• Amy Bomke
    International Baccalaureate Coordinator

    IB Coordinator Amy Bomke, CDO’s new IB Program Coordinator, has worked in education for 25 years. She has a BS in Secondary Education with a major in Spanish, a minor in English and an MA in Spanish that was completed through study abroad in Spain, with additional graduate credits in literature and teaching writing. She taught Spanish and English at the high school and middle school levels for seven years before moving to higher education to teach Spanish at Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis for 18 years and served as the coordinator for the 100 level Spanish Program for six of those. Most recently, Amy worked in the Teacher Certification Program at Pima Community College designing and facilitating professional development for new teachers and their mentors. She is also the mom to two CDO students!

     IB Logo Student wearing gloves and googles pours solution into a beaker

    Canyon del Oro was authorized to offer the Diploma Programme in February 2012, for students in Grades 11 & 12.

    What is IB?

    • The International Baccalaureate (IB) focuses on having students make connections; explore relationships between all subjects, and learn about the world in ways that reach beyond each single subject/discipline.
    • IB education encourages students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners with international awareness - qualities highly sought after by the most selective colleges and universities in the United States and around the world.
    • The IB encourages a positive attitude toward learning by encouraging students to ask challenging questions, to reflect critically, to develop research skills, to learn how to learn, and to participate in community service designed to build leadership skills.
    • IB education focuses on ways students can connect learning beyond the classroom into real world action.


     Why IB at Canyon del Oro?

    By continuing to provide rigorous academic standards at Canyon del Oro High School, the International Baccalaureate provides opportunities for students to be prepared compete in the 21st Century marketplace. IB learners strive to be inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced and reflective all characteristics that are valued in the Amphitheater School district and at Canyon del Oro High School.

    • Canyon del Oro is one of only two International Baccalaureate schools in Southern Arizona (and the only high school in Oro Valley).

    Below, Assistant Dean of Admission for Stanford University, Debra Von Bargen, who has firsthand experience working with many IB graduates, including her son, discusses the 21st century skills developed as result of the IB Diploma Programme.

    What sets IB apart?

    • IB programmes are recognized around the world and ensure an increased adaptability and mobility for IB students. The curriculum and pedagogy of IB programmes focus on international perspectives of learning and teaching, while insisting that students fully explore their home culture and language.
    • IB World Schools must undergo an exhaustive authorization process in order to offer one or more of the programmes, which includes a study of the school's resources and commitment to the IB mission and philosophy.
    • IB teachers participate in a wide variety of professional development opportunities to constantly update their knowledge and share their expertise with colleagues around the world.
    • The core components of IB programmes encourage students to participate in creative and service-oriented activities, while at the same time emphasizing the importance of reflection on a personal and academic level. (From the IB website)
    • The IB Diploma Programme receives international recognition with potential scholarships. For a sampling visit: 50 Scholarships for new IB graduates

    The mission statement of the IB is expressed in the IB Learner Profile. The Learner Profile is a central theme supported in subjects throughout the IB Programmes and represents the mission statement in action. Find out more about the IB Mission Statement in the video below:

    IB & AP Considerations

    • IB Courses are not intended to replace AP classes at Canyon del Oro High School. AP courses will continue to represent an attractive college-prep course of study for students who desire more flexibility in their class schedules.
    • In contrast, IB Diploma Candidates will take college level courses in each of the six areas of academic study with a comprehensive focus on learning with a global focus.
    • Both programs will enable high achieving students to earn college credit and academic accolades.
    • The IB Diploma requires the study of a second language in both the junior and senior years emphasizing linguistic skills and increased cultural understanding.
    • IB courses provide multiple assessment types in which students are assessed in practical applications such as fieldwork, lab experiments, literary performances, mathematical investigations, presentations, reflections and formal exams. 
    • Each course has a series of assessments thus giving a more accurate depiction of student learning.
    • Students can also choose to take 1-3 IB Courses in combination with non-IB courses. 


    Hear from actual DP Students in the video below: