Culture Note 5: Japan’s Educational System
Japan’s Educational System
Most children in Japan attend kindergartens or nursery schools before entering elementary school. Compulsory education comprises six years of elementary school and three years of junior high school. Although not compulsory, over 90% of Junior high students go on to high school for three years. About half of high school graduates attend a university or junior college. Admissions to high schools and universities is usually based on an entrance exam.
The Japanese school year starts in April and ends in March, with a long vacation in summer and two shorter breaks in winter and spring.
6-12 years old (Elementary School)
12-15 years old (Junior High School)
16-18 years old (High School)
19-20 years old (Junior College)
19-22 years old (University)
after 22 years old (Graduate School)