Executive Director Letter by Pat Prather

Dear Administrators and Coordinators,

It’s that time of year again when the words “Back to School” are seen everywhere On behalf of our CAWS Board of Directors, we welcome you back and look forward to seeing you at our various CAWS events that are planned for the year. These gatherings allow you to share experiences with your colleagues, gain new insights into your profession, and consciously concentrate on enjoying yourself.

We have in place for our bi-annual conferences what we think are two exciting programs and speakers. The Fall Forum at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in San Jose, Oct. 24th, 2011, will be titled “Opening Access to an IB Education” featuring Chris Mannix as the keynote speaker. Chris is the Curriculum and Assessment Head of the Hexagon Core in the Diploma Programme and Head of the new IB Career-related Certificate. The DP breakout will focus on the IBCC and be led by Natasha Deflorian, IBCC Associate Manager, Chris Mannix and Marjorie McConnell from the CA State Dep’t of Ed. MYP participants will examine “Changing the MYP Continuum”, and PYP participants will explore the idea of “Moving the PYP Forward”.

Our Spring Seminar takes place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Irvine on February 27, 2012. The focus will be on “Inquiry and Individualized Learning” and feature Ellen Alquist, International Citizen and Educational Consultant throughout the US and around the world. A firm believer in differentiated instruction, Ellen will inspire educators at your school to reach every student. Ellen currently partners with Heart for Education, an inquiry and differentiation based consultancy agency.

Our IB authorized Teacher Training Workshops will take place again at Granlibakken Lodge in Lake Tahoe, CA June 23-26 for Diploma and June 26-29 for MYP/PYP. A flyer listing the classes to be offered is enclosed in this packet. More detailed online registration information will come later via our website

Several roundtables are in the planning stages. Sometime in November one will be held for Diploma in the north. In the south, one is planned for MYP/PYP Nov. 5th and one for PYP on March 16th. Check the CAWS calendar on the website for specifics. Good news for all schools – Annual dues for all IB CA schools have been reduced and the scholarship amounts increased. Please pay your dues and submit your applications for scholarships. Let’s help out our students who need financial assistance to continue their education, and also recognize the teachers and administrators who provide the strong leadership that IB schools need.

To stay abreast of what is happening in CAWS, you have to regularly check our website www.caws.org: conference agendas and registrations, yearly calendar, CA legislation, schools, teacher training workshops, roundtable dates and places. Opening access to an IB education to more individual students is the dominant theme this year for CAWS and this quote from Lydia Marie Child says it very well “The boughs of no two trees ever have the same arrangement. Nature always produces individuals; she never produces classes.

Have a great year and we look forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones.

Best regards,


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