April 2009 Newsletter

Pat Prather – Executive Director
Spring break 2009 brings a welcome respite for schools and staff reeling from a difficult school year filled with unease and uncertainty. Not knowing what disconcerting news each new day will bring makes us wonder when some balance will be restored to our lives and to our world. Hopefully your vacation time has helped you renew your resolve and your psyche in preparation for the final weeks before IB testing begins and graduation ceremonies conclude this long year. Let us hope that 2010 will bring all of you some rewards for your patience and fortitude during these tough times.

As this year draws to a close, with this newsletter I want to bring you up to date on the happenings in CAWS so that you can begin to make your plans for the remainder of 2009 and into 2010. Please check in often on the website so that you don't miss out on any of our events or the latest information for schools.
CAWS Annual Fall Conference – November 1-2, 2009 (Great News)

We are extremely pleased to be able to report that Drew Deutsch, Regional Director IB Americas, has accepted our invitation to be the guest speaker at the CAWS Annual Fall Conference in San Diego at the Sheraton Suites Hotel, November 2nd. His talk will focus on the IB's 2020 vision followed by a question and answer period then breakout sessions to let each of the three programmes address issues relating to that vision. Early registration will take place the evening of the 1st and hotel rooms have been reserved for those arriving then. Put the dates on your calendar and registration will be online on our website when I have further details. Don't miss this chance to meet and greet our regional director.

IB Conference of the Americas, July 9-12, 2009

This first annual 2009 conference challenges us all to take the IB experience to the next level. IB has combined the North America and Latin American offices into IB Americas, and this conference will be designed to attract and serve the IB community from North America, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. The venue is Quebec City, the heart of French Canada, featuring a tri-lingual and tri-cultural conference, the first time this has been attempted in the IB's 40 year history. Also a first time event is CAWS becoming one of the sponsors of the conference. At the SL level of $5000 we receive the following benefits: one complimentary registration, a table in the exhibit hall, an advertisement in the conference program, special mention on the sponsors page, and thanks from the podium. The CAWS Board felt that this sponsorship was a benefit to our association giving us more visibility in the IB world, and allowing us to showcase our Teacher Training Workshops to a larger audience. We hope to see you there.
Seven of our IB schools were on the California School Recognition Program (CSRP) 2009 Distinguished Middle and High Schools list of honorees. They are:
  • Bonita Vista High School, San Diego
  • Great Oak High School, Temecula
  • Mission Viejo High School, Orange
  • Newbury Park High School, Ventura
  • Sunny Hills High School, Orange
  • Trabuco Hills High School, Orange
  • Walnut High School, Los Angeles

Congratulations to each and every one!

Guajome Park Academy in Vista is our featured school for April. Their school was the site of the very successful MYP/DP roundtable in March. A 6-12 charter school, they have blended the MYP/DP Programmes very successfully. Check them out on the website – information and photos from their school.

Please let me know if you would like me to feature your school – just send a short blurb about something exciting or different that your school is doing along with some photos.

Let's show everyone what California schools are doing. The link to IB Fan Page on Facebook which is fearuring some of our schools is listed below.
CIS (College Fair)
The Council of International Schools will bring the college fair back to northern California again in September 2010 because of this year's successful run at the French American International School. Details will be posted as soon as they are available.
ISTA (International Schools Theatre Association)-TaPs Workshop - UPDATE
The dates for the ISTA/TaPS workshop in San Diego are October 15-17, 2009. Seema Sueko, Artistic Director of Mo'olelo and Kiyoko Sims from the Childrens Theatre Company in Minneapolis will teach the master classes. Come and greet Sally Robertson from Cornwall UK, the Chief Executive Director of ISTA, who is excited to be able to come to San Diego to meet with our teachers. TaPS will use the 10th Avenue Theatre as its venue, and within walking distance are the hotel accommodations at the Horton Grand Hotel on Three Eleven Island Avenue in the Gaslamp District of San Diego. The registration details, schedule, hotel information, and scholarship applications are now available on our website. Register your theatre teachers and let them enjoy a fantastic experience and maybe even earn a scholarship to study abroad.
We have this feature on our website. If you know of an IB teacher who needs a job or an IB school that needs a teacher, send me the information and we will post it.
Peter Birdsall, our lobbyist from School Innovations, has written an updated article on the current state of affairs of California legislation for funding of schools, and it is now posted on our website. The first posted article regarding California state legislation contained the names of all the legislators in your area and I hope you were able to contact them with your concerns. The latest addition to the arena is the concept of advocacy. School Innovations has hired a consultant to work with schools and then write articles which feature the good effects of the IB on schools, students, and communities. These articles will then be sent to the legislators as a way to publicize the IB to them. If you think your school has overcome some obstacle, has really reached out to the community, or has some special circumstances to publicize, let me know and I will send your name to the consultant. You can read past legislative articles from the legislative analyst's office by going to http://www.lao.ca.gov.
The latest March roundtable at Guajome Park Academy in Vista for MYP/DP teachers was a success. Scheduled for only a half day on a Saturday with a minimal charge for a continental breakfast, most participants found that very practical and convenient. About thirty-seven participants attended and the sessions were lively and productive. The Coordinator has tentatively agreed to host again next year. .

On April 20th Cynthia Brown from Sierra Elementary in Rocklin will host CAWS second PYP roundtable in northern California. The event will take place at the District Office of the Rocklin Unified School District. Anne Evans will facilitate the day. Hotel accommodations are available to anyone choosing to stay overnight. You may now view all of the details on our website. Contact Cynthia Brown, PYP Coordinator, Sierra Elementary - Tel: 916 788 7141 or e-mail cbrown@rocklin.k12.ca.us

Let me know if you would be interested in or able to host a roundtable next year.
A reminder - The American Museum of Natural History in NY is sponsoring online Professional Teacher Development by offering Seminars on Science, a course which is recognized by the IB. Check our website for details and how to register


The online registration and housing details for this new CAWS teacher training workshop to be held in Lake Tahoe August 14-17 of 2009 are now on the website. There is a flyer you can download; the schedule is posted; the offerings are listed; and you can register your teachers at any time. The best news is that we have been authorized by NY to offer this service to our teachers again next year August 20-23, 2010 in the same place - Granlibakken Lodge, Lake Tahoe.


Our annual Diploma teacher training workshops take place in Lake Tahoe, June 26-30, 2009. Online registration forms and lodging at Granlibakken are posted on the CAWS website including the flyer for you to download. Registration began November 3, 2008. Teachers come from all over the world to attend these classes and they are filling up so be sure to register your teachers now. The 2010 dates are June 25-29.
Try to focus on the good that you do and remember the importance of supporting the unique interests and needs of your students and teachers. Good luck to you and your students with final assessments and Diploma exams!

Best regards,

Pat Prather – Executive Director

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