Pan-American School: Nurturing Global Citizens of Tomorrow

1. Please mention about the school and its mission/vision and various infrastructural facilities.

Pan-American School is the first IB continuum school offering the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Primary Years Programme (PYP) in Costa Rica. Our school mission, vision, and philosophy and our staff’s commitment are aimed at graduating well-rounded, responsible global citizens who are equipped with the skills and passion to make a positive impact in the world around them. Our educational program is based on core values which are essential in facing today’s challenges.

Since opening in 1971, we are known as one of the most prestigious mid-sized institutions providing fully bilingual English-Spanish education in Costa Rica. As well as being authorized to offer the IB Diploma Programme, we are approved for awarding diplomas by the Ministry of Education and have received international accreditation by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) of the United States. We partner with a range of national and international associations to provide for the widest range of opportunities for our students and staff, including the Association of American Schools of Central America (AASCA), la Asociación de Colegios del Bachillerato Internacional de Costa Rica (ASOBITICO), Association of Private Education Schools (ACEP), and the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS).

Through the use of cutting edge technology and close contact with our environment, as well as direct involvement in service learning projects, our students are able to develop a sensitive and critical awareness of the world.

Our medium size (approximately 600 students) and our low 1:6 teacher to student ratio allows us to provide individualized attention and focus on building confident students with leadership skills. Our graduates leave prepared to successfully pursue higher studies in national and international colleges and universities.

Our campus was designed by a world-renowned architect to harmonize with the natural beauty of our setting and provide an ideal environment for learning. As the school grows, additional buildings of the Master Plan are constructed to accommodate our needs.

2. Kindly mention about the prominent personality of the school and his/her role in the development of the school.

Our beloved “Mister” visited the school and was a Board member until his last breath. He passed on Saturday, May 2nd, 2020. He is remembered as a great friend of students, always ensuring that all the principles that formed the school in 1971 are still the basis for our educational program.

3. Kindly describe about the various courses offered by the school and their salient features.

Pan-American School runs the IB Continuum of education, with students in Early Years and Primary undertaking the Primary Years Programme (PYP); students in Grades 5-10 undertaking the Middle Years Programme (MYP); and students in Grades 11 and 12 taking the Diploma Programme (DP).

IB programmes encourage both personal and academic achievement, challenging students to excel in their studies and in their personal development.

Within the overarching framework of an IB education, we have developed and tailored our curriculum to ensure that it meets a wide variety of needs as well. Our team have aligned our curriculum with both the requirements of the IB programmes, the Ministry of Education of Costa Rica (MEP), and incorporated a range of international standards and benchmarks in different subject areas (such as Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards) to ensure that our offering meets a wide range of interests and needs, and prepares students for success in both Costa Rica and internationally.

4. Please mention what steps are you taking beyond the traditional curriculum to ensure overall development of the students?

Each semester a schedule of classes and clubs is offered after the regular school day according to student and parent interests and requests. These include artistic, gastronomic, sports, and intellectual activities for students at each grade level.

5. What steps does the school take to motivate and develop the students’ interest towards education?

Secondary School students start the day with a Fitness Program, in which students choose the activity that best suits their interests and needs. After a break for changing into the school uniform and having a snack, students are able to start their academic day with more energy and focus.

Our student life is varied and encourages student input in the school’s decision-making processes. We encourage involvement in the Student Council and National Honor Society. Both organizations carry out activities that encourage service and school spirit, and contribute to integration within generations.

Pan-American School has a staff of professional psychologists and learning specialists that support and offer guidance to students for their social, emotional and academic development through specialized services that provide information, intervention, and coordination of community educational resources.

6. How are you providing financial assistance to the students in need?

Pan-American School is supported by the Fundación PASaporte para la Educación, which provides for a number of annual scholarships recognizing student excellence in the areas of academics and sports.

7. What are the career opportunities available to the students after completion of their courses?

Pan-American High School fulfills its mission of forming well-rounded bilingual individuals thanks to our integrated approach that includes the curriculum, student life, and support services. Our goal is for our young people to achieve their potential not only intellectually, but also artistically, athletically, and morally, so that they may lead responsible and fulfilling lives as citizens of an increasingly globalized world. After completing Middle School, students enter High School (grades 9-12). The IB Diploma program is offered in years 11 and 12. Pan-American School is proud to be the only school in Costa Rica in which all students can opt for three certificates: the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma, the U.S. High School Diploma, and the National Bachillerato en Educación Media diploma.

Theory is combined with practice through research skills, state-of-the-art technology, reflection in the sciences, critical reading and thinking, and oral and written communication – essential to success in college and their chosen professions. Field trips, laboratory work, individual and group inquiry are essential components of this process.

8. Other than traditional occupations, what other career field options are available for them?

Each semester a schedule of classes and clubs is offered after the regular school day according to student and parent interests and requests. These include artistic, gastronomic, sports, and intellectual activities for students at each grade level.

9. Please enlighten us about the school’s major awards/achievements, its accomplished/renowned alumni, remarkable collaborations, and major accreditations.

Pan-American School is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), and certified by the Ministry of Education of Costa Rica. It is also authorized by the International Baccalaureate Organization as the first school in Costa Rica to offer the International Baccalaureate continuum of education, made up of the Primary Years Programme, Middle Years Programme and Diploma Programme.

Pan-American School is a member of the Association of American Schools of Central America (AASCA), the Association of Private Education Schools (ACEP) in Costa Rica , the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), and the Asociación de Colegios del Bachillerato Internacional de Costa Rica (ASOBITICO).

As a NEASC accredited school, Pan-American School demonstrates its ongoing achievement of, and commitment to, the highest international standards of professional performance and school governance. With a long-standing and committed governing body, Pan-American School has been able to engage in long-term strategic planning thanks to its foundation of stability and continuity over time.

Graduates of Pan-American School have been accepted in more than 60 distinguished colleges and universities around the world including Costa Rica, USA, Australia, Mexico, Asia, Europe, etc.

10. Kindly elaborate about the future plans of the school in the same.

Since 2015, our strategic plan at Pan-American School has been guided by four pillars which provide the basis for current and future plans. These four pillars are:

●Pillar 1: Curriculum and Instruction

●Pillar 2: Values, Ecology, and Service

●Pillar 3: Technology, Innovation, and Investigation.

●Pillar 4: Sports, Health and Wellness