TAIB wants readers of this site to know that for the past six years, we have been open to listening to the defenders of IB, both students and parents. We are searching for widespread evidence that an IB education doesn't produce communicationally challenged, radical environmentalist youth with ferverently left-wing/anti-American leanings. If you take a quick read through our Pro-IB Comments page, if you have any sense of common decency and manners, you will see that the vast majority of comments we have received are nasty, angry, filled with foul language and even death threats. Can anyone name another educational program (with the exception of those opposed to teaching Intelligent Design) where such utter hatred occurs? We can't.
This page is dedicated to an IB Mom, Michelle Rosson, who had gotten on TAIB's e-mail update list. (For new readers, TAIB sends out courtesy updates whenever we add a new article or page. If you are not on our update list and wish to be added, please send your e-mail address to: firstname.lastname@example.org )
Anyway, Michelle was on our list and took exception to an update regarding an article about a local newspaper in MI which edited a letter from parents who withdrew their children from an IB PYP school. Most of TAIB's subscribers are opposed to IB, so Michelle's e-mail took TAIB a little off guard. TAIB replied to Michelle that she had been removed from the TAIB update e-mail list. This evoked outrage from Ms. Rosson. So, TAIB encouraged some of our other readers to reply to Ms. Rosson in our stead. To date, Ms. Rosson has not been forthcoming with a reply to Peyton Wolcott's Media Query. However, should Ms. Rosson decide to substantiate any of her claims about IB, TAIB and Peyton Wolcott are prepared to publish them immediately online. As stated elsewhere on this website, TAIB is not an advertisement for IB. If you want to read an advertisement for IB, please visit www.ibo.org.
The following e-mails begin with Ms. Rosson's: Lisa, I am continually concerned that your biased and slanted web site in which I first started reviewing under false pretenses "truth about IB" is completely and utterly out of control. You do not care about the truth, you care about negative propaganda that is far from the truth.
Did it ever once occur to you to stop your terror and over blown fears and really look at a broader view? Have you once sat down with college admissions officers and discussed IB's rigor and breadth of learning which is truly being recognized over memorization? You pit AP and IB against each other, but just this weekend I spoke with a very prominent admissions counselor who explained that the difference between AP and IB should be viewed on horizontal and vertical planes......AP is horizontal, there is material taught at a higher level than standard high school curriculum, there is memorization of facts and figures and there is the test to prove success. AP has been around over 30 years and much of the content and testing is the same as 30 years ago. IB is vertical and drives down deeper into subjects and supports the subjects with Extended Essays, Projects, TOK discussion and debate and then test. She clearly said the rigor and time management skills acquired with students taking the IB route prepared them for the shock, freedom and rigor of their first year at University.
This website is not TRUTH, it is a biased, scare tactic aversion to change. It is people and organizations like yours that are causing our children to continually fall down and behind in the ranks of education.
There is a great big world out there and if you think for one minute that "TRUE AMERICANS" do not have to live, work, succeed or fail in it, you are delusional.
I do not fault AP, at all. As a matter of fact, if sadly, it is the most rigorous program a school has to offer, then AP is it. But, to push your fears, political bias and UN TRUTH on this web site as truth about IB is dishonest and deceitful.
I would suggest you speak with a few college admissions officers and hear what they have to say. I have and I can tell you that they appreciate both AP and IB. But, where IB is offered and students take the AP route, the AP route is judged as the less rigorous route. I love the fact that my daughter who is thriving in IB has had to think. YES, THINK, not memorize a statistic or fact, but think. This great nation was built by people who were not afraid to work a little harder, and were not afraid to think a little differently and deeper.
It continually saddens me everytime you send out an overzealous, almost panicked email about a slight that you feel someone has dealt your point of view. Your point of view is not well researched and is simply your point of view built on fear.
