BSGE’s class of 2015 received a school record 49 IB diplomas, smashing the previous record set by the class of 2014 who received 40. In addition, they set a record with 77% of those graduating receiving the diploma also breaking the previous year’s record of 69%.
Commenting on the achievement, 10th and 11th grade English teacher, Ms. Connie You, said that the students “did incredibly well but that’s something we can’t really take credit for since there were so many strong students with great work habits.” Because the students were so well prepared, Ms. You added, she didn’t have the usual “heart bumping moment when looking at the IB exam results.”
Achieving these results reflects the progress of both the staff and students. Ms. Jennifer Dikes, 12th Grade History teacher and IB Diploma coordinator said, “We [the staff] have figured out how to create the path for students [to the IB Diploma] but these students figured out how to follow and stay on the path.”
Though most of the IB exams are taken toward the end of students’ senior years, a time normally characterized in many high schools by slacking off, BSGE students were still focused on doing well on these exams. 2015 graduate, Joseline Marin said, “I know once the IB exams came around everyone really placed all their efforts to study and help each other study. As you may have heard, our class took over Panera Bread when it came to study groups. So it’s great to hear that so many of us received the diploma.”
Max Fischman, also of the class of 2015, shared a similar sentiment; “To me the diploma was very worth it and was amazing to receive because I know what I put in to get it.”
One important factor that helped the class of 2015 receive so many IB Diplomas was their performance in IB HL Art where scores went up significantly from the previous year. IB Art Teacher, Ms. Gretchen Schwarz said that this group of students was the first to go through the five-year program that she and Mr. Lucas Sheridan, also an IB Art Teacher at BSGE, were able to put in place for grades 8 through 12. She added that these students had found “an approach to making art that took them beyond traditional drawing and painting media and those ways of working allowed them to better represent their ideas which led to more points and to complex, interesting work that was engaging for them.”
Adela Goldsmith, of last year’s graduating class, was also the first BSGE student to receive a 7 in IB Art. Of Ms. Goldsmith, Ms. Schwarz said that “she documented her process and ideas explicitly and comprehensibly and the degree of clarity both in her ideas and in her writing got her a lot points with the IB moderators. There were several people who I predicted 7s for who should have gotten it also” but Ms. Goldsmith was the only one who received one and also received and IB diploma.
While a capstone of their experience at BSGE, the work toward receiving the IB Diploma and graduating from BSGE has paid off in college as well. Steven Becker ’15 explained, “Thanks to the diploma program, college has been relatively manageable and almost like a continuation from high school which is nice.”
Elio Megaro ’15 has had a similar experience. “I can honestly say that IB prepared me to handle the stress extremely well. The amount of work and level we were asked to perform at has definitely carried on to my undergraduate experience.”
In addition to work habits, students also developed other skills as well. Mr. Megaro said, “being out of BSGE made me realize how prepared I was for public speaking and taking on leadership roles.” He added, “it might sound crazy, but be thankful for CAS [Creativity, Action, Service], charts and things as simple as Jim’s math songs; CAS makes you well rounded, charts help you organize information and math songs…well it will make calculus so much easier.”
Ms. Marin also shared other benefits of receiving the IB Diploma and graduating from BSGE. She said that, “the best part is receiving credit for classes. It saves you time and money. The work we did was tough, and time consuming but all that time I spent writing research papers and long class periods actually prepared me for college. As a freshman in college I have a lot of lectures each containing 500+ students and I always see people fall asleep or leave because they can’t handle an hour long lecture on the habits of the mind or the structure of atoms but for me it’s not hard to pay attention for that long because I’ve always had long classes compared to those in other high schools.”
Thinking back to his time at BSGE, Mr. Fischman shared, “I do miss my time at BSGE and I wouldn’t trade those experiences that I had for anything. College may be difficult but all we can do is keep grinding. Just like we did in BSGE.”
BSGE IB Diploma Statistics
|Graduating Year||# of Seniors||Seniors Registered for IB Exams||Seniors who Completed all IB Requirements||Diplomas Awarded||% of those registered who received the IB Diploma||% of graduating seniors who received the IB Diploma|