Florence One’s IB program ranks second in state exam pass rate

November 6, 2018

FLORENCE, S.C. – The Wilson High School International Baccalaureate (IB) program has the second highest pass rate on subject exams in the state, according to the South Carolina Department of Education.

Wilson has an 84.4 percent pass rate. Travelers Rest has the highest pass rate, but it has only 12 students in the program.

“This is exciting news,” said Brian Howell, director of the International Baccalaureate program for Florence One Schools. “We test approximately 80 students each year, so to have the second highest exam pass rate in the state is pretty incredible.”

Florence One also has a high pass rate for students receiving IB Diplomas, 70.6 percent, putting the program at Wilson higher than both the state and national averages, 55.3 percent and 65.9 percent respectively.

“We have a lot to be proud of,” Howell said. “Our diploma pass rate puts us fourth in the state, and we are closer to the global average of 78.3 percent than many other schools in the nation.”

For the 2017-2018 school year, 25 IB diplomas were awarded, including Wilson’s first bilingual diploma. Ruijia Li earned her diploma in both English and Chinese.

“We are very happy for Ruijia,” Howell said. “Earning an IB diploma takes hard work and determination. To earn dual diplomas is very impressive.”

In Florence One, the IB program is available at three levels: primary years, middle years and diploma. Based on what section of the program they are enrolled in, students attend North Vista Elementary, Williams Middle or Wilson High School. Currently, between the three stages, there are more than 1,000 IB students.

IB students are involved with school and civic activities, completing community service hours as part of the program. Through the structure of the curriculum, students become critical thinkers and learn time management and study skills that will help them in higher education.

“Data shows that the acceptance rate for IB students to the 20 most popular institutions of higher learning is higher than the general population,” Howell said. “This curriculum prepares students for higher level academics, and schools know that.”

For example, Yale University has a 7.88 percent acceptance rate in the general population; IB candidates have a 19 percent acceptance rate. Duke University’s general population acceptance is 16.48 percent compared to a 28 percent IB candidate acceptance.

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