IB programs should be examined as alternate to AP programs

Grace Fay, Opinion Editor

The time has come again for students to stress over AP tests, and with it the ever present question: is it worth it?

AP Programs have long been the standard for advanced classes in high school. But the actual effectiveness of these classes in helping students reach their full intellectual potential has increasingly been scrutinized.

If one strips away all of the hype that surrounds AP Programs, at its core the program where a student who can afford it pays $94 to study all year to take one standardized test that will maybe get them out of an intro class in college. Ignored are the facts that many cannot afford it, many are not good standardized test takers and the class only prepares you for the test, leaving very little room for creative learning.

The AP Program is run like a business, and literally sucks the creativity out of students and teachers alike. There is a better solution, and ETHS should consider it.

The International Baccalaureate (IB) is a much more holistic approach to advanced learning. According to their website, they have three main components to their education. Inquiry, where the program “feature(s) structured inquiry both into established bodies of knowledge and into complex problems”; action, where students actually apply what they are learning to real life problems and solutions; and lastly, reflection, where students don’t end their class with a test but instead a series of projects and essays that they work on throughout the year. The IB program is holistic, flexible, and much more open to different styles of learning.

Our school is committed to every student, and therefore should adopt a program that caters to every students style of learning. ETHS should analyze their approach to advanced classes, and consider the IB Program for future advanced classes.