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Applications at new suburban Tokyo school with int'l focus exceed places by over 30 times

Principal Yuko Ichimura holds an image of how the elementary school attached to Tachikawa Kokusai Secondary Education School in Tachikawa, Tokyo, will look upon completion, on July 15, 2021. (Mainichi/Richi Tanaka)

TOKYO -- Applications for general admission to a new elementary school that will be part of Japan's first integrated public elementary, junior high, and high school, with a focus on international learning, have exceeded the number of available places by over 30 times, the Tokyo Metropolitan Board of Education announced.

    According to a Nov. 1 announcement from the board, 916 boys and 881 girls applied to enter the metropolitan elementary school, which will be integrated with Tachikawa Kokusai Secondary Education School in the Tokyo suburban city of Tachikawa. The elementary school is set to open in April 2022 with a general admission quota of 29 boys and 29 girls each.

    The final application rate was 31.59 times for boys and 30.38 times for girls, for an average of 30.98 overall. The number of applicants will be narrowed down to 200 for each gender through a lottery, followed by an aptitude test and a further lottery to determine the successful applicants.

    The school, which aims to educate students to play an active role in international society, will additionally accept 12 students who have returned from abroad or are foreign residents in Tokyo, for a total of 70 including the 58 general admission applicants.

    The elementary school values "inquiry-based learning," in which students think and research for themselves, and offers English classes from the first grade, as well as opportunities to experience Chinese, Korean and other languages.

    The school's educational program, which continues for 12 years from elementary, junior high, through high school, also reportedly includes overseas travel opportunities.

    (Japanese original by Asako Takeuchi, Tokyo City News Department)

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