HMS Earns International Baccalaureate World School Authorization

HMS Earns International Baccalaureate World School Authorization

Harvest Magnet Middle School in Napa is now officially designated an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School, having received notification last week that the school has demonstrated that all program requirements are in place to meet the IBO’s accreditation requirements. Until last week, the school was referred to as a “candidate” for authorization, while still offering the IB Middle Years Program. The school also received seven commendations related to teacher practices, collaborative curriculum planning, and lesson design that were beyond the requirements for authorization and will benefit the implementation of the IB Program.

“This authorization is the culmination of years of tremendous work, heart and commitment to enhancing student learning on the part of faculty, staff, students, parents, the District, and our community to innovate and transform our school,” said Jenny Banta, IB coordinator at Harvest. “IB’s student-centered and inquiry-based academic program, with its emphasis on intercultural understanding, is an ideal way to equip our young people with a love of learning and a global-mindset as they head into high school, college and careers, and become active, contributing members of our society.”

The heart of IB programs is the Learner Profile, which outlines 10 attributes that are taught and encouraged by IB World Schools. IB learners strive to be Inquirers, Knowledgeable, Thinkers, Communicators, Principled, Open-minded, Caring, Risk-takers, Balanced and Reflective.

In the classroom, students learn by asking questions, exploring, collaborating, researching and presenting their knowledge in a variety of ways. Language development and interdisciplinary connections are central to all eight IB subject areas: Math; Language & Literature; Individuals & Societies (History); Science, Physical & Health Education; Language Acquisition (Spanish); Performing/Visual Arts; and Design Cycle.

“The concept of critical thinking becomes very real for students when they tackle an issue or question in one class, then see that same question raised in another class,” said Cathern Kipsey, a parent club member and parent of both a former and a current Harvest student. “The change in focus helps them to understand the importance of considering many points of view,” she said.

Established in 1968, IB offers four programs for students ages 3 to 19. At NVUSD, Bel Aire Park Magnet Elementary School and Mt. George Elementary School are authorized in the Primary Years Program. Harvest Magnet Middle School will be the only school authorized to present the Middle Years Program in the entire North Bay.

“Our 18,000 students are diverse and our academic offerings should be, as well,” said NVUSD Board of Trustees President Robb Felder. “Adding an authorized IB middle school to our rich mix reinforces our stated commitment to ensure our students have the skills necessary for college and careers in today’s world,” he said.

Harvest Magnet Middle School is at 2449 Old Sonoma Road in Napa and serves 706 students in grades 6 through 8 and, through Open Enrollment lottery, draws students from Yountville, Napa, American Canyon and other North Bay communities.

To find out more about the HMS IB program contact Jenny Banta at and visit For more on NVUSD schools and other magnet offerings, visit and select the Our Schools pull-down menu.