International Baccalaureate Diploma Program

As the first Colorado school to offer the IB program, GW continues to attract the top students from throughout Denver Public Schools and the surrounding suburbs. The IB program develops inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young adults who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. Last year, 90% of GW’s IB seniors earned an IB diploma, outperforming the world mean in 14 of 22 tested subject areas. The GWIB ACT average was a 30. In addition to fulfilling the academic requirements relative to major subject areas, students seeking a nationally-certified IB diploma must also complete a freshmen seminar course and a theory of knowledge course. Students are also required to complete an extended essay and community service requirements.

Students who wish to cap off their college-and-career preparation at George Washington High School with an International Baccalaureate Diploma and who are intending to apply to selective colleges and universities should choose this pathway. Those intending to pursue this pathway in grades 11 and 12 are strongly encouraged to enroll in the full complement of Honors/PB courses in grades 9 and 10.


History of IB

The idea of an International Baccalaureate was first conceived in the early 1960s by a group of teachers in the International School of Geneva in conjunction with other international and national schools in New York, Copenhagen, Cardiff, Paris, Frankfurt, Tehran and Montevideo. The founders of the IB were most concerned with the ever-increasing emphasis on education as the mere delivery of information, the fragmentation of knowledge, and the crowding out of aesthetic and creative experience.

In 1965, the International Baccalaureate Office was established in Geneva. An experimental project was launched in 1967 and offered for use in 20 schools in 1970. In 1984, Lawrence Corsa, the Principal of George Washington High School, applied to the International Office and was granted permission to offer the program. In 1985, GW became the first high school in Colorado to offer the IB program. Since 1987, thirteen more programs have been established in the state. There are more than 475 IB Diploma programs in North America, and over 1,357 worldwide.

For an excellent overview of the international curriculum, visit www.ibo.org