The IB Mission Statement

The International Baccalaureate Program aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who can help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the International Baccalaureate Organization works with schools, governments, and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people with their differences can also be right.

Your MYP coordinator:
Vicky Virnich, Assistant Principal

What is the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)?

The MYP is designed for students aged 11 to 16. John F. Kennedy offers years four and five of the Middle Years Programme; years one, two and three are offered at our feeder school, Henry World. The MYP provides a framework of learning that encourages students to become creative, critical and reflective thinkers. The MYP emphasizes intellectual challenge, encouraging students to make connections between their studies in traditional subjects and the real world. It fosters the development of skills for communication, intercultural understanding and global engagement—essential qualities for young people who are becoming global leaders. The MYP aligns with Common Core State Standards, Colorado Academic Standards, English Language Development Standards, and College and Career Readiness Standards. The Middle Years Programme builds upon the knowledge, skills and attitudes developed in the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP), which is offered in southwest Denver at Sabin World School, and prepares students to meet the academic challenges of the IB Diploma Programme (DP), which we offer here at John F. Kennedy High School. Southwest Denver is one of only fourteen schools in North America to offer the full IB continuum of PYP all the way to DP!

The IB Middle Years Programme:

  • addresses holistically students’ intellectual, social, emotional and physical well-being
  • provides students opportunities to develop the knowledge, attitudes and skills they need in order to manage complexity and take responsible action for the future
  • ensures breadth and depth of understanding through study in eight subject groups
  • requires the study of at least two languages (language of instruction and additional language of choice) to support students in understanding their own cultures and those of others
  • empowers students to participate in service within the community
  • helps to prepare students for further education, the workplace, and a lifetime of learning.

The Curriculum

The MYP consists of eight subject groups: language acquisition, language and literature, individuals and societies, sciences, mathematics, arts, physical and health education, and design.

Student study is supported by a minimum of 50 hours of instruction per subject group in each academic year.

The MYP aims to help students develop their personal understanding, their emerging sense of self and responsibility in their community. Service learning is part of how teachers plan units of study, and students are expected to perform and reflect on 20 hours of community service in 9th grade, and 30 hours in 10th grade.

MYP teachers organize the curriculum with appropriate attention to:

  • Teaching and learning in context.

Students learn best when their learning experiences have context and are connected to their lives and the world that they have experienced. Using global contexts, MYP students explore human identity, global challenges and what it means to be internationally minded.

  • Conceptual understanding.

Concepts are big ideas that have relevance within specific disciplines and across subject areas. MYP students use concepts as a vehicle to inquire into issues and ideas of personal, local and global significance and examine knowledge holistically.


At the end of 10th grade, or year five of the MYP, students complete the MYP Project, which gives students the opportunity to work on a research project of their choosing, with a teacher-supervisor, in order to demonstrate their learning as an MYP student. This culminating project will begin in August, and will be showcased at the IB Celebration Night in May.

Your Personal Project Coordinator:
Bryony Brack-Robertson