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30th June 2021

Oakham officially becomes an International Baccalaureate MYP School

Oakham is delighted to officially become an International Baccalaureate MYP World school following three years of successfully embedding the programme across the Lower School and accomplishing an extensive verification visit which took place at the beginning of June.

“20 years after gaining accreditation for the IB Diploma, I’m delighted that Oakham has now officially become an IB MYP World school,” says Henry Price, Headmaster. “The IB MYP is an outstanding framework for preparing and empowering our youngest pupils. It encourages them to become critical, creative and reflective thinkers, as well as pro-actively compassionate global citizens – skills and attributes that are incredibly important to hone and develop at this early age.”

In order to be officially accredited as an IB MYP school, Oakham took part in an extensive two-day verification visit. This saw every aspect of the School’s integration of the IB MYP challenged and checked. Due to Covid, this visit took place virtually – adding an extra level of complexity to the verification. All meetings, observations and assessments took place either on MS Teams or by the provision of film footage from a variety of different lessons. Representatives from the IB Organisation met with the Chair of Trustees, the Headmaster, the Senior Leadership Team, teachers, parents and pupils. All staff who teach the IB MYP took part in the virtual verification visit. Grouped into the relevant subject areas the staff were required to share and showcase how their subjects have developed, integrated and embedded the principles and philosophy of the IB education into their respective lessons.

“It was an incredibly intense couple of days, following three years of extensive curriculum development and adaptions to teaching and learning in the Lower School,” says Dmitriy Ashton, Oakham’s IB MYP Co-ordinator. “The pupils have been benefiting from all of these changes over the last three years, but it is brilliant to now have the ‘official’ status as an IB MYP World school and to have verified that we have met all of the required standards and practices set out by the IB Organisation.”

Oakhamians now, and in future years, will benefit from the Middle Years Programme’s internationally renowned and holistic approach to learning, which develops pupils’ knowledge, attitudes and skills – incorporating intellectual, social, emotional and physical well-being. What does this look like in practice? With the IB MYP pupils are encouraged to:

· understand how their learning fits into the bigger picture, and the world beyond Oakham. Their learning is always set in a wider context, rather than in isolation.

· learn how to ask and answer great questions, big and small, through inquiry. Pupils use what they learn to dig deeper into the fundamental principles of the subjects that they study, exploring exciting factual, conceptual and debatable questions.

· see and explore the links between subjects through interdisciplinary units and a holistic curriculum that knits together across the different academic disciplines.

Pupils are then inspired and empowered to use their learning to make things happen: they think about how action or service can arise from what they learn, and how individually and collectively they can make a difference. For example, all Lower School pupils now take part in the MYP Community Days, where they are encouraged to ‘think global and act local’ to take their shared responsibility for making the world better. 

“Oakham now officially offers a unique and compelling educational journey,” concludes Henry. “By offering the IB MYP to our youngest pupils, we are able to use these years to really encourage and embed critical, creative and reflective thinking across subject areas. Pupils then move on to study for their GCSEs before being able to choose whether they would like to continue their IB journey by studying the IB Diploma, or if they prefer to choose either A-levels or BTEC options. Regardless of what path they take, the IB MYP will have encouraged our pupils to develop the key skills and attributes that are in much demand by employers and universities alike.”

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