Whether you’re new to Japan or just looking to learn more about high school education, this guide will tell you everything you need to know including the history of high school education, the philosophy behind high school education, high school student and teacher school programs and more.
Secondary Education in Japan
High school attendance is optional in Japan. Admission to high school is based on exams, and competition for the best schools is fierce. Students attending junior high and high school combined avoid the pressure of high school entrance exams, but there are only a few public Tokyo school that stick together.
The high school curriculum covers several compulsory subjects, including geography, history, citizenship, Japanese, mathematics, science, physical education, health, arts, foreign languages, household, and information. The secondary school curriculum also includes extracurricular activities and mixed learning, and students in vocational programs take courses in their field of study while spending less time on core subjects. Professional programs are offered in subjects such as agriculture, industrial arts and business.
History of Higher Education in Japan
Secondary school enrollment rates more than doubled during the economic boom, from 42.5% in 1950 to 90.8% in 1974. At the same time, the enrollment rate for 18-year-olds in Japan has almost doubled from 10. % in 1960 quadrupled. 37 percent in 1975. Many of the farm’s children became employees and went to college, helping to form a new middle class in the 1970s.
The 1999 high school curriculum 2003-2012 was created to increase diversity, individuality, internationalization, deregulation, and information technology. The training also promotes volunteerism, moral education and work experience. This course has reduced the number of hours per class in line with the five-day school week and created more compulsory electives. Most high schools have modules of 30 hours per week for 35 weeks per year, and one hour is 50 minutes.
High school in Japan
High school students are typically classified into three different types of high school, including academic high schools, vocational schools, and new high schools. High school students tend to participate in extracurricular activities and work part time after school. Nearly two-thirds of high school graduates are willing to enroll in technical colleges, universities, and technical colleges. Getting admission to universities like colleges and universities is not that difficult in Japan. Only 20 to 30 percent of top high school students study hard to get into the best colleges and universities, while more than half of high school students only study for an hour or less a day.
Most of Japan’s 5,500 secondary schools are public schools, while about 24 percent of high schools are private schools. There are 15 national high schools affiliated with national universities and 104 new six-year public secondary schools. About 51 percent of private schools and 4 percent of public schools are single-sex institutions. In addition to the regular daytime high school, there is also a part-time high school and an evening high school. There are special secondary schools for children who are blind, deaf, orthopedic, chronic illnesses and other disabilities.
High school students and teachers in Japan
About 98 percent of high school graduates aged 15 years continue to attend grammar schools or private specialized institutions. A high school diploma is considered the minimum requirement for most major occupations in Japan. About a quarter of all students attend private secondary schools, some of which are elite academic high schools. Most high school students attend daily school and about three-quarters of all students are enrolled in academic courses. Other students have enrolled in part-time high schools or high schools that offer part-time courses.
Curriculum in high schools in Japan
Middle schools in Japan have a very different high school curriculum. Depending on the type of university, the curriculum can cover much general education or very specialized subjects. The course consists of 74 units, 31 of which are mandatory and 25 are optional.
Compulsory subjects for general education are World History, Japanese Language Units, Japanese History or Geography, Modern Society, Ethics, Political Science, Economics, Mathematics, Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Physical Education, Public Health, Music, Arts, Crafts, Calligraphy, Oral Communication, English, Home Economics, Everyday Technology, and Information Science.
All SMAs are also required to teach three to four integrated study units and all SMAs have one-hour classes. Each school can also create school-specific subjects based on student needs, and academic high schools offer advanced-level courses. Vocational high schools offer basic academic courses and specialized vocational courses. International schools follow a variety of curricula, allowing parents to choose the one that best suits their child’s future plans.