International Baccalaureate » IB--Candidacy* Middle Years Programme

IB--Candidacy* Middle Years Programme

The goal of pursuing authorization as an International Baccalaureate World School--Middle Years Progamme (MYP) is to prepare HFCA students for the rigorous academic challenges of high school and beyond.
A survey of our parents was conducted by Meitler Consultants as part of our strategic planning process. The results showed that 94% of parents believe our IB programme is a valuable component of HFCA’s academic experience. Given this overwhelming support, HFCA applied for and was accepted as a candidate* in the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program (MYP) in June 2023.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) has four distinct authorization programmes of international education, each with its own candidacy process. The MYP is designed for HFCA students in grades 6-8. 
  • It has always been our intention to pursue authorization for our middle school since earning Primary Years authorization in 2018. Despite not going through the formal process, our middle school emphasizes critical thinking and teamwork skills through inquiry-based learning, resulting in seamless transitions for students from preschool to elementary to middle school.
  • While both the PYP and MYP programmes aim to develop students' critical thinking, inquiry skills, and international-mindedness, they are tailored to different developmental stages and have distinct emphases.
  • The MYP is organized into nine subject groups at HFCA: language and literature, language acquisition, individuals and societies, sciences, mathematics, arts, physical and health education, design, and religion.
  • Key and related concepts are big ideas, which form the basis of teaching and learning in the MYP. They ensure breadth and depth in the curriculum and promote learning within and across traditional disciplines. 
  • Global contexts provide shared starting points for inquiry into what it means to be internationally minded, framing a curriculum that promotes multilingualism, intercultural understanding, and global engagement.
  • Approaches to teaching and learning, a unifying thread throughout all MYP subject groups, are skills that help students manage their own learning. They provide a foundation for success in further education and the world beyond the classroom.
  • Action and service are essential components of the MYP, and set out clear learning outcomes that grow from students’ participation in local and global communities.

During the candidacy* phase, we will focus on teacher development and alignment of our curriculum with the IB framework. Our students will not notice any significant change in the instruction they are accustomed to at HFCA. Upon authorization, we will be the only International Baccalaureate World School in the northwest suburbs and one of only 15 public, private, and magnet schools in Illinois to offer both the IB Primary Years and Middle Years Programmes.

*Candidate status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted. For further information about the IB and its programmes, visit