Harrisburg Academy Earns Full International Baccalaureate Continuum School Status

Harrisburg Academy is now recognized as a Full International Baccalaureate (IB) Continuum School, one of just 2% of schools in the United States to reach that status. HA recently received authorization to offer the Middle Years Programme (MYP), in conjunction with its already existing Primary Years Programme (PYP) and Diploma Programme (DP). Students then have the option to complete the components of the IB Core, a rigorous extended essay, and an independently designed and implemented service project, and take the IB exams. Upon completion of these core components and a passing IB exam score, students receive an IB Diploma which is formally recognized at more than 1,800 institutions worldwide. Acceptance rates of IB graduates at Ivy League colleges outstrip their peers.

“I am proud of our esteemed faculty and visionary leadership team who have worked diligently over the past several years to achieve a level of performance that marks the Academy as a Full IB  Continuum School for preschool-aged children through high school seniors,” proclaimed Adrian Allan, Harrisburg Academy Head of School. “We owe a debt of gratitude, as well, to Academy board members, parents, guardians, sponsors, and our students who hold us and themselves to the highest standards of an IB education. Their commitment to excellence enabled us to earn this impressive global distinction which provides exciting opportunities for student success. Our students are seen, known and celebrated here and we are proud of that!”
Designed as a comprehensive curriculum from ages 3 through 18, the International Baccalaureate is unique because of its academic rigor, commitment to developing a global perspective, teaching young people how to think critically and collaboratively to solve problems, and building personal and interpersonal skills.
“The result of the IB approach to education is students who have an enthusiastic, lifelong quest for learning, research, and the skill set to solve problems and develop new approaches with the aim of making the world a better place for all,” added Lindsay Bowman, Harrisburg Academy Head of Middle and Upper Schools. “Nurturing students’ empathy and character underpin the entire program at Harrisburg Academy. We also focus on teaching our students how to learn and not what to learn in our community service-focused Academy that offers small class sizes and big opportunities.”

Lakshmi Shrikantia, MYP Science Teacher and Director of the Center for Experimental Sciences, noted, “I am excited that we are now a Full IB Continuum School. The MYP program emphasizes the process of learning and reflecting to grow and improve. The Year 3 MYP Community Project, for example, helps build confidence and provides students with the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities in problem-solving, research and collaboration within their immediate community or at a national or global level.”

“I really like the IB Programme because the grading scale pushes me to do better than I think I normally would. The way the criteria is set up, it gives teachers more room to have students explore their passions, and it makes class more fun because I’m able to incorporate things that I like into my learning so it feels more connected to me,” added Soumaya I., Class of ’26.

Melissa Swauger, parent of an HA 6th grader, emphasized, “The program has given our child the independence and agency to explore his passions and his scholastic abilities together, because it incorporates students’ passions into learning. He doesn’t feel like he’s learning; he’s enjoying every lesson and he’s doing so well in middle school. The closeness to his teachers and enjoyment he gets from the program inspire him to want to do better, so it drives him to keep setting higher goals.”