Top 10 Japanese High Schools For International Students

Japanese high schools for international students are Tokyo Metropolitan Kokusai High School and Tokyo Metropolitan Asuka High School. These schools accept international students and provide unique educational opportunities for students worldwide.

Japanese high schools provide experience in their rich culture and academic excellence for international students. Their schools cater specifically to the needs of international students, offering a supportive and inclusive environment for their educational journey. High schools also pave the way for a well-rounded education that prepares students for future academic and professional success.

How Do Japanese High Schools Work

Japanese high schools follow a structured educational system focusing on academic achievement, discipline, and holistic development. The school year begins in April and ends in March, divided into terms. The curriculum, set by the Ministry of Education, covers many subjects, emphasizing core academic areas.
Students study in large class sizes and spend most of their time in homerooms, with teachers rotating for different subjects. Extracurricular activities, such as sports and cultural clubs, are encouraged to promote personal growth and teamwork. Japanese high schools strongly emphasize preparing students for university entrance exams, which are highly competitive.
Students undergo intensive preparations in their final year, and exam results greatly influence their university options. The school culture emphasizes discipline, respect, and community. Students must adhere to strict rules and regulations, including behavior, uniform, and punctuality. Support services, including counseling and tutoring, assist students in their academic and personal development.

10 Japanese High Schools That Accept International Students

Many high schools in Japan offer a supportive and multicultural environment. They also give students a unique opportunity to study in Japan and broaden their horizons.

Here are 10 Japanese high schools that accept international students:

1. Tokyo Metropolitan Kokusai High School

List Of Japanese High Schools That Accept International StudentsTokyo Metropolitan Kokusai High School (TKHS) in Shinagawa, Tokyo, is the top-ranked public school in Japan for international students. Known for its strong academic program, it focuses on global education. TKHS offers many language courses, including Japanese, English, French, German, Spanish, and Chinese. It also has a solid extracurricular program, with clubs and activities for students of all interests. The tuition for TKHS is ¥730,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 20:1. The acceptance rate for TKHS is 3%. The school has a total of 500 students, of which 100 are international students.

2. KAIS International School

KAIS International School in Minato, Tokyo, is a private international school offering a bilingual Japanese and English program. KAIS is known for its small class sizes and its focus on academic excellence. The school also has a robust extracurricular program, with clubs and activities for students of all interests. The tuition for KAIS is ¥2,500,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 10:1. The acceptance rate for KAIS is 10%. The school has 500 students, of which 300 are international students.

3. Kaisei Academy in Minato

Tokyo is a private high school known for its rigorous academic program and a strong focus on the sciences. Kaisei Academy has a strong, close-knit community and supportive faculty. The tuition for Kaisei Academy is ¥1,800,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 15:1. The acceptance rate for Kaisei Academy is 5%. The school has 1,000 students, of which 50 are international students.

4. Horizon Japan International

Horizon Japan International School in Setagaya, Tokyo, is a private international school that offers several programs, including the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme. Horizon Japan is known for its focus on global citizenship and its commitment to diversity. The tuition for Horizon Japan is ¥2,200,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 12:1. The acceptance rate for Horizon Japan is 20%. The school has 500 students, of which 200 are international students.

5. Kanto International Senior High School

Kanto International Senior High SchoolKanto International Senior High School in Yokohama, Kanagawa, is a private international school. It offers various programs, including the IB Diploma Programme and the American High School Diploma. Kanto International is known for its strong academic program and its focus on college preparation. The tuition for Kanto International is ¥2,000,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 10:1. The acceptance rate for Kanto International is 15%. The school has a total of 500 students, of which 200 are international students.

6. Tokyo Gakuen High School

Tokyo Gakuen High School in Chiyoda, Tokyo, is a private high school with a strong focus on arts. Tokyo Gakuen is also known for its close-knit community and its supportive faculty. The tuition for Tokyo Gakuen is ¥1,800,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 15:1. The acceptance rate for Tokyo Gakuen is 5%. With a total of 1,000 students, of which 50 are international students.

7. Kokusai Senior High School – Tokyo

Kokusai Senior High School is in Shinjuku, Tokyo. It is a public high school focusing on international education. Kokusai Senior High School offers many language courses, including Japanese, English, French, German, Spanish, and Chinese. It also has a robust extracurricular program for students of all interests. The tuition for Kokusai Senior High School is ¥730,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 20:1. The acceptance rate for Kokusai Senior High School is 3%. The school has a total of 50 international students.

8. Tokyo Metropolitan Asuka High School

Tokyo Metropolitan Asuka High School in Ota, Tokyo, is a public high school with a solid academic program and a focus on sciences. The tuition for Tokyo Metropolitan Asuka High School is ¥730,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 20:1. The acceptance rate for Tokyo Metropolitan Asuka High School is 3%. The school has a total of 500 students, of which 100 are international students.

