History of the School

In May 2006 an application was made to establish an International School in Makuhari within a 'Special Zone' - an 'Article One' status school. The only International School in Japan to enjoy this status at this time.

Part of the vision when planning the school, was to improve the living environment for foreigners residing in Chiba, as well as to establish a school for Japanese Returnee children to attend. It was also to attract more foreign investment into Chiba by providing an International School for foreign workers' children to attend.

Having 'Article One' status allows the school to use its own unique curriculum. It also makes it easier for Japanese children to move on to Japanese Junior High Schools at the end of Grade 6. (As opposed to children leaving other International Schools within Japan. Japanese Junior High schools must allow children from MIS to take entrance examinations to join their schools.)

Other International Schools within Japan without  'Article One' status have to follow the same regulations as other independent schools. Not only can this be naturally harmful to their image but it also makes it extremely difficult to have the same financial benefits that state schools (which are also under 'Article One' status) enjoy. One example is that a school with  Article One status can receive tax-free donations. In a legal sense, it could also be said that  children not from Article One schools have not actually completed their education in Japan. Such issues do not affect MIS.

In January 2008, the application plan to launch Makuhari International School was given final approval and 'Makuhari International School Establishment Preparatory Foundation' was established. Architects had already been carefully-chosen and much effort put into plans for a new school that would be modern, forward-looking, well-resourced and indeed a model for other International Schools in Japan. The concept behind the school was to establish a centre with excellent indoor and outdoor facilities and a learning environment which would offer much more than the average school. A school which would present various large outside leaning areas (including a large grass field) as well as specialist rooms, classes and media corners for children to work in, as well as an extremely large media centre in the heart of the school.

Due mainly to support from Chiba Prefectural Government (as well as various businesses in and around Chiba), those behind the creation of Makuhari International School defied past practices and drove the school on towards its unique status, often battling negative pressures and stereotypes on the way. They insisted that there was a real need for a quality school that teaches the Japanese Curriculum in English using native English-speaking teachers whilst being supported by the Ministry of Education. They argued that this school is exactly what the modern internationally-minded world needs. They persuaded others that with more and more Japanese parents taking their children abroad for work purposes, it was paramount that here in Chiba, at least, we could offer an educational resource to suit those children on their return, whilst at the same time offer a quality international education to foreign children already living here or coming to Japan.

As well as providing an excellent education for all our children, it is also the aim of Makuhari International School to be an important educational and community focal point for those living in the local area.  As we develop links outside the school, activities such as a Summer School are being planned using the excellent resources and facilties that Makuhari International School has to offer.