IB-Related Issues

Understanding the Role of the IB in Relation to World Schools

To better understand how the IB may address your question, concern or complaint, it is important to learn and understand the IB's role in relation to World Schools. As you may know, the IB World Schools are either public or private entities independent of the IB Organization, and the IB does not own, operate or govern authorized schools. Therefore, the IB may be limited in the types of issues it can help address. For example, the IB does not oversee, create or mandate policy related to a school's employment, health and safety, admissions, discipline, or communication processes and decisions. Also, because the authorization process for an IB programme takes place between the IB and a World School, the IB cannot investigate a complaint against a World School on behalf of a third party, although it can receive helpful feedback. Article 2 of the General Regulations explains the role and responsibilities of schools, and states in part the following:

“…Because the IB Organization is not a teaching institution and does not provide teaching services to students, the [programme] is implemented and taught by IB World Schools (hereinafter “school(s)”). The schools are private or state entities, all of which are entirely independent from the IB Organization and solely responsible for the implementation and quality of teaching of the [programme]. …The schools are responsible for informing legal guardians regarding the general characteristics of the [programme] and how the school implements it. …The IB Organization cannot guarantee that a school will remain capable and willing to implement the [programme]. Consequently, the schools bear sole responsibility towards students and legal guardians if a school’s authorization to implement the [programme] is withdrawn by the IB Organization or a school decides to terminate its authorization.”

Other Helpful Links:

Option for IB-related Questions and Formal Complaints

IB Answers, launched in 2011, provides external stakeholders a fast and efficient way to ask many IB-related questions by submitting them online, phoning in, or through a search process. IB Answers is also the route for formal IB Complaints submission. IB Answers may also provide information on the Ombudsman as an option if appropriate or if requested.

Specific Procedures

For certain issues, such as marking, remarking, and school authorization, there may be specific procedures that apply and must be followed to raise a concern formally. The Ombudsman can be contacted at any time for guidance and information on policies, regulations, procedures and practices, to raise issues regarding whether processes, and to enquire regarding informal options.