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**Exciting News: Joseph Williams Elementary to Launch IB Primary Years Program Next Year**

The commencement of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program at Joseph Williams Elementary School is scheduled for the 2024-2025 academic year.

Designed to cultivate a passion for learning through student inquiry, the IB PYP magnet program is integrated across the entire school curriculum.

According to Jackie Johnson, the spokesperson for Alachua County Public Schools, the IB PYP model underscores the importance of collaborative learning among both students and educators.

Emphasizing inclusivity, Johnson highlighted that the program is tailored for all students, aiming to ensure that every child within the school benefits from and actively participates in the program.

By integrating state and local curricula, the IB PYP program at Joseph Williams Elementary School aims to not only meet but surpass state educational standards.

The initiative to expand IB programs within Alachua County, particularly at Joseph Williams Elementary, stems from Superintendent Shane Andrew’s prior experience at Eastside High School, where an IB program has been notably successful.

The diverse student population and the school’s capacity for student growth were key factors in selecting Joseph Williams for the IB PYP implementation.

Existing students designated as gifted and talented at Joseph Williams will seamlessly transition into the IB PYP program.

Former Eastside High School IB program participant, Claire Kuntz, expressed how the IB program enriched her academic pursuits and broadened her perspectives.

Kuntz believes that the IB PYP program will spark curiosity and a love for learning among elementary students, fostering a deep interest in education.

Applications for magnet schools opened on Jan. 16, allowing families to apply to a maximum of three programs online.

Following the closure of applications on Feb. 13, 50% of program slots will be filled by schools, with the remaining 50% allocated through a random lottery among students meeting the program requirements.

Notifications regarding admission offers will be sent to families, who will then have a deadline to accept or decline the offers. Waitlisted students may receive offers throughout the summer and up to 15 days into the school year.

Kimberly Neal, the director of state reporting, anticipates a high volume of applicants for the upcoming 2024-2025 school year due to increased publicity efforts.

Each magnet program offers a varying number of seats, with elementary programs providing 36 seats each, middle school programs ranging from 44 to 132 seats, and high school programs accommodating between 18 to 150 students.

Despite the inclusion of zoned and gifted students, there are still available seats for families interested in the IB PYP program at Joseph Williams Elementary School.

For further inquiries, reach out to Megan Howard at Contact Megan Howard. Follow her on Twitter @meganmhxward.

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Megan Howard

Megan Howard, a second-year journalism major and K-12 Education reporter for The Alligator, enjoys rewatching the Eras Tour movie and delving into The Hunger Games series when she’s not immersed in writing.