I am always reluctant to add to the woes and burdens of others but I have an obligation to make clear our appreciation of the Province's IB program, as we have done before now through our website and calendar.
CBU recognizes the IB Diploma as a credential for admission to its degree programs, and IB students are, in fact, given advanced credit recognition. As many as 30 credits can be awarded, and this is due to the value our university places on the rigour and salience of the IB program.
I would like to be sure that, if the CBVRSB re-considers the recent decision concerning the IB program now offered at Sydney Academy, its Board members are aware of the long-standing policy of CBU. As everyone knows, CBU has, in recent years, frequently had to adjust to cuts in public spending, as well as demographic challenges. I have had to stress, in private and in public, that when cuts to public spending happen we know how vital it is to keep alive quality and those aspects of capacity which clearly make a difference.
Not knowing in detail the pressures the CBVRSB finds itself under, but sympathetic nonetheless, I do hope that the value of the IB continuing in Cape Breton will not be ignored. I am of the view that Nova Scotia must expand, not limit, the ability of its school children to engage with the unique rigours of the IB world, and I see this as essential to ensuring the province can fashion and maintain a place in a challenging global economy, and thus offer the chance of sustainable livelihoods to its people.
Certainly, CBU has been helped enormously by its ability to attract, as students, young men and women who have taken full advantage of the IB program here in Cape Breton. Quite a number of them currently hold impressive Marquis Scholarships here and I know they are fully deserving of the support provided.
H. John Harker, LL.D.
President & Vice-Chancellor
Cape Breton University