9. Fuchu Nishi High School

Fuchu Nishi High School in Fuchu, Tokyo, is a public high school. It offers many outside activities, including sports, clubs, and cultural activities. The tuition for Fuchu Nishi High School is ¥730,000 per year. The student-to-teacher ratio is 20:1. Their acceptance rate is 3%. The school has a total of 500 students, which includes 50 international students.

10. Otsuma Gakuen Junior and Senior High School

Otsuma Gakuen Junior and Senior High SchoolOtsuma Gakuen Junior and Senior High School in Mitaka, Tokyo, is a private high school known for its strong academic program and focus on the arts. The school offers many extracurricular activities, including sports, clubs, and cultural activities. Their tuition is ¥2,000,000 per year. The acceptance rate for Otsuma Gakuen Junior and Senior High School is 15%. The student-to-teacher ratio is 10:1. The school has a total of 1,000 students, of which 100 are international students.

Japanese High School Uniform

In Japan, students attending public and private high schools wear uniforms, fostering a sense of unity and discipline among the student body.

Japanese high school boys’ uniform:
The boys’ uniform is a dark-colored, single-breasted blazer with a school emblem on the pocket. Under the blazer, they wear a white dress shirt, necktie, and dark-colored trousers. They complete it with black shoes and socks.
Japanese high school girls’ uniform:
Girls’ uniforms feature a sailor-style design. They wear a dark-colored pleated dark-colored skirt with a white blouse with a sailor collar and a bow or ribbon tie. Some schools have variations in skirt length or collar design. Girls also wear knee-high socks with polished dark shoes.
Japanese high school summer uniform:
Many schools have a summer uniform option for both boys and girls. Boys wear short-sleeved dress shirts and tailored shorts paired with long socks and dress shoes. Girls WEAR a short-sleeved blouse or a lightweight sailor-style top with a skirt or culottes.
Japanese high school outerwear:
Schools provide additional outerwear for colder seasons or inclement weather. A standard outerwear option for boys and girls is a dark blazer or a cardigan with the school emblem. Students also wear a matching sweaters over their shirts or blouse.
Japanese high school accessories and grooming:
Schools have guidelines regarding hairstyles, accessories, and grooming. Hair must be neat with natural colors. Girls wear simple hair accessories like hairbands or ribbons in school-approved colors. Boys generally have short, tidy haircuts. Also, makeup is usually minimal and natural-looking for girls.

Japanese Schooling System

The Japanese educational system comprises primarily 6-year elementary schools, 3-year junior high schools, and three-year high schools, followed by two-or three-year junior colleges or 4-year colleges. Compulsory education lasts nine years, from elementary school through junior high school. School exchanges occur primarily in junior high and high schools during Japan Educational Travel. A system called “Special Needs Education” helps physically or mentally challenged pupils build self-reliance and thereby improve their social involvement.

Japan High School Application Requirements

Application requirements in Japanese high schools differ between public and private specialized programs or international tracks. Students must review the application guidelines for each school and adhere to instructions.

Here are 7 standard application requirements for Japanese high schools:

1. Application form

Students have to fill out an application form provided by the school. The state may include personal information, educational background, extracurricular activities, and other relevant details.

2. Entrance exams

Many high schools in Japan have entrance exams as part of their admissions process. These exams usually cover subjects like mathematics, Japanese language, English, and sometimes science or social studies. The format and content of the exams can vary between schools.

3. Academic records

Applicants must submit academic records, such as transcripts or report cards from their previous school(s). These records help evaluate the student’s academic performance and suitability for the school.

4. Recommendation letters

Some high schools may request recommendation letters from teachers or school officials who can provide insight into the student’s character, academic abilities, and potential.

5. Interviews

Schools may interview applicants to assess their motivation, interests, goals, and suitability for the school community.

6. Additional documents

Schools require additional documents like a copy of the student’s birth certificate, health certificate, proof of address, or passport-sized photographs. These requirements can vary, so it’s essential to check the specific school’s application guidelines.

7. Essay or statement of purpose

Some high schools require applicants to submit an essay or statement of purpose. This essay allows students to express their motivations, aspirations, and why they are interested in attending the particular school.

What Time Do Schools Start In Japan?

A typical Japanese high school student’s school day might begin at 6:30 a.m. or 7:00 a.m. Japanese high school students do not drive to school in the same way that their American counterparts do.

Many children must walk or bike to school if their house is far away. Because the school day begins at 8:30 a.m. for these students, they can leave the house at 6:30 a.m. They must ride the bus or have their parents drive them to school.

However, although some students sleep or study during their long trips, public transit allows them to mingle with their friends. School standards frequently require kids to board buses and trains while leaving seats free for other passengers as a courtesy.

How Long Is Summer Break In Japan?

Japanese schools are divided into 3 semesters that are separated by holidays. Summer break at most schools lasts 40 days, from July 20 to August 31; winter and spring vacations last 10 days, from December 26 to approximately January 6 and March 25 to around April 5, respectively. The new academic year begins in April, after spring break.