And by the way, my daughter and her graduating class of IB diploma kids are not socialist, nor are they out to bring sococialistic overhaul to our country. They are actually a group of diverse brilliant kids, Christian, Jewish, Undecided, etc., who have worked their hearts out thinking, analyzing and discussing. My daughter went in as a conservative Christian and remains a conservative Christian today. But, you bet she learned to think a little deeper and not just memorize a fact for a test. And, she clearly realizes that there are others with different points of view and beliefs. She said to me "success will mean toleration and the ability to understand that although someone may think or believe differently, it is what they think and believe and how we bring all of our points of view to the table and work for a better solution is certainly better than a constant bitch fest, where nothing happens".
I can also tell you that our district loves the fact that the teachers in the IB program have to step it up as well. They are evaluated on a higher level and on a level that is out of the politics and tenor of teachers who have grown bored and complacent.
I am not asking you to change your belief, but please change the title of your website. Change the misleading title to anything that truly represents your biased slant. All of the people who want to distrust and build a conspiracy theory around IB, will be with you and will continue coming to you. But, the rest of us will be enjoying our kids as we watch them continue to grow and learn in a global economy with a worldly point of view and not being sheltered or encumbered by a group who still believes that America is the only "right" and "brilliant" nation in the world. Many nations "Rome", "The Soviet Union" have fallen when they cease to learn, and realize they are not the only society on the planet.
Imagine for a moment if you will, a society of children and young adults with the foundation of greatness that built this nation. On this foundation they add building blocks of a worldly point of view and an open mind on ways that we can work together in a global society and business world. Imagine a group of young adults coming out of college wanting to listen and solve problems and not a group of young adults stuck in the old philosophy "I am American, that makes me right and I have the only solution to every problem". I know it because I tested and pass a test.
I am actually a bit sorry for you, because had you or if you ever choose to leave your prejudice behind, you may find a very different and honest point of view about IB.
IB is not perfect, but I have found few things in life that are perfect. And it is fact that with our current educational system, we are falling behind. Maybe you should also build a forum around the failures of our current educational system.
In summary, there is little TRUTH on your website, until you are challenged to post a positive and unbiased point of view about IB and then it is sparse and posted with your biased sarcasm.
Sincerely, Michelle Rosson Global Business Woman and Proud IB Parent
After being advised she was being removed from the courtesy update list, Ms. Rosson replied:
Wow. I express a different point of view and you delete me from your mailing list. Sounds a bit socialistic to me.
So, now the shoe is on the other foot. Below you chastize MLive and wonder if you will be published? Well, I now wonder if you are at all interested in discussion and challenging points of view and I am sure that I will not get published on your website.
I think my question is answered by my removal from your mailing list.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
Obviously, Ms. Rosson entertained hopes of getting published on TAIB, thereby granting her consent for us to share her thoughts with our readers. I replied:
Do tell, what is "socialistic" about removing you from my courtesy update list? No one pays me to send out updates. I do it as a free service for those who understand and appreciate the truths I expose here at TAIB. You obviously do not appreciate my updates and therefore, don't deserve to receive any further updates. Nothing "socialistic" about that! Now, if you PAID to receive updates and I arbitrarily eliminated you because you expressed a contrary view, THAT would be fascist, not socialist.
To which Michelle replied:
No one said you are paid. I said you push an agenda and how can the TRUTH exist when you are so biased and one sided in your point of view. You are promoting your point a view supported by a group of people who are Anti IB. I would be curious to know how many supporters you have, have actually had a child complete the program, successfully.
You claim truth but make little attempt except under pressure to explore the whole story and you feed on propaganda.
When I disagree with you, I am immediately eliminated. This is how information is controlled in socialistic nations. One controlled point of view.
What truly saddens me is that you use the word "Truth About IB", but it is one sided truth. What would be wonderful is if someone of your energy and talent truly sought the facts and gave unbiased and non-sensational information on an education program that has and is seeing much success. Promoting sensationalism and fear is not TRUTH. It is simply propaganda, sensationalism and fear.
