IB Teacher. IB Parent. IB Coordinator!
Posted on September 19, 2017 by Scot Allen
"The big pay off with the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme is not seen in one year, but 5 years or 10 years down the road when you get chosen for a program or degree or a job," said new IB coordinator Kymbal Roley. "Our students have that IB edge."
With more than 17 years of teaching experience, Roley should know. Though she has just begun leading the Mid-Pacific IB program, she has more than five years' experience as an IB physics teacher. Perhaps more telling, she has observed as all three of her children were involved in the IB at Mid-Pacific.
"Kym Roley is the ideal person to lead our IB program -- the first of its kind in Hawai'i -- to the next phase of its growth in our school," said High School Principal Tom McManus. "She has been an IB teacher as well as an IB parent, and she cares deeply about what kids need to be their best. Her high level of motivation and attention to detail is well suited to this prestigious program, and students, parents, and her colleagues are all inspired by her example. We are lucky to have Kym at Mid-Pacific."
"I think I offer a unique perspective because I have had my own children go through the IB program," she said. "Rachel 2011 and Renee 2013 were both full diploma students. They wanted to challenge themselves to do something more, and I think it made a difference in Rachel getting selected to Harvey Mudd College and Renee to the University of Oregon. Rachel is now doing master's work at MIT -- but it all started here!"
Her son Ben is a 2016 grad. He chose the IB film and history certificate programs to tailor the IB experience to meet his goals.
"That's the unique thing we have here at Mid-Pacific," she said. "Students can challenge themselves to the full IB or they can specialize and perhaps become a game-changer in their area of interest. You don't have to be a diploma student to experience the best of what the IB offers. Students can customize their learning experience. We are an IB World School, not just a school with an IB program."
Roley is a Graduate of the United States Air Force Academy; she earned a Master's degree in engineering from the University of Dayton.
Passion and perseverance define Roley's personal and professional life. "I am not faster, smarter or more athletic, but I have that tenacity and that grit," she said. "I will take a task and break it down into bite-size pieces and just do it."
She started teaching at Mid-Pacific in 2012; soon after, she was diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer. During the first quarter she had surgery and chemo every Friday... and taught Monday through Thursday for the entire first semester. "Mid-Pacific was so supportive to me," she said. "I had a recurrence in 2014, but my health is good now. I have lots of energy and I am ready to tackle this project!"
2017-2018 is a program review year for the Mid-Pacific IB program. Roley and the 27 IB teachers at Mid-Pacific will take an in-depth look at their progress -- what they do well and what needs improvement -- to reflect on the progress they have made since 2013.
"My goal for the IB is to develop teacher, student and parent communities to foster involvement and awareness. In the IB, you are around highly motivated people who are also thinking, 'I want to be doing big things in five or ten years.'"
"If the teachers know you care and the students know you care, that's the bottom line," she said. "The details will fall into place. This school is in my heart. I love this school. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing!"