Japanese Schools Schedule

In Japan, public schools are open 5 days a week, from Monday to Friday. Saturday sessions are also available at several schools. Each day in junior high and high school, there are 6 class periods, each lasting 50 minutes. Students clean the classrooms in shifts after school and then begin their club activities.

There are several clubs available, including cultural and sporting clubs. The academic year generally begins in April and concludes in March of the following year. Most institutions use a 3-semester system, with the first semester running from April to August, the second from September to December, and the third from January to March.

There is also a summer break (from the end of July to the end of August), a winter break (from the end of December to the beginning of January), and a spring break (from the end of March to the beginning of April) (from the end of March to the beginning of April).

Japanese Grading System

In Japan, academic evaluation is quite systematic. Constant attention is drawn to the highs and lows of the candidates. The marking system is simple enough for parents to understand. When a student advances his education, he is introduced to a more complex marking system.

The performance-based grading system in Japanese education differs from school to school and university to university. The most typical grading style is percentages or grades such as A, B, C, D, and E. Each grade represents a specific percentage range.

In Japan, education consists of the following components:

  • Elementary Level Education
  • Secondary Education
  • High School Education

All children in Japan attends elementary school for years and secondary school for 3 years. The exam pattern for elementary, secondary, and high school is nearly identical. However, until the intermediate level of schooling, i.e., secondary school, all pupils pass the test. In the same class, no pupils are failed or are kept behind. Regardless of how they fared in the examination or their grades, all pupils gets promotion for the following class.

All academic activities and topics are taught to elementary and secondary school students, and all students must take an exam. Even if a student fails, they advance to the next class regardless of performance on the test or exam.

A table of grading system in standard Japanese high schools:

GradeScaleGrade DescriptionUS GradeNotes
 S 90.00 – 100.00 Exemplary A Rarely given
 A 90.00 – 100.00 Exemplary A
 A 80.00 – 89.99 Very Good A
 B 70.00 – 79.99 Good B
 C 60.00 – 69.99 Satisfactory C
 F 0.00 – 59.99 Fail F
 P Pass P

The grading system for college or university students is based on 5 scales: A, S, B, C, and F. If students fail any subject at the degree or postgraduate level, they must retake the test the following semester.

Types of Japanese High Schools

In Japan, several types of high schools cater to different educational goals, interests, and career paths. However, high school choice depends on students’ goals, interests, and career aspirations.

Here are 7 common types of Japanese high schools:

1. Public High School (Kōtōgakkō)

Public high schools are government-funded institutions that provide general education to students. These schools follow the national curriculum of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MEXT). Public high schools often have a wide range of clubs and extracurricular activities.

2. Private High Schools (Shiritsu Kōtōgakkō)

Private high schools operate independently and get funds from private organizations, religious institutions, or individuals. They offer specialized curricula or focus on subjects such as science, arts, or foreign languages. Private high schools have smaller class sizes and additional resources than public schools.

3. Academic High Schools (Gakushū Kōtōgakkō)

Academic high schools strongly emphasize academic excellence and prepare students for university entrance exams. These schools provide rigorous instruction in core subjects such as mathematics, science, social studies, and language arts. Students in academic high schools often study intensively to gain admission to prestigious universities.

4. Vocational High Schools (Senmon Kōtōgakkō)

Vocational high schools focus on providing specialized technical and practical education to prepare students for specific careers or industries. These schools offer vocational programs in automotive technology, culinary arts, nursing, information technology, and more. Vocational high schools often partner with local industries and provide hands-on training and internships.

5. International High Schools

International high schools in Japan cater to both Japanese and international students. These schools often provide a bilingual or English-based curriculum to foster global understanding and cultural exchange. International high schools follow international education systems, like the International Baccalaureate (IB) or Advanced Placement (AP) programs.

6. Specialized High Schools

Specialized high schools focus on specific areas of study, such as arts, music, sports, or science. These schools provide intensive training and instruction in their specialized field, allowing students to pursue their passions and talents. Technical high schools often require students to pass entrance exams or auditions to gain admission.

7. Open High Schools (Hirogaku Kōtōgakkō)

Open high schools offer flexible learning options for students with difficulty attending traditional schools. This includes working students or those with health issues. These schools provide distance learning and allow students to study independently through online platforms or correspondence courses.

Is High School in Japan Free?

Yes, public high school in Japan is free for all students, including international students. However, there are additional fees for things like textbooks, uniforms, and extracurricular activities.

How Much Does High School in Japan Cost?

Public high school in Japan is free, but private high school can cost up to $18,000 per year. 18,000 US dollars is equal to ¥2,605,104.

Conclusion: Japanese high schools for international students 

Japanese high schools provide several educational possibilities for international students. Japanese high schools, whether public or private, academic or vocational programs or special schools, offer a one-of-a-kind experience. These experiences stimulate personal growth, intercultural interchange, and academic performance. International students can immerse themselves in the Japanese language and culture. They will also learn vital skills and knowledge to prepare them for future academic and career ambitions.