International Baccalaureate removes exam registration fees

The move is part of efforts to make the curriculum – widely taught in the UAE – more affordable

On July 6, more than 170,000 pupils worldwide received their IB Diploma and Career-related programme results.
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Exam registration fees for International Baccalaureate pupils are to be scrapped as part of efforts to make the qualification more affordable and accessible.

A charge of $172 (Dh630) was previously imposed for learners to be allowed to sit tests held under the global curriculum, which is widely taught in the UAE.

The IB curriculum is taught to nearly two million pupils aged between three and 19 at 5,000 schools across more than 150 countries.

A 2018 report by UK property consultancy Frank Knight found that IB was the fastest growing curriculum in Dubai, where it is studied by more than 13,000 pupils.

Dr Siva Kumari, director general of IB, which was founded in 1968, said the education body was eager to reduce the financial burden on schools and pupils.

"A key part of our mission is to continue developing our organisation for the international student community who are well-rounded, multilingual and open-minded citizens – a new generation educated in ways that enable them to respond thoughtfully to global, national and local challenges."

Removing the registration fee is the latest in a series of decisions by the IB to make the curriculum more affordable.

The IB recently provided discounts for schools that offer three or more IB programmes and offered some courses free of charge to IB teachers.

"We are focused on developing the deep and broad thinkers that the world needs in the Fourth Industrial Revolution," said Haif Bannayan, the IB's director of outreach and conferences.

"Developing agile and thoughtful learners is fundamental to IB's educational philosophy and that is why we believe that our world-class model for 21st-century workforce development must be more accessible."