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International Baccalaureate

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

The IB Diploma Programme is designed as an academically challenging and balanced programme of education with final examinations that prepares students for success at university and life beyond. The programme is taught over two years and has gained recognition and respect from the world's leading universities.
The IB Learner Profile
IB Tutoring Hours
Tuesday: 8:00am - 9:15am
Wednesday: 12:30 - 1:30pm
Friday: 8:00am - 9:15am

Dear Cholla IB students and Families,

My name is Ilse Billings and I am the new IB Coordinator for the Diploma Programme.  I am following into Ms. Kathy Jensen’s footsteps.  Cholla is very dear to my heart.  I started my career as an educator in Charger country in 1993.  I taught World History and one elective class called European Cultures. Besides teaching, I also was a School Counselor and a TUSD Central Office Administrator.  For seven years I coordinated and managed the Primary Years and Middle Years Programme at a K-8 school and lead the school to authorization for both programmes.  I am very familiar with the International Baccalaureate Organization.

My story begins in Antwerp, Belgium were I was born and raised.  As a child I had the good fortune to travel with my family to various European countries. That is how I developed my interest for learning languages and world cultures.  To this day, I am an avid traveler and it is my personal goal to visit every continent in our world, including Antarctica.  My other passion is the arts.  I have lived in Tucson for 29 years and Los Angeles for two.  I love the Sonoran Desert and the South West, Native, as well as Mexican cultures. 

I am very happy to be the new Diploma Programme Coordinator.  I will support Cholla’s IB students to reach their end goal.  Whether that is to receive the Full Diploma or the Certificate and to get into a four- year university/college of their choice either with, without or a partial scholarship.

I can be contacted by email at ilse.billings@tusd1.org.  My office phone is 520-225-4116.
Colleges and Universities value IB.

The average acceptance rate of IB students into university/college is 22% higher than the average acceptance rate of the total population.
A 2011 study of almost 25, 000 IB Diploma and certificate students found that IB students were more likely than the national average to attend collge full-time, with nearly 70% attending selective or more selected colleges.

Students enrolled in IB are more likely to succeed in higher education.

A 2010 study of IB students' experiences after high school found that IB students graduated from college at higher rates, with 81% of IB students graduating within 6 years of enrolling full-time at a 4-year institution, compared to the national average of 57%.
Inquirers: They develop their natural curiosity. They acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research and show independence in learning. They actively enjoy learning and this love of learning will be sustained throughout their lives.

Knowledgeable: They explore concepts, ideas and issues that have local and global significance. In so doing, they acquire in-depth knowledge and develop understanding across a broad and balanced range of disciplines.

Thinkers: They exercise initiative in applying thinking skills critically and creatively to recognize and approach complex problems, and make reasoned, ethical decisions.

Communicators: They understand and express ideas and information confidently and creatively in more than one language and in a variety of modes of communication. They work effectively and willingly in collaboration with others.

Principled: They act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness, justice and respect for the dignity of the individual, groups and communities. They take responsibility for their own actions and the consequesces that accompany them.

Open-minded: They understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the prespectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow from the experience.

Caring: They show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment.

Risk-takers: They approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs.

Balanced: They understand the importance of intellectual, physical and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for themselves and others.

Reflective: They give thoughtful consideration to their own learning and experience. They are able to assess and understand their strengths and limitations in order to support their learning and personal development.
"IB is well known to us as excellent preparation. Success in an IB programme correlates well with success at Harvard. We are pleased to see the credential of the IB Diploma Programme on the transcript."

-Maryln McGrath Lewis, Assistant Dean of Admissions, Harvard University

"In our minds, there is no more challenging curriculum than the IB curriculum. Not only does it prepare students for a demanding college programme, but the IB curriculum also instills in students a love of learning and an understanding of the truly interdisciplinary nature of education. Instead of working on each subject in a vacuum, IB students are shown how each of their classes connects both with the other classes and with the world around them."

-Thyra L. Briggs, Dean of Enrollment, Sarah Lawrence College
Class of 2011

"I've matured, in my opinion, so much in these past two years of school and I believe that the International Baccalaureate Programme has made me grow even more than I had ever expected... I wasn't ever bored and the teachers were the most incredible. I felt as if I was more involved in my learning process... since I have started the IB programme I have thought in more complex and universal ways than I had thought prior."

"If I had the chance, I would take the programme over again... By going through these two years of [IB], I can now say I am a college student, the first one in my family to go to a four year college."

"I feel I am well prepared for college since I have been given the proper tools to succeed."

Class of 2012

"These have been two years of significant personal and educational growth... Had someone told me in the beginning of this programme that I woudl be learning so much that it would carry into my every day life, I would never have believed it. However, now there is no denying the difference this level of education has had in my life."

“Being in IB has taught me so much about life in so many different ways I could never have imagined. . . . I feel more confident that I will be successful in college if I apply all the strategies I learned in IB.”

“I have definitely gained the knowledge and motivation I couldn’t have learned anywhere else.”

“Joining IB was one of the best decisions I made.”
Fast Facts
Diploma Programme
IB DP Student Handbook 2019 (in PDF)
Examples of University Policies
Cholla High School IB Assessment Policy (in PDF)
Cholla High School IB Academic Honestly Policy (in PDF)
Cholla High School IB Language Policy (in PDF)
Cholla High School IB Exceptional Education Policy (in PDF)
Cholla High School IB Description of Admissions Policy (in PDF)
Cholla High School CAS Handbook (in PDF)
IB Programme Information Packet (in PDF)
IB Student Acceptance Rate at Selective Universities
IB General Regulations ENG
IB General Regulations SPAN
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