Redmond schools drop Intl. Baccalaureate program

Cost cited; students, parents, teachers upset

Redmond schools cancel IB program

REDMOND, Ore. - The Redmond School District has announced it's cutting its International Baccalaureate program at Redmond High School.

On Wednesday, the district sent out a letter to parents and students, explaining why the cut was being made.

Students, parents and teachers packed the district office for the Wednesday nights board meeting.

"It's really hard," Redmond High Junior Makenna Conley said. "We were promised that we would get this program, and now it seems like they might not be giving it to us."

She says she is waiting in limbo, not sure if the work she has already put into the program was for nothing.

"It was very hard for me not to cry when they were talking to us about it," Conley said.

He dad Tim, shares her sentiment.

"As a parent of a junior who is in her first year of the IB program, she is being left high and dry," Tim Conley said.

He added that he understands what the district has to do.

"I understand that IB is not necessarily something our district can financially afford right now," Conley said.

Superintendent Michael McIntosh says this year, five students will graduate from the IB program.

"The additional cost that we have put into the system is significantly more," McIntosh said.

In the letter to parents, the district says the program is costly and difficult to offer when only a small number of students are seeking the benefits of the program.

McIntosh says he supports International Baccalaureate and understands how much work teachers have put into it. He gave them "kudos" at the meeting, hoping their passion would continue as the district makes the switch.

"I would just encourage all of us to channel, redirect that in a positive direction and not be defeatist in any way," McIntosh said.

The program will close down at the end of the school year. What will take it's place is still unknown, but the district says there are options.

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