Home » Japan » Japan – Education and Schools

Japan – Education and Schools

Japan has one of the most highly regarded education systems in the world, with a focus on discipline, hard work, and academic achievement. In this article, we will explore the quality of education in Japan, compulsory education ages, types of schools, syllabus and qualifications, school hours and holidays, enrollment process, international schools, and higher education options.

Quality of Education in Japan

The quality of education in Japan is considered to be very high, with Japanese students consistently ranking among the top performers in international assessments such as the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). The Japanese education system is known for its rigor and emphasis on academic achievement, with a strong focus on discipline and hard work.

Compulsory Education Ages in Japan

Education in Japan is compulsory for children between the ages of six and 15 years old. This means that every child residing in Japan must receive an education from primary school to lower secondary school, regardless of their nationality or background.

Types of Schools in Japan

There are several types of schools in Japan, catering to different age groups and needs of students. The types of schools in Japan are as follows:

Primary Education

Primary education in Japan is compulsory for children between the ages of six and 12 years old. The primary school curriculum focuses on developing students’ literacy, numeracy, and social skills.


Get Our Best Articles Every Month!

Get our free moving abroad email course AND our top stories in your inbox every month


Unsubscribe any time. We respect your privacy - read our privacy policy.


Lower Secondary Education

Lower secondary education in Japan is available for students between the ages of 12 and 15 years old. The lower secondary school curriculum builds on the knowledge and skills learned in primary school, preparing students for upper secondary education.

Upper Secondary Education

Upper secondary education in Japan is available for students between the ages of 15 and 18 years old. The upper secondary school curriculum is divided into two categories: academic programs and vocational programs. Academic programs prepare students for higher education, while vocational programs provide students with practical skills and training for a specific career.

Syllabus and Qualifications

The curriculum in Japan is based on the Course of Study, which is divided into several subject areas, including Japanese language, social studies, mathematics, science, music, art, physical education, and moral education.

Students who complete upper secondary education can earn a variety of qualifications, including the High School Equivalency Diploma, the National Vocational Qualification, and the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.

School Hours and Holidays

School hours in Japan typically run from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, with some schools having extended hours until 6:00 pm. Students in upper secondary school may have longer hours, depending on their program of study.

The academic year in Japan starts in April and ends in March of the following year, with a summer break from late July to early September and a winter break from late December to early January.

Enrollment Process

To enroll in a school in Japan, students need to provide a range of documentation, including proof of identity, proof of residency, and academic records. Parents or guardians can apply for enrollment at the local education authority or directly at the school.

Competition for enrollment can be significant in Japan, particularly for prestigious schools or schools located in urban areas. The enrollment process for some of these schools may require additional steps, such as entrance exams or interviews.

International Schools

Japan has several international schools that cater to the needs of expatriate families and non-local students. These schools offer a range of curricula, including the International Baccalaureate (IB) program, the British curriculum, and the American curriculum.

Some of the most popular international schools in Japan include the Tokyo International School, the American School in Japan, and the British School in Tokyo.

Higher Education Options

Japan has a range of higher education options, including universities, colleges, and vocational training institutions. The higher education system in Japan is highly regarded, with many universities ranking among the top in the world.

There are two main types of higher education institutions in Japan: national universities and private universities. National universities are funded by the Japanese government and offer a range of undergraduate and graduate programs. Private universities are privately funded and offer a range of programs in various fields, including business, engineering, and the arts.

Some of the most prestigious universities in Japan include the University of Tokyo, Kyoto University, and Waseda University.

In addition to universities, Japan also has several colleges and vocational training institutions, such as the National Institute of Technology and the Japan Electronics College.

In conclusion, education in Japan is highly regarded and emphasizes academic achievement, discipline, and hard work. Compulsory education in Japan is available for children between the ages of six and 15 years old, with several types of schools available, including primary education, lower secondary education, and upper secondary education.

The curriculum in Japan is based on the Course of Study and prepares students for a range of qualifications, including the High School Equivalency Diploma and the National Vocational Qualification. School hours in Japan are typically from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, with a summer break and winter break.

Enrolling in a school in Japan requires providing proof of identity, residency, and academic records, and competition for enrollment can be significant for prestigious schools or schools located in urban areas.

