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Hey people, not entirely sure where this should be posted and I'm sorry if it's in the wrong category.

I've just started my first year of the DP and my school is pretty new to the program. The grade above doesn't seem to be fairing well and I'm not too confident in the teachers, so I'm facing concerns of whether I should transfer or what, which is freaking me out. So I just want to know about the program in your countries/schools/area and what you think of them.

(I'm currently in Jamaica and considering transferring to a program in Florida. )

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I took the same classes as you, except for Vis Arts [i did Phys at SL instead]. My math, Phys, and Spanish B classes weren't IB classes, but they covered the material pretty much. Our school doesn't fully submerge into IB, I guess. It works out well enough, although people don't really care about how they do on the IB exams. What is important is the grade the teacher gives you at the end of the term, which doesn't necessarily reflect on what you'll get from IB. They don't give us predicted stuff, and things are pretty low key.

I think you should have some faith in your school. Yeah, it's probably going to be harder for you, but every school was new once. If a significant number of the students moved away, how's the school supposed to get better? I'm not saying you should sacrifice yourself or anything. Your education is of the utmost importance. But if you're not gunning for a high grade--if you're more interested in the learning than in the scores, then I don't think your education will be affected.

Moving is pretty drastic. Don't take it lightly. I don't share the same perspective as many people on here, but I have to say that the bonds I made and the things I learned are more than valuable enough to cover a sucky score, and I'm not lacking in ambition, so don't write that off immediately :( [but then again, even if I don't do well on the IB, my chances of getting into uni aren't shot, so if it's IB or nothing for you right now, then you're in a different predicament.]

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I get what you're saying, and I definitely love my friends and stuff, but my other concern is the cost here, which is pretty high and I have siblings and such. So I don't want my parents paying for it if it's not worth it in the end.

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That changes things a bit.

Wouldn't moving be costly too? Are you thinking of asking your entire family to relocate? I have no clue how easy it is for you to study in the US, so I'm just wondering.

If it's your whole family, well you guys know what's going on there.

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That works out then.

One last question. Why do you feel you need to move? Have you talked with the IB2 students? Have you confronted your IB Coordinator? Some teachers really are clueless and cringe-worthy. Others are aware of their weaknesses and try really hard to compensate. If I was in your shoes, I'd feel guilty about possibly wasting money, but then I'd be swayed because I just worry too much. I guess what I'm trying to say is don't feel like everything is up to you. Be you, as cliched as that is. I really hope I'm not giving you bad advice. I'm trying to speak from my perspective, but we're different people with different comfort zones and different...lives. So ultimately, I think your gut instinct will weed out any bad advice.

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^^ Thanks for like taking time to write all this advice. I so get what you're saying and believe me, I so have doubts about this, so right now i'm just going to inquire about the transfer to see if it can go through without hitch and go for it if it comes to that.

My concerns are like leaving my friends and life behind here (even though i'd come back) and like i end up hating it there. There's also the difference in how people are and stuff larger school, the people socialize differently from here in JA. Like I'm afraid that I might leave and not be able to adjust because here we're pretty spoon fed because of how it is, it's very open, you can say things without really offending anyone. We can curse, say crude things in class as jokes with the teachers (granted it's related to the lesson) and they accept all of that and it's no problem because there is that respect there. It's worrying because it's a different place and like i might not be able to say and do things that I do now.

I think i can benefit from the change, like i'll learn to deal with a different environment, which is good since i plan to go to college in the states and here is pretty small and the type of people found in my school is pretty rare to find in the island. Hence i have doubts about being able to adjust

Edited by Rain

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Ahh, yeah. There's always that chance that your new school/peers will be uptight. We have plenty of liberties like you mentioned with some teachers here. Some teachers really don't care, while others are participating in the craziness. And some teachers are strict. I think you're right in seeing that your relationship is built on respect. I'm sure you can build up the same respect elsewhere with some time.

About getting used to having less liberties... there are quote, unquote conservative areas and there are more 'liberal' areas. Imagine growing up in the typical close-minded town. Doesn't matter where you are. Most likely you'll want to leave, explore, figure things out. It doesn't really matter what high school is like because college tends to be radically different if you want it to be. So I don't think you need to force yourself into a more "US" environment because I don't know if moving will make you more compatible. I don't think you'd need to adjust, I guess.

With bigger schools, you tend to be able to find your niche. It's easier to be a loner in a small, "conservative" school, but then again, I attended this tiny school where I stuck out like a sore thumb, but everyone was very welcoming. Southern hospitality at its comfiest.

About being spoon fed.. if you were also talking about academics, well IB is supposed to be equally rigorous everywhere, give or take some. I feel like we have it easy. We procrastinate so much, yet we still manage to be okay. A new school would probably throw you off balance, but I don't think you need to stress about finding your own groove. Maybe I should see how many cliches I can use in one post :(

When you contact the school, if you think you just might transfer, ask to speak to some of the students. Facebook, IM, email, whatever. It helps SO much to have one friendly face. So this way, you get to see if some of the students are down to earth and you get some comfort.

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Good suggestion. I will soooo do that. But first I need to figure out if I can transfer, well if they'll accept me. I'm wondering about the grading system difference, cuz they're talking about GPA of 3.0 or above, but we don't have that and we follow a more British system. I don't think i'll be able to get in O.o....oh dear.

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Hey Rain,

I just thought I would add my experience of moving schools. I moved from the IB in Australia to the IB in England, mainly because my family lives in England and wanted to be more with family. The main pull for me was university. I wanted to go to uni in the UK and even though I am a British Citizen, there's a rule about having to live in the UK three years prior to going to uni or having to pay international fees, so I moved back partly because of that. You should check about uni and stuff too, just to make sure. Also I emailed a few schools in England before and enquired to whether they'd accept me and subjects they had and such. Moving schools doesn't guarantee the same subjects, I had to compromise and do french which I hadn't taken for 2 years. Make sure you like the school size, whether you prefer a smaller environment or a bigger one, too. If possible get a family member to go and look and some before you make a choice? I found it very hard changing schools to England, I constantly compared the IB from my old school to my new school, and some options my old school chose and I did, my new school didn't. So adjusting is hard. Try not to make the choice because of others, but make it for you, that way you have a better chance of transferring successfully if that makes sense..

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