International Baccalaureate World School Candidates

Offering Challenging, High-Quality Programs of International Education 

International Baccalaureate World School Logo

What is International Baccalaureate (IB)?

International Baccalaureate (IB) is a global leader in international education—developing inquiring, knowledgeable, confident, and caring young people. IB programs empower school-aged students to take ownership in their own learning and help them develop future-ready skills to make a difference and thrive in a world that changes fast. 

The Sioux City Community School District is proud to offer three IB world schools. Nodland Elementary, Sunnyside Elementary, and Perry Creek Elementary are authorized International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Program (PYP) schools.  

IB World Schools share a common philosophy—a commitment to improving the teaching and learning of a diverse and inclusive community of students by delivering challenging, high-quality programs of international education that share a powerful vision. Programs focus on teaching students to think critically and independently, and how to inquire with care and logic. IB prepares students to succeed in a world where facts and fiction merge in the news, and where asking the right questions is a crucial skill that will allow them to flourish long after they’ve left our programs. IB is supported by teachers and coordinators who develop and promote IB’s curriculums in almost 5,000 schools globally every day, in over 150 countries around the world. As of April 2023, there were over 7,800 programs being offered worldwide, across over 5,600 schools in 159 countries. 

International Baccalaureate (IB) Mission Statement 

The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end, the organization works with schools, governments, and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate, and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right. 

The PYP Framework  

The Primary Years Program (PYP) is designed for students aged 3 to 12. The PYP presents a balanced curriculum that emphasizes the development of five essential elements: concepts, knowledge, skills, attitude, and action. 

The goal for students is to learn and grow through a global mindset and a desire to participate in the world around them. This occurs through the IB Learner Profile, which follows an inquiry-based approach to student learning. Students’ inquiry is framed by six transdisciplinary themes: 

  1. Sharing the planet 

  2. Who we are 

  3. Where we are in place and time 

  4. How we express ourselves 

  5. How the world works, and 

  6. How we organize ourselves 

PYP students use their initiative to take responsibility and ownership of their learning. By learning through inquiry and reflecting on their own learning, PYP students develop knowledge, conceptual understandings, skills, and the attributes of the IB Learner profile to make a difference in their own lives, their communities, and beyond. 

The IB learner profile in the PYP

At the heart of IB is the “learner profile,” which puts the student at the center of everything. The learner profile is the IB mission statement translated into a set of learning outcomes for the 21st century. The ten qualities of the learner profile inspire and motivate the work of teachers, students, and schools, and serve as the definition of international-mindedness. 

The IB learner profile permeates all facets of school life in the Primary Years Program (PYP). It unites everyone with a common focus: on the whole person, as a lifelong learner. It applies to everyone – students, teachers, parents, or administrators – for they are all continually learning. 

International Baccalaureate learners strive to be: 

IB/PYP Programs of Inquiry (POI)

The Program of Inquiry (POI) serves as a framework for our curriculum and illustrates the major concepts that students will be exploring. It is made up of six units per grade level and four units for transitional kindergarten and kindergarten. Each unit is designed by teachers to help students gain an understanding of the world around them. 

Quality Assurance

Any school wishing to offer the Primary Years Program and attain IB World School status must first go through the authorization process. The requirements for authorization are the same for all schools, even though the process is administered slightly differently in each IB region. The process is designed to ensure schools are well prepared to implement the program successfully. 

This is a challenging program that demands the best from both motivated students and teachers. Schools can access an extensive package of IB professional development for teachers and administrators and commit to ongoing professional development. Teams from the IB organization visit IB World Schools from time to time in order to support an ongoing process of review and development, using standards and practices that apply to all IB World Schools. 

The IB framework encourages partnerships within local communities and around the world, both in person and virtually. Students and teachers are challenged to promote academic integrity and inclusion while continuing to reflect upon and improve their learning and practice. All teachers in IB World Schools have access to the online curriculum center, which provides program documentation, examples of student work, and also acts as the hub of an international online community.  


IB Contacts

For more information about the IB curriculum or to schedule a tour at one of our IB schools, please contact: 

Stacey Vondrak
Perry Creek Elementary IB Coordinator 
Email Stacey

Erin Barth
Nodland & Sunnyside Elementary IB Coordinator  
Email Erin