My frustration with the site is your claim of TRUTH. If your site was Concerned Citizens Against IB, I would have no complaint because your agenda would be clear and you would not be hiding behind a title that leads people to believe you represent facts with truly informational pros and cons supported with documented facts about a program. The hysteria and sensationalism is reminiscent of fanatics and extremist, not the truth and details of a program.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
TAIB then published Ms. Rosson's letter and asked a few readers to respond as frankly, we are tired of being called liars. Peyton Wolcott sent Ms. Rosson a Media Query:
Michelle, I'm updating a recent commentary on International Baccalaureate and would like to add your responses to the following:
Where are you located (city, state) and what's the name of the IB-related school your daughter attended in which school district? (When I Google "Michelle Rosson" and "International Baccalaureate" there are no hits; would have assumed that a global businesswoman who is a passionate supporter of IB would have an Internet presence if only as a parent volunteer at her daughter's school. Is this your real name or a nom de plume? If the latter, why not write using your real name?)
What's the name of the "very prominent admissions counselor" you have just spoken with? At which institution?
"Rigor" is a word International Baccalaureate uses to describe itself; how do you define rigor?
You sign your name with the notation, "global business woman." What is your occupation and what is the name of your company? Are you an employee or do you own this company yourself or with others?
Could you please define "conservative Christian"? Which church? Which values do you consider to be conservative? Where for example does your daughter stand on abortion at any stage of gestation? As a conservative Christian is she for or against eugenics?
Why do you say Rome and the Soviet Union fell because they "ceased to learn"? On what factual basis do you say this?
While tolerance for each other is a great goal and good, on what factual historical basis does your daughter believe that greater tolerance will solve the world's practical problems when countries are opposed to each other's core values? Do you believe that the United States should adopt shariah law, for example? What about honor killings? Do you believe stoning women who are accused of crimes is a good idea that we in the United States should tolerate and/or embrace and/or allow here? Also, can you please name some countries that have been great and survived long-term because they were tolerant?
Would it be correct to assume from your email that you do not believe that America is an exceptional nation in the history of the world? Can you name any other nations which have been free for 230 years or more in the modern era whose citizens enjoy the privileges and freedoms that we do here in the U.S.? Are you and your daughter both U.S. citizens? Do you hold dual citizenships with any other country and if so which?
Does your daughter know how to multiply and divide to twelve with aumaticity without a calculator? If so, was she drilled in school or did you and/or a tutor work with her? How important a skill do you consider this?
Where do you stand on the following: global warming? sustainable development? eminent domain? the United Nations?
Thank you for your time --
Publisher, Public Ed Commentary
Founder, National Grassroots School Check Register Movement
Unfortunately, Ms. Rosson was not willing to be forthcoming with such factual information before grilling Peyton. Here is her reply:
I will be glad to elaborate on your questions. Be assured, I use my real name because I have nothing to hide. I am simply a professional, educated woman who works in a global world and who happens to have a child who has thrived and found great success in the IB program.
Before I go in depth. I would like to know a bit more about you, Mr. Peyton Wolcott. What is the context of the article that you are writing and what is your background?
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
Michelle, thank you for your response. When you get a chance to sit down at a computer or laptop -- it's hard to see much on a Blackberry -- please go to my website (the link I sent along with my address information plus the two primary things I do) where you'll find the information you seek. You can also Google my name, or you can search Yahoo where currently there are 2.68 million results for searches with a narrowed focus, my name in quotes. Here are the first eight Yahoo offers; you could try "About" first:
Perhaps you can help me: I've published a commentary with a great deal of detailed information regarding International Baccalaureate and although I've telephoned and written IB many times they have not refuted any of the information published. I'm a very careful journalist and attempt to the best of my ability to contact everyone about whom I write. Do you see anything factually incorrect here? If so, please let me know along with your supporting documentation.
Looking forward to hearing back from you, and thank you for your time.
Publisher, Public Ed Commentary
Founder, National Grassroots School Check Register Movement
Uh oh. Peyton is a real person with real, verifiable credentials. How will Michelle respond?
Again, I have no agenda and your biased agenda is why you would be looking for my name associated with some web site. I am a business woman, successful business woman who is a parent of a young adult thriving in an IB program. Period. No agenda. Best of luck to you in your endeavors. Disappointingly, I read you web site. And, I can clearly see your opinion. I will not engage in a dialogue of any sorts with any one who would post that there have been no successful graduates of IB, or suggest that IB graduates criminals. Many schools graduate criminals, as well and you fail to expound on this fact. And, the reason the IBO, I assume does not give you the time of day is because they do not have to and they are not going to engage in rhetoric.
