Forum Academy has been authorized as an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School and will offer the IB Diploma Program starting March 2, 2015.

This prestigious designation makes Forum Academy the only IB school in Panama to operate outside of Panama City.

Forum Academy is a tuition-free boarding school for students from the remote areas of Coclé. The Academy’s mission is to ensure that these rural students have access to the education they need to succeed. Computer technology, sciences, and English are at the center of the school’s rigorous curriculum, designed to prepare its students for professional careers in Panama’s growing economy. “The establishment of Forum Academy and our subsequent IB authorization serve as symbols to all of Panama that children from rural regions can have access to a world-class education,” says John Keffer, President of Forum Foundation and Founder of Forum Academy.

“This is a huge step forward for the children of Coclé’s mountainous region. They are now able to compete side by side with students of very different social and cultural backgrounds and will be agents of dramatic change in their own communities,” comments Sol Perez Tirado, Director of Forum Academy. “It is also a remarkable step forward for our teachers, who have completed an intensive professional development program to learn the student centered and concept-based IB approach, which translates into the best possible guidance to our students.”

The IB is recognized across the world for its innovative approach to education. “It is important to place an equal focus on academics and other, transferable skills, in order to best prepare students for success beyond high school,” notes Drew Deutsch, Director of IB America. “That Forum Academy has successfully completed the authorization process and can now start offering the IB marks an exciting time for the school and more importantly, for the students who will benefit from an IB education.”

Forum Academy was established in 2014 by Forum Foundation, a US-based non-profit organization whose charitable efforts have focused on education in Coclé Province since 2008. “A well-educated and knowledgeable workforce will be critical to developing and maintaining a strong and growing economy in Panama,” states Mr. Keffer. He concludes, “We are very pleased to promote education in one of the more remote regions of Panama. We invite others to join us in sponsoring these programs.”

To learn more about the inspiring story behind Forum Academy, please visit

For futher information about the International Baccalaureate, please visit


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