Japan also has several international schools that cater to non-local students, as well as a range of higher education options, including universities, colleges, and vocational training institutions.


Latest Videos

In this short video, we dive into the significant health care updates and changes happening globally in 2024. From Germany's insurance cost adjustments to Cyprus's renewed COVID-19 precautions, we cover the essential news you need to know.  Germany's Health Insurance Update:  Starting in 2024, residents in Germany will see a slight increase in their health insurance costs, with a 0.1% rise to a maximum of 1.7%. This adjustment aims to expand coverage for medical care not currently included in statutory health insurance, such as select dental treatments, IVF, and early cancer screenings.  COVID-19 Measures Reintroduced in Cyprus:  With over 3000 new COVID-19 cases, Cyprus is stepping up its game by reintroducing health measures. Requirements now include proof of a negative COVID-19 test for entry into various facilities, emphasizing the importance of vaccination, especially for the elderly, to combat the evolving virus strains.  Free Health Trials in Trieste, Italy:  Trieste launches an initiative for free health screenings, including echocardiograms and blood tests, focusing on preventive care against non-communicable diseases. This move underscores the city's commitment to improving public health through early detection and prevention.  Spain's New Health Advice App:  Madrid introduces a groundbreaking app offering reliable health advice to counteract the widespread misinformation online. This app, part of the 'Madrid Te Cuida' initiative, will guide users to accurate information, from diet tips to medical queries, ensuring the advice is vetted by health professionals.  Expat Satisfaction with Healthcare in Mexico:  A study reveals that expat retirees in Mexico are largely content with the healthcare quality and costs, with many citing significant savings compared to the United States without compromising on care quality. This insight sheds light on the growing trend of healthcare tourism and relocation for medical reasons.  Stay tuned as we unpack these updates, providing you with the insights and implications of these healthcare changes. Whether it's the impact on your wallet or the quality of care you can expect, we've got you covered in this comprehensive overview of health care in 2024. Don't forget to like, share, and subscribe for more health news around the globe!

In this short video, we dive into the significant health care updates and changes happening globally in 2024. From Germany's insurance cost adjustments to Cyprus's renewed COVID-19 precautions, we cover the essential news you need to know.

Germany's Health Insurance Update:

Starting in 2024, residents in Germany will see a slight increase in their health insurance costs, with a 0.1% rise to a maximum of 1.7%. This adjustment aims to expand coverage for medical care not currently included in statutory health insurance, such as select dental treatments, IVF, and early cancer screenings.

COVID-19 Measures Reintroduced in Cyprus:

With over 3000 new COVID-19 cases, Cyprus is stepping up its game by reintroducing health measures. Requirements now include proof of a negative COVID-19 test for entry into various facilities, emphasizing the importance of vaccination, especially for the elderly, to combat the evolving virus strains.

Free Health Trials in Trieste, Italy:

Trieste launches an initiative for free health screenings, including echocardiograms and blood tests, focusing on preventive care against non-communicable diseases. This move underscores the city's commitment to improving public health through early detection and prevention.

Spain's New Health Advice App:

Madrid introduces a groundbreaking app offering reliable health advice to counteract the widespread misinformation online. This app, part of the 'Madrid Te Cuida' initiative, will guide users to accurate information, from diet tips to medical queries, ensuring the advice is vetted by health professionals.

Expat Satisfaction with Healthcare in Mexico:

A study reveals that expat retirees in Mexico are largely content with the healthcare quality and costs, with many citing significant savings compared to the United States without compromising on care quality. This insight sheds light on the growing trend of healthcare tourism and relocation for medical reasons.

Stay tuned as we unpack these updates, providing you with the insights and implications of these healthcare changes. Whether it's the impact on your wallet or the quality of care you can expect, we've got you covered in this comprehensive overview of health care in 2024. Don't forget to like, share, and subscribe for more health news around the globe!

YouTube Video UCB21b-C4O2aXm7H18_GsXMQ_nC_Fs6gU22U

Expat Focus International Healthcare Update January 2024

Expat Focus 31 January 2024 10:36 am

This error message is only visible to WordPress admins

Important: No API Key Entered.

Many features are not available without adding an API Key. Please go to the YouTube Feed settings page to add an API key after following these instructions.