Inderkum Applies For IB Program

Parents Spearheading Effort To Bring Popular Curriculum To Natomas
Anna Vue kept hearing parents say good things about the International Baccalaureate program at Mira Loma High School, so she decided to visit the campus and see it for herself.
“It’s rigorous,” said Vue, a Natomas resident. “I thought, ‘Why can’t we have this program at Inderkum High School?’ I realized it was achievable.”
In late spring 2010, Vue reached out to Inderkum administration but said her calls were not returned. When the school’s new principal George Tapanes was hired, she tried again.
“He said, ‘Let’s work on this together,’” said Vue.
IB is an international education curriculum divided into three programs based on age. The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is geared toward high school students ages 16 to 19 years old. Currently, there are more than 900,000 IB students in over 140 countries.
Once on board, Tapanes learned plans for an IB diploma program at Inderkum were not new and, in fact, date several years back.
“There was a lot of myth and rumor about what had happened,” said Tapanes, the school’s fourth principal in seven years. “Inderkum was built on the promise … it would be an IB school. That promise was never kept.”
Tapanes tracked down retired English teacher Laura Caruso-Kofoid who was hired when Inderkum opened in part because of her experience as an IB coordinator in Raleigh, North Carolina. The plan was to have several small learning communities including the IB diploma program, but it turned out Inderkum was not even eligible to apply until it had graduated a class of students.
“That was the starting point for all of us,” said Tapanes. “What happened originally and where did it go wrong.”
Vue, with a handful of other parents, is spearheading a campaign to raise the $100,000 needed for the IB application, training and testing fees. She formed the non-profit Inderkum IB Program Inc. and plans are under way to hold the first in a series of fundraisers next week.
Because of the Natomas Unified School District’s financial troubles, Tapanes said the community must raise the start-up money for the IB program.
“I think it’s a wonderful thing when a community takes an interest in its public school in that way,” said Caruso-Kofoid. “Natomas is coming of age as a community.”
Tapanes said the goal is to have the IB program in place in time for students who are 7th graders this year. This time frame would allow a year of community outreach and fund raising, a year to promote the program, and a year of teacher training.
“The Inderkum IB Program is going to add yet another dimension to the new and amazing things that are happening at Inderkum High,” said Elena Quintero, PTSA president at the school.
Natomas superintendent Bobbie Plough and school board president Bruce Roberts both echoed Quintero’s sentiments, praising parents for taking the initiative to bring IB to Inderkum. Plough, like Vue, believe more Natomas high school students will remain in the district instead of transferring to schools like Mira Loma once the diploma program is up and running.
Tapanes said he submitted an application of interest last week, officially starting the process to be considered an International Baccalaureate world school and a step toward fulfilling a promise to the community.
“Inderkum is no longer a blank slate, there is still a lot of opportunity to paint the picture of what this high school will become,” said Tapanes. “Inderkum is not, by any means, a finished project.”
For more information on the Inderkum IB Program, click here.


  1. Anonymous says

    read the rules of using the IB name–you are in violation of those rules and the organization could deny your school based on your violations. Go to and look at the copyright laws under Candidate schools


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