SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

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Wannaretireearly
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SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by Wannaretireearly » Sun Sep 08, 2019 11:05 am

I have a 3rd grader and 6th grader at Stratford school (private) in the east bay. This school finishes at 8th grade.

We have an ok/good public high school in our catchment area that were considering.

Need some advice from folks in the area, please.
Feel free to direct message me if it helps to get into specifics.

- dont mind paying private tuition for the high school if that's the optimal path. International Baccaulate (IB) schools? Thoughts? Which ones?

- dont want to travel across the bay to the peninsula

- reluctant to go down to san jose. But may consider if that really gets the kids into a good program/exposure etc

- local high school is rated 7 or 8. Again pm me and I can provide details.

- private school is now part of our budget. Painful, but I guess were 50% there at least with one kid. Consider college 50% funded via 529's.

- local east bay folks will know some of the issues with local school district. Budget shortfalls year in year. [OT comment removed by admin LadyGeek] few $ get to public schools. Growing teacher pension liabilities, classes/services being cut. Not great. Not too convinced the public school picture will be better in a few years. When we want college guidance counselors, etc.

Thoughts please? Especially our SF bay area friends.

Many thanks.
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Wannaretireearly
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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs

Post by Wannaretireearly » Sun Sep 08, 2019 12:16 pm

Bump!
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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Sep 08, 2019 6:00 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (school choice).
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bmr12
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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by bmr12 » Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:07 pm

Sorry, I don’t live in the Bay Area. When it came time for us to shop for the right IB program and high school, it quickly became apparently that each school district in our metro area only had one or two high schools offering a diploma at all. From there, it was pretty easy to determine which were attracting the top talent and which were not. Find the school(s) attracting the top students (one way is to look at the number of National Merit Semifinalists per year—often available in a district press release). Parents of top students tend to flock to the same subset of schools. Top teaching talent and top students yield top results. Assuming that’s what you are after.

On the flip side, the IB diploma is a very rigorous program requiring tons of extra study, essays, community service and the like. While it no doubt helps in college admission, it may well leave your child with little to no time for anything else. If it is what your student wants, go for it. If they are ambivalent and you are pushing it on them it could be a much less pleasant outcome. My kid worked harder in high school than I did at any point in my educational life except maybe grad school.

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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by Wannaretireearly » Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:23 am

bmr12 wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:07 pm
Sorry, I don’t live in the Bay Area. When it came time for us to shop for the right IB program and high school, it quickly became apparently that each school district in our metro area only had one or two high schools offering a diploma at all. From there, it was pretty easy to determine which were attracting the top talent and which were not. Find the school(s) attracting the top students (one way is to look at the number of National Merit Semifinalists per year—often available in a district press release). Parents of top students tend to flock to the same subset of schools. Top teaching talent and top students yield top results. Assuming that’s what you are after.

On the flip side, the IB diploma is a very rigorous program requiring tons of extra study, essays, community service and the like. While it no doubt helps in college admission, it may well leave your child with little to no time for anything else. If it is what your student wants, go for it. If they are ambivalent and you are pushing it on them it could be a much less pleasant outcome. My kid worked harder in high school than I did at any point in my educational life except maybe grad school.
Thank you. The only IB school in the SF (south) east bay is in Dublin. Quarry Lane. Good reviews, bit dw and I think it's too far. And opposite from San Jose/Sunnyvale where work is.
The search goes on. Local high school is looking more and more enticing. But who knows, need to go to open days etc.
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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by SheReadsHere719 » Tue Sep 10, 2019 2:51 pm

IB Diploma graduate here – my thoughts:
*Agree with @bmr12 that my school attracted great students because of the program (we all transferred from our assigned HS within the district). Agree that it is a tremendous amount of work to complete; I still managed some other activities, but it was a rigorous program
*I would not put a lot of stock in the school ranking or college guidance counselors if the school has IB. It’s a bubble junior & senior year with all classes in the program, and those teachers will be well-versed in college readiness. For schools generally, I would also consider the availability and number of AP courses offered as a useful metric
*It prepared me exceptionally well for college courses for studying and writing. In terms of college credits, it depends on the school, but if your student is taking 3-4 AP classes Junior & Senior year, the credits should be about equivalent to the diploma. I had credits from the IB Diploma, 1 AP test, and some Junior College credits, and entered college with sophomore standing

I would reevaluate in 2 years when the 6th–grader is closer to this decision as I’m sure they will have opinions about what they would like to do. If they have close friends and their current school, they may be reluctant to transfer. I was motivated to go the IB school and I’m glad I did but agree with @bmr12 that the drive will need to originate with the student.

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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by Tamarind » Tue Sep 10, 2019 3:45 pm

I'm also an IB graduate (from a public high school). Feel free to PM if you have questions about that experience, though I'm not familiar with Bay area schools.

In my case, I commuted 45 minutes each way to the next county over. IB was my ticket out of a very rural county with failing schools. My high school was urban and combined very high IB and AP scores with high drop out rate. Currently my high school is ranked a 7 on GreatSchools, but I had excellent teachers. I graduated with 2 years college credit and a full tuition scholarship to a top-50 college.

A 7 or 8 is more than good enough provided at least some of the teachers in your kids' favorite subject areas are strong. I'm a big proponent of public schools and I think they have benefits for kids that outweigh the lack of fancy programs.

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Re: SF bay area: high school IB programs [International Baccalaureate]

Post by ThatGuy » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:32 pm

Wannaretireearly wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:23 am
bmr12 wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:07 pm
Sorry, I don’t live in the Bay Area. When it came time for us to shop for the right IB program and high school, it quickly became apparently that each school district in our metro area only had one or two high schools offering a diploma at all. From there, it was pretty easy to determine which were attracting the top talent and which were not. Find the school(s) attracting the top students (one way is to look at the number of National Merit Semifinalists per year—often available in a district press release). Parents of top students tend to flock to the same subset of schools. Top teaching talent and top students yield top results. Assuming that’s what you are after.

On the flip side, the IB diploma is a very rigorous program requiring tons of extra study, essays, community service and the like. While it no doubt helps in college admission, it may well leave your child with little to no time for anything else. If it is what your student wants, go for it. If they are ambivalent and you are pushing it on them it could be a much less pleasant outcome. My kid worked harder in high school than I did at any point in my educational life except maybe grad school.
Thank you. The only IB school in the SF (south) east bay is in Dublin. Quarry Lane. Good reviews, bit dw and I think it's too far. And opposite from San Jose/Sunnyvale where work is.
The search goes on. Local high school is looking more and more enticing. But who knows, need to go to open days etc.
I don't see Dublin listed on the IB site?

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