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International Diploma Programme News

29 June 2016

We have now reached the end of another busy and successful year for the IB Academy, culminating in the excellent work that our students did in Cambodia. 

  • Cambodia Day Four
  • Cambodia CAS Trip

Teachers on those trips have talked in glowing terms about the students’ engagement in the various projects and it certainly will be remembered by all as one of the highlights of their Diploma Programme.

Next year is quite a special year for us as it marks the tenth anniversary of the IB Diploma Programme at BISS Puxi. Things have changed quite a bit from our humble beginnings – our first IB cohort were based on the third and fourth floors of what is now our primary school building and that graduating class consisted of just 26 students.

Almost as soon as our school holidays begin next week, then the final results for Year 13 students are upon us. These will be accessible to students (using their log in details for the IB candidates website) from 12:00 GMT on 6 July. Students (or parents) who need advice or support following the issue of results should get in touch with myself, Mark Weston or Thomas Housham.

Meanwhile, we wish our Year 12 students a very pleasant summer. Although they do have some important work to undertake during the vacation (particularly first drafts of Extended Essay and Mathematics Internal Assessment), there should also be plenty of time for leisure activities and relaxation. School resumes on the 22 August and we look forward to seeing everyone again then.

Andrew Joy, Head of IB Academy

Higher Education

Moving to study in another country requires a lot of preparation. Students about to start their studies in another country can usually find lots of detailed information specific to the country or university they hope to attend on the university’s website or on student forums.

 Things to think about:

  • Accommodation – have you arranged where you will be staying?
  • Student Visas
  • Finance and Budgeting (text books, course costs, food, social life, phone, travel)
  • Essential Items to take with you
  • Skills (can you cook for yourself, use a washing machine, iron?!)
  • Clubs and Societies – what will you get involved in?
  • What support is available to you at the university?

                  Mark Weston, Higher Education Advisor

Creativity, Activity, Service

Cambodia CAS Trip

I asked the teachers who accompany our students to sum up the trip in just three words, words that came up were; active, different, memorable, inspiring, reality, beautiful, sobering, incredible, hot.   If I was to sum up this year’s CAS trip to Cambodia it would be with the following three words; proud, unity and growth.

Proud, as I am incredibly proud with what all our Year 12 students have achieved on this trip. They all engaged with all the activities that were thrown at them, whether it be learning about the recent tragic history of the country by visiting the S21 genocide museum and the Killing Fields, interacting with the children of the Indochina Starfish Foundation or digging a hole to build a toilet for a family.

As a year group, they approach all tasks with positivity and there was no moaning that it was too tough or hard work, contrary at times it was hard to get them to stop and take breaks as they all just wanted to get the job finished. Unity, because as a year group they bounded with each other, looked after each other, motivated and supported each other. It was great to see with the absence of wifi at the camp, all students were socialising and talking with each other. Which leads me to my last word, growth, I think that all our students developed and grew throughout this experience.

They at different times throughout the trip all demonstrated the different learning outcomes for CAS and also showed attributes of the IB learner profile. They all were inquirers and became more knowledgeable when learning about the history, culture and local & global issues that affect Cambodia. They developed their critical thinking whilst approaching ethical issues such as the implications of buying things from children on the street with an open-mind.

They showed a caring nature when interacting with the children of the school and empathy as they witness poverty first hand whilst visiting urban slums. Risk-takers and Communicators – the level of team work was fantastic whilst doing all the activities and especially the project work in the camp which included building toilets for local families, planting trees to combat deforestation and refurbishing a local school.

There were definitely risk-takers who overcame their fears of spiders and bugs not only by staying at the camp surrounded by nature but also by holding and even eating tarantulas! Through this experience, I hope that our students are able to become more balanced and principled young adults.

The last IB learner profile is ‘Reflective’, this also is important in CAS, I look forward to reading our Year 12 reflections for this memorable and hopefully life changing trip.  

And a special note from Ms Graham…

Students learned they can be persistent and enduring and go the extra mile to finish what they set out to do. They discovered that they can be builders, cement mixers, gardeners, painters, and teachers. But most of all listeners: they learned to listen to human beings in need and set out to help them to lake their life a little bit easier. For many putting a smile on a child's face was the biggest reward of this trip.

Ling Coong, CAS Coordinator

Coursework and examinations

IB Diploma Programme Exams

Students have returned from Cambodia this week tired but with just enough energy for one final push as they complete their TOK presentations and prepare for the summer work subjects have set them. By now they should have an outline for their Extended Essay and an outline for their Maths Internal Assessment. These are imperative so the summer work can go as smoothly as possible.

IB Diploma Programme Deadlines

As mentioned above it is important that these pieces of work are completed over the summer along with work for other subjects. We have now published deadlines on Managebac for the academic year 2016-2017. I encourage students to look at the deadlines that apply to them so they can plan ahead and so they know when are the busy times for them and when they have time to start the revision process for the mock exams and the final exams. We encourage students to share these deadlines with parents so please look at the calendar on Managebac along with your kids and reassure them that the workload is managebale with good communication between themselves and their teachers.

The Year 12 deadlines for this week are below:

Date Due


Work Due


Business Management

Management PPT of research


Computer Science

Detailed design

IB Learner Profile

As students approach a summer that they have been warned will be full of challenges as they face their first draft of their Extended Essay and Maths Internal Assessment it is important to remember two things. The first is that determination is needed; I will leave it to the reader to find out which learner profile attribute this is. The second is that it is also important to have some time to relax and to recharge the batteries so they are ready for a very important year in your education. Again please think about what attribute this second point is referring too. The more the learner profile is in the forefront of our minds, the more self-aware we will be as a learner. All that is left for me to do is to wish everyone a happy summer holiday and I will join you for the final charge in August!

Thomas Housham, IB Diploma Programme Coordinator