A career counseling seminar was held on Sunday, September 23, 2012 in Iga City, Mie.
Approximately 250 children, parents, guardians, teachers and other individuals involved in education gathered in Iga City for this seminar, which provided information on the Japanese education system and senior high school admissions procedures in Mie Prefecture.
This was the 11th seminar of its kind held in Iga City, and never before has a seminar like this covered so much ground.
Participants were divided based on the language that they were most comfortable with. Among the presenter’s was Sakata Harue, who led the seminar for Portuguese speaking participants and works as a Portuguese interpreter at Iga City Hall. All presenters emphasized that regardless of a student’s chosen field, studying hard was of the utmost importance. They also noted that approximately 99% of all junior high school students in Japan continue on to senior high school.
In order to continue on to high school, students must take an entrance exam known as “nyuugakusha senyuu.” This test is administered during February and March each year.
Schools in Mie Prefecture offer one or more of the following three courses of study:
it is important to get as much information as possible by talking to the student’s homeroom teacher, consulting with the school guidance counselor, and attending open houses at senior high schools.
Saving for a student’s educational costs beforehand is also very important. According to a speaker at the seminar, many Japanese families begin saving for a child’s high school and college education by depositing a determined amount of money in a savings account each month starting from the time the child is born. When tuition, transportation expenses, and money for school supplies are taken into account, a high school education costs approximately 350,000 yen per year per student.
There is a student loan system that was established to assist families who have trouble paying the costs of education. The Mie Prefecture Board of Education has a system that lends money, without interest, to families that demonstrate financial need. These loans must be repaid upon the student’s graduation. For more information about student loans, please contact a teacher at your child’s school.
Eligibility for some student loans may depend on a student’s academic performance. The better a student’s academic performance, the more student loan options will be available to him or her. Studying hard is therefore the path to a student’s ideal future, a point that was stressed heavily during this seminar.
Participants were also able to hear from representatives of senior high schools in Iga City, who provided a great deal of information about their schools and curriculum.
Afterwards, participants heard from 4 non-Japanese students: 3 are current senior high school students and 1 is a current university student. The students told participants that they adjusted well to senior high school life and have not experienced any serious problems. However, they also mentioned that senior high school is far more academically challenging. Furthermore, the students noted a lack of interpretation staff at their schools and mentioned that it would have been helpful to have an interpreter to assist with explaining notices from school to parents and solving more complicated issues at school.
It is important for parents and guardians to attend seminars like this in order to help their children determine the school that is right for them. There is a variety of schools from which to choose, so be sure the choose the one that best aligns with your child’s goals and aspirations.