Nor am I. I stated my point of view to TAIB and received sarcastic remarks and accusation of arrogance. I am not arrogant and I do appreciate the fact that your web sit does not claim to hold the "TRUTH ABOUT IB" and hide behind a title that implies you do.
I have clearly written about our experience in the program and the positive experience that it has been.
I am going to stick with coverage from sources that are not distorting and over sensationalizing. And please remember, I can truly have a legitimate point of view, I have a child in the program.
Best of Luck to you and your causes. Freedom of speech is what makes this country great!
Freedom of choice is what will keep us great and I am very proud to have had the choice for my child to be in a challenging, thriving IB program.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
So there you have it. When asked to back up her claims, as is the case with most defenders of IB, they label those of us who oppose IB with ad hominems, pack up their toys and flee.
I have one question for this woman... without memorization just how does she think her kid is 'remembering" any of this socialistic IB propaganda?
Does her kid have a magic IB fairy that comes down to hand deliver the IB indoctrination materials to her just when her brains needs the information for her tests? Good grief, without memorization we would all resemble brain injury victims who have short memory and long term memory skills that are severely impaired. Just what does this mother think all of those DEEP talks are about?
Give me a break...IB is about nothing more then insane repetition to the point of hardcore indoctrination. Which is exactly why I pulled my kid out. There is NO room for true critical thinking when kid is in a program that uses repetition ad nauseam for as long as it takes to change the true critical thinking of that kid to the ideology of what IB demands they leave IB with.
Take care and hang in there
sorry, I couldn't sit and read through the whole email. it is always the same thing blagh blagh blagh. ms rossen did you ever read a book instead of listening to the crap they deal you when you go to the college admissions office? that is right crap! it is all a load of first handed crap because college admissions live for people like you. When they see someone like you walking in the door they take their crap hats out and put them on and say here comes another socialist that is the major makeup of our foundation. If colleges didnt have people like you they wouldn't survive. i am not a fan of glenn beck however, i heard the comparison from someone on pjtv his book arguing with idiots is exactly the same arguments you have in college. this has already taken up too much of my time so for now keep listening to the crap the socialist are feeding you. You may want to read The Harsh Truth About Public Schools By Bruce N. Shortt. You will find that Lisa is not a fear monger or using scare tactics. - name withheld by request
My reply to this lady who knows that the truth about IB isn't the truth is the story about a congressman speaking to a tribe in Africa and the more promises he made the louder the crowd shouted which encouraged him to continue with the promises. At the end the crowd was even more wildly shouting the cry of BUSHWAH!!
After the speech the tribal leader was taking the congressman on a tour through the village and when they reached the cattle pens, he cautioned the congressman "Watch out, don't step in the bushwah."
The shouting this gal gets from the regular readers and contributors of the "truth" is BUSHWAH!
You can use my name and mention I am a 75 year old man who served as a captain in the US airforce, am a retired teacher and taught mostly public secondary school but also in three colleges and have attended 8 universities and completed all course work for the PhD in communication plus I have traveled to a considerable number of countries. A journalist over 40 years and a research writer for a national TV documentary for several years, I know how to ferret out and evaluate informa-tion.
Massey Ranch Elementary school in the Pearland ISD in Texas has a mandatory IB program and it involved a move out of the district to get my eight year old daughter out of that BUSHWAH. This lady can go to their web and see for herself that of 11 elementary schools, ten have consistently received the highest rating of "exemplary" from the state and ever since Massey came into being about 5 or 6 years ago, they have been rated at the lower "recognized." So much for her damn IB.
The only parents that I met out of many questioned that knew even the least about IB also took their two children elsewhere.
