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The International Baccalaureate (IB) was first established in 1968 as a two-year advanced secondary school curriculum, the successful completion of which earned students the IB diploma.
In the decades since it began, the IB program has been expanded to include the primary and middle school grades. Most recently, the Career-Related Programme (CP) was added in 2012, and uses the framework and values of the IB diploma program to address the needs of students ages 16-19 in a career-related course of study. To complete the CP students take a minimum of two IB Diploma Programme (DP) courses, a core program consisting of four components, including a career-related study, and sit standardized exams.
The reasons that families and students choose the IB career-related program are varied, and include:
The program is intended for students who have a very good sense of the career that they intend to move into, and who are interested in developing skills relevant to success in that field while they complete their high school graduation requirements.
The IB curriculum is managed and administered to provide a well-rounded, high quality, advanced course of study that delivers the core material while challenging students to apply their knowledge and skills through collaboration, discussion, and communication.
Accreditation is granted through the International Baccalaureate in Geneva, Switzerland. The term "International Baccalaureate" is used generically, and can refer to the organization, the degree, or the degree programs. Prior to 2007 the main accrediting body was known formally as the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO), though since then is known as, simply, the International Baccalaureate.
Schools intending to offer an IB program undertake a 3-4 year authorization/accreditation process, with timelines depending on when a school begins its formal academic year. Every school accredited to offer any of the four core IB programs is known as an IB World School. Any school that is engaged in the process of accreditation is known as an IB Candidate School.
All accredited schools take part in an ongoing process of review and development. In some cases that process is supported and/or facilitated by sub-regional organizations, one example being the International Baccalaureate Schools of Ontario (IBSO). However, accreditation is only available through the central accrediting body.