Anasazi Named International Baccalaureate Program Candidate School

Anasazi Elementary School, part of the Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD), has been named as a Candidate School for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP). The IB aims to create global student citizens who learn to think critically and creatively about the world and its issues, and how they relate to them.

In adopting IB’s rigorous, interdisciplinary framework of study, Anasazi, located at 12121 North 124th Street, Scottsdale, joins nearby Mountainside Middle School, a Candidate School for the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) and neighboring Desert Mountain High School, which has been offering the IB Diploma Programme of study since 1999.

Anasazi principal Jennifer Waldron says she is looking forward to the journey of becoming an IB World School.

“We are on a mission to provide our students with a world-class education with the same elite curriculum you would find at a private school, but in a public education setting that is accessible to all. We embrace the role Anasazi will play in completing SUSD’s goal of offering a pre-kindergarten through 12th grade IB track of study, empowering students to meet the demands of the future that awaits them.”

In becoming an IB school, Anasazi teachers will become students themselves, and receive the intense, collaborative, professional development necessary to deliver the PYP’s inquiry-led, project-based instruction. The training gets underway later this month when IB PYP coordinators from other states fly in to work with Anasazi staff for three days. Waldron says the training is ongoing and will continue throughout the school year on early release days and in staff meetings.

One of the immediate changes ahead for Anasazi students is that they will start learning Spanish. Studying a foreign language is an IB requirement at all grade levels.

The IB certification process can take up to four years, but Waldron hopes to accomplish it in three. If successful, Anasazi would become Arizona’s sixth IB PYP school.

“It doesn’t surprise me that Principal Waldron is pursuing the IB’s rigorous requirements with determination,” says SUSD superintendent Dr. John Kriekard. “She is totally committed to raising the bar for our students, and we are excited about what this opportunity offers Anasazi. These young leaders will have a clear path in front of them, from pre-kindergarten through high school, to pursue a global education, right here in Scottsdale, Arizona.”

While Anasazi, Mountainside and Desert Mountain are part of SUSD’s Desert Mountain Learning Community in Northeast Scottsdale, under Arizona’s open enrollment education options, any parent from within and outside SUSD can enroll their child to access this unique learning track.

To learn more about Anasazi Elementary school, visit and to enroll, visit

Leave a Reply