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International Baccalaureate Diploma at Cairns High

22/03/2016
​Nicholas Cowie, 2013 IB Diploma Graduate with class mates.​
​​…developing inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people.

…creating open-minded thinkers and communicators who are principled risk-takers and lead balanced and reflective lives.

Does this sound like the person you would like your teenager to graduate high school as?

Nicholas Cowie, 2013 International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Graduate, has certainly excelled with these traits. Nicholas is starting his 3rd year of Chemical Engineering at the University of Queensland and has recently returned from a 6 month exchange to Nottingham in England, as part of his degree.

Nicholas commented, “The IB Diploma helped my transition into university through assisting me to develop a strong work ethic and to become an independent learner.  The diploma has inspired my desire to learn things outside of my normal interest areas and this has widened my understanding and perceptions of how knowledge pools interact. Through studying the Diploma I also formed close friendships with fellow IB students and we keep in touch even though we are all over the world.” 

Dr Steve Kavanagh, an IB Biology Teacher and Examiner, and Teacher Leader for the Year 12 QCS Preparation Program at Cairns High, will present at an information evening next week. Dr Kavangh will provide parents and students with details comparing the QCAA and IB courses offered by Cairns High.

Principal, Mrs Toppin commented that “Cairns High offers students in the Cairns region the opportunity to study the IB Diploma as a preparatory university course.  The IB Diploma is recognised world-wide and also allows students the possibility of university credits as offered by Australian universities.  We are impressed by the calibre of graduate that the Diploma develops”.

Cairns State High School is proud to be the only school in the region offering the prestigious International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma as an additional senior pathway. Cairns High became an IB World School in 2010 through a rigorous internationally benchmarked process which takes a minimum of two years. 

The school has welcomed increasingly larger cohorts of young adults who consistently strengthen themselves in the IB learner profile attributes mentioned above. The IB Diploma prepares students for university and encourages them to:

  • learn how to learn
  • ask challenging questions
  • develop a strong sense of their own identity and culture
  • develop the ability to communicate with and understand people from other countries and cultures


Parents and students of current Year 10 students, who are intending to go to university and interested in studying the IB Diploma in Years 11 and 12, are welcome to attend an information evening. The evening will be held next Tuesday 1 March and commences at 5.30pm in Crosswell Hall (entrance via Grafton Street).

IB is more than an education; it’s a world of opportunities.

For further information please contact Laura Mazzolini IB Program Manager or Jill Brough IB Admin Officer on 4050 3015 or ibco@cairnsshs.eq.edu.au.​