My daughter has performed in 14 musicals, some produced by out local college, makes good grades, and is entering her third semester of studying Chinese. She has lived several months in the Philippines and has spent time in Alaska,New Mexico, Florida and Texas as well as visiting Washington, DC, New York City, Seattle, San Francisco, La Vegas, Denver, and several other cities. I would guarantee (it's the TRUTH) that she has more concept about globalization than the majority of those teaching IB in the lower grades.
I'l love to hear what this lady's background includes.
Yours for less IB BUSHWAH,
Dear Truth About IB Director:
I am a writer for a paper in Colorado Springs, Co.I was assigned the topic of International Baccalaureate after a parent came in to the paper’s office to complain about IB and the effect it has on his children.In my research about IB I found your site.I have checked much of the information you have presented and find it to be the “truth” - i.e. it can be verified.Contrary to what the parent who is a global business woman writes, your information is factual.
I also found out that IB is pure hype. Exquisite marketing to be sure, but still hype.IB does not produce a more educated student at all - especially for the costs involved.In many cases, it produces one sided thinkers who are taught that way in the IB classrooms and especially in the Theories of knowledge classes where children are given free reign to express their thoughts but never taught how to draw conclusions or verify their opinion with facts! They are usually taught that the U.S.is BAD!EVIL!GREEDY!
Here is an example brought by the father who wanted an investigation done into IB: His daughter and other students learned that there is a water shortage in many countries.This is of worthwhile notice. Careful use of water is important everywhere. However, the lesson then went on to talk about how much water theUnited Statesuses and how that somehow deprives the water starved children inAfricawho live some 4-5000 miles away. The lesson is that somehow the U.S.’s use of water is restricting African children’s use of water and theU.S.is BAD!See how illogical this lesson is?Yet parents such as the global business woman who wrote to this site don’t see that lack of logic.
Of course the lesson also doesn’t go into the positive side of the issue such as the billions of dollars of aid that the United States send to those same water starved countries nor does it mention the corruption that goes on in those same countries and the reasons why the people don’t have water – i.e. the money is stolen before it even reaches the population and thus water outlets never get built!
No mention was made of the fact that theUnited Statesprovides much of the food to the entire world and thus needs water to grow those crops and that it also is the only country to provide most of the aid to the world especially in times of emergency – including clean water!
The child who attended this class was made to feel guilty for bathing or taking a shower and she even cried when the mother ran water to rinse dishes before putting them in the dishwasher!This is typical of IB lectures and the reaction of the children who attend these classes.They are taught to become disdainful of theUnited States– not to appreciate its greatness.
The father reported that IB does this anti-American bias in both his children’s classrooms and he asked the paper to do an investigation into IB.Here is just a short sample of what I found and it totally negates what the global businesswoman writes in her emotional letter to this website.
1.IB is the most expensive K-12 education today.No other educational program even comes close to the costs of IB – including AP (Advanced Placement).It has outrageous fees of anywhere from $8500. to $10,000. per year per school to “belong” to IB.It charges $135.00 per student for membership in IB at the high school level.IF you had ten schools paying 10K a year for a membership fee, that’s one hundred thousand dollars.For a membership fee?That amount of money could hire ten teacher aids to help struggling students for the entire year!2.It spends money like our congress does with no thought as to being “thrifty.”For example, it holds an annual meeting every year which is fine.Most companies do this type activity.However, they opt for less elegant and pricy rooms and venues for their meetings.Not so with IB – it is holding its annual meeting at theFontainebleauinFloridawhere rooms are $400. a night. School districts, parents, and taxpayers around the nation provide the money for this spending through the outrageous fees IB charges the schools and students to “belong” to the program!
3.The “rigor” that IB hypes just isn’t there.In some cases, especially that of science and math, AP students scores much higher in knowledge than IB.The nonsense that this parent writes about going vertical and horizontal and learning “deeper” is merely a talking point of IB parents who are convinced by the exquisite advertising that IB does and they really don’t know what it truly means as it has no meaning – kind of like Obama’s hope and change!It means what the person using it wants it to mean. I have seen this used as an argument issue in many letters - it is meaningless.
I suggest that this IB parent really open her eyes and look at what this website has to say about IB.I have found it to be the “truth” and your information can be verified.I do give credit to your site whenever I quote something.