Kramer Elementary officially received its International Baccalaureate designation.

In other words, the Preston Hollow school is now part of a prestigious global program with “unique academic rigor” and “emphasis on students’ personal development.” Its curriculum is considered to be more rigorous and holistic than other academic programs.

IB students read, write and participate in interactive projects more than their peers. They’re also not taught in a traditional classroom environment, according to K.C. Cox, Preston Hollow Elementary’s IB coordinator.

“Instead of, ‘Here’s worksheets, here’s what we’re covering today, guys — turn to chapter 7,’ we would have one of our scholars get up and do a lecture or presentation, just like you would see in a college class,” she told the Advocate in 2015. “It’s not a quiet setting, not a sit-at-your-desk-and-take-notes kind of environment.”

Although Kramer received its Primary Years Programme designation this year, the school began implementing the curriculum in 2014. Former principal Katherine Eska oversaw Kramer’s transition.

“There’s a couple things I’m most proud of, and that’s one of them,” she says.

It takes at least three years to complete the lengthy IB authorization process, which Preston Hollow Elementary, Franklin Middle School and Hillcrest High School are working to receive. Once that happens, students can continue the IB program until they graduate.

There are three other IB schools in the district: J.L. Long Middle School, Harry Stone Montessori Academy and Woodrow Wilson High School. Only a handful of private schools — such as  Alcuin School, several Uplift charter schools, The Westwood School and Dallas International School — are recognized as IB.

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