamore and Lafayette Park Elementary International schools and for MYP (Middle Years Program) at Central Middle International School and Kokomo High School.

With this authorization, KHS becomes only the 22nd high school in Indiana to offer the IB Diploma Program. Further, this DP authorization makes Kokomo School Corporation only the 2nd school district in Indiana to offer IB programs for students in grades K through 12.

Dr. Hauswald noted that this IB Diploma Program provides students at Kokomo High School yet another pathway to graduation, and commended KHS Principal Dr. Mike Sargent and his staff for their efforts to make this a reality for the more than 30 IB students eligible to participate.

Dr. Sargent explained that earning DP authorization was an intense process that required high-level professional development and detailed curricular development by the teachers.

"This 3-year process entailed a deep understanding of the IB philosophy and significant planning, while creating course outlines that include the required rigor and depth to prepare students for both the internal and external assessments," Dr. Sargent said. "Each teacher is required to receive IB Category I training while implementing that professional development as they prepare to teach their respected course. The IB Organization verified the course outlines, and then authorized Kokomo High School to offer the Diploma Program."

For Lori Magnuson, who serves as the IB MYP (Middle Years Program for grades 6-10) and DP (Diploma Program for grades 11-12) Coordinator for Kokomo High School and Central Middle International School, the Diploma Program gives Kokomo High School graduates more opportunities at the college level.

"In addition to helping our KHS students be even more prepared for the rigor of college, our full Diploma Program students can start college as sophomores," Ms. Magnuson explained. "Diploma Program students often are recruited and given priority when applying to major universities. For example, one Big Ten university admissions office seeks DP students because they tell us that is what their college professors want in the classes. In addition, DP students have an opportunity to compete for scholarships at that university for full tuition."

IB MYP Language A / Years 4-5 (freshmen and sophomores) instructor Melanie Peoples considers the authorization of the Diploma Program as exciting news for both students and teachers at Kokomo High School.

"Since DP encourages students to become inquirers and thinkers, this authorization further supports our efforts at KHS as teachers for students to become actively responsible for their learning," Ms. Peoples explained. "This rigorous program is dedicated to educational excellence that includes an international perspective. Most DP courses include research, problem solving, analytical writing, collaboration and other essential communication skills. The IB program is well known for setting high standards and emphasizing creative and critical thinking embedded within a challenging curriculum."

Ms. Magnuson reinforced the rigor of the DP curriculum by noting that these students learn how to balance the rigor of academics, community service, and school activities prior to leaving for a college campus.

"Our DP courses are not only rigorous, but also they incorporate international mindedness, learner profiles and a Theory of Knowledge," Ms. Magnuson added. "All DP students write an extended essay on a topic of their choice, and through this process our students learn how to research and write critically. Universities are looking for DP students."

Dr. Sargent added that the Diploma Program provides students with another option for enrolling in rigorous courses, a deeper understanding of the acquisition of knowledge through the two-semester Theory of Knowledge course, where they write a detailed research paper in the Extended Essay and complete a learning experience through a Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) project.

"The purpose of the coursework, Extended Essay, Theory of Knowledge course, and CAS project is to provide each DP student with a holistic educational experience while preparing each student for post secondary education," Dr. Sargent said. "Additionally, DP continues the IB philosophy of international mindedness and character education in the Learner Profile from the Primary Years and Middle Years programs offered at Lafayette Park, Sycamore, and Central."

Ms. Peoples believes the authorization of DP opens doors for many Kokomo High School students. Ms. Peoples noted that all students may participate with varying degrees of intensity as some may pursue the IB diploma while others may wish to take only one or two of the DB courses.

"I feel fortunate as an instructor to teach at a high school that offers 22 AP (Advanced Placement) classes and is an authorized Diploma Program IB School," Ms. Peoples noted.

"Also, I am happy we are seeking IBCC certification. These are simply examples of how KHS is working hard to create multiple pathways for our students to be prepared for life after graduation. Whether the connections are global, community, project oriented, internships, or career related experiences – this administration seeks meaningful structures that link subject areas and encompass personal experiences and connections to the real world."

May 5, 2014

News Release

KOKOMO, Ind. - During its regular May Board of School Trustees meeting Monday (May 5th), the Board approved a Contracted Services Agreement for Morgan Young to serve as a teacher for the community-based CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) Program that begins for the 2014-2015 school year.

According to Dana Davis, Kokomo CEO Advisory Board Chair, more than 35 Investors have each pledged $1,000 each year for 3 years to support this innovative program.

"The idea to bring the CEO class concept to Kokomo was hatched when a Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance (GKEDA) member saw the program in action in a neighboring state," Ms. Davis explained. "Through the leadership of GKEDA and the Kokomo School Corporation, along with a generous grant ($40,000) from the Community Foundation of Howard County, we are excited to bring this cooperative opportunity to students and businesses in the greater Kokomo area."

Kokomo School Corporation will serve as the Kokomo CEO class administrator, and the class will be open to students from the nine area corporations - Kokomo, Eastern, Northwestern, Taylor, Western, Clinton Central, Lewis Cass, Maconaquah, and Tri-Central - that are served by the Kokomo Area Career Center. GKEDA will serve as the Administrative Agent for the CEO Program and will manage the Investor funds, as well as the day-to-day fiscal management and links with the business community.

KACC Director Jim Stradling believes the CEO Program is a wonderful opportunity for Kokomo area students.

"This is a great cooperative effort between Kokomo area businesses and the Kokomo area schools," Mr. Stradling said. "This course allows students to meet, interview, and be mentored by local business and industry leaders. O