Quick summary of key school information
|Language of instruction||English|
|Native English teachers|
|Extra languages (other than English)|
|Maximum||20 students / class|
All the details about this school in their own words
|Number of students||
|Number of nationalities represented in the school||
|Most common nationality||
Japanese (22%) or dual nationality Japanese ( 28%)
|Ratio of local students to international students||
Foreign passports holders, 50%. Japanese dual nationality, 28%. Japanese holding only Japanese passports, 22%.
|Max. number of students per class||
Early Learning Center & Elementary School, 20. Middle School, 20. High School, 20.
|Does the school employ teaching assistants?||
Teaching Assistants are used in ELC and some ES grades, and in some subjects such as Art and Design.
|Native English speaking teachers||
|Language support for students not fluent in English||
YIS' English as an Additional Language Department works with students in class and out of class to support their English language development.
|Additional language classes offered by the school||
Japanese, French, Spanish, Chinese, German, Korean
|Use of technology in the classroom||
YIS teachers have enthusiastically embraced the integrated use of technology for many years. We leverage advanced technologies and progressive teaching approaches together with responsible digital citizenship to enhance student learning, promote collaboration and facilitate the creation and sharing of knowledge locally and globally. Students and staff possess a shared recognition that students must make wise decisions about their own behavior through a sense of good citizenship and responsibility to the YIS community.
The school's 1:1 program provides students in Kindergarten to Grade 5 with individual iPads which they keep at school. Grade 5 students are also provided with a laptop that allows them to familiarize themselves with the device before they transition to using a laptop full-time in Secondary School. Every Middle School and High School student is provided a laptop computer with standardized software that they are able to use at home as well as at school. iPads and other forms of technology are also used in our ELC to support the Reggio Emilia-based learning program.
|Is the school ready to use virtual classrooms when needed? (e.g. teaching lessons online if the school is closed, e.g. during COVID-19 closures)||
YIS has established a Continuous Learning Program (CLP) to be used in times of emergency when our physical campus cannot be used, such as during the State of Emergency implemented by the Japanese government during the COVID-19 pandemic. The CLP is composed of an Off-Campus and Blended Learning Model. The Off-Campus model is used during a temporary campus closure; the Blended model is used when grades alternate coming to campus for classes. Seesaw, a digital platform for sharing class/student work that is accessible by parents, is used in ES; Google Classroom is used in Secondary School. Daily video conferencing in group and private sessions and online submission and tracking of student work via our Veracross database system (used as a regular part of school operations when school is open as usual and during temporary campus closures) are the foundation the CLP. Online parent conferences are used when required.
|Do teachers assign homework to their students?||
The assignment of homework differs according to the grade level. The Elementary School and Secondary School each have a Homework Policy to provide guidance on this important issue.
|Approximate hours of homework given||
YIS believes that children need to have a balance in their life between home and school. It is important for them to have time to relax and enjoy their childhood with family and friends, pursue and develop their own interests or have some quiet time after school hours. The school also recognizes that home learning can be a source of tension and conflict between parents and children. It encourages positive relationships at home as these have a much bigger impact on children’s learning and development.
YIS expects Elementary School children to read at home everyday. The school encourages parents to read with their children regularly, especially in their home and family language. Homework may only be assigned Monday to Friday, with no compulsory homework on weekends and holidays. However, children who are engaged in homework or research tasks have the freedom to work on weekends and holidays. Students within grades and classes may receive different amounts and types of homework on a case by case basis.
The school realizes that it is difficult to define a set time for homework as individual students work at different rates and there may be variations at different times of the year. The school's Homework Policy for all grade levels provides further guidelines on the amount of recommended time for homework and when it should not be assigned.
The presence or absence of waiting lists at different grade levels changes yearly.
|Entry evaluation for students||
YIS is a non-selective school. Exams or assessments are not conducted. However, a review of report cards, transcripts and other documents is conducted to understand the background and needs of the applicant. Should the parents or the school require further consultation about the student, such as regarding the student's level of English or any special needs support, a discussion of the topic in conjunction with the family will be conducted by the school.
|Deadline for registration (new academic year)||
Residents of Japan applying to ELC must apply by the second week of April. Residents of Japan applying to HS must apply by the third week of January. Applicants residing outside Japan may enroll at any time during the school year up until May 1.
|Students can join after academic year begins||
Only applicants residing outside Japan may enroll at any time during the school year up until May 1.
|Percentage of students who