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. (In contrast 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.)
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 was 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 create excellent indoor and outdoor facilities and a learning environment which would offer much more than the average school. The school thus was designed with large outside learning areas (including a large grass field), specialist rooms, open classrooms, and collaborative spaces for children to work in, as well as an expansive media centre in the heart of the school. A truly unique and enriching learning environment.
With support largely from the 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 forward towards innovation. They advocated that there was a real need for a quality school, supported by the Ministry of Education, that teaches the Japanese Curriculum in English using native English-speaking teachers to both returning Japanese and expatriates alike. They argued that MIS was exactly what a modern internationally-minded world needed. They persuaded others that with more and more Japanese parents taking their children abroad for work purposes, it was paramount that here in Chiba, we could offer an educational opportunity to suit returning children, whilst at the same time offering a quality international education to expatriate children living in or coming to Japan.
In April 2009, the realization of a dream and the hard work behind it became a reality and Makuhari International School opened its doors welcoming students in classes from K1 to Grade 6. In May 2016, an expansion of the school officially opened to include a spacious, well-equipped gymnasium, staff room, conference room, and classrooms for Learning Support, English Support, Japanese Studies, and After School Care.
As well as providing an excellent education for our students, 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 have developed links outside of the school, increasingly we have been able to collaborate for the mutual benefit of our children and others within our community – utilizing the excellent resources and facilities that Makuhari International School has to offer.