The parents often ask me question as well - especially once they know that I'm also a parent and that my children went to schools and moved through the PYP, MYP and DP. Of course they want to be reassured that the choices they made for their own children were good ones. Up until recently I have not had hard data to back up my responses in these conversations, but recently I came across an IB publication about research on the programmes and I downloaded and read the PYP document. Here are the key findings from research:
- A study in public elementary schools in the USA found improvement in school climate in PYP schools - citing increased attention to social-emotional learning and the whole child, transdisciplinary instruction and greater teacher collaboration due to the requirements of the PYP. After a school was authorised the study showed significant improvements in safety, caring relationships, fairness, parent involvement and a decrease in bullying.
- In Colombia a study of PYP students shown the overwhelming majority (89.3%) enjoyed being a student in their school.
- A study of the PYP exhibition in China, Kenya, Mexico, Russia and the UK showed that the exhibition helped develop critical thinking and international mindedness.
- In Australia, a study about wellbeing showed PYP activities and practices promote wellbeing and again indicated more positive school climates, higher levels of teacher engagement, student participation and wellbeing.
- A global study has shown robust results with regards to the assessment literacy of PYP teachers and assessment cultures within PYP schools, based on a holistic and ongoing approach to assessment - the researchers found a rich array of assessment activities and strategies as well as a strong grasp of the evidence required to assess student growth in knowledge, understanding and skills.
- Also in Australia, students at PYP government schools performed at higher levels in reading and numeracy in Years 3 and 5 when compared with students in similar Australian schools.
- In New Zealand, achievement in PYP schools generally exceeded achievement when compared to schools with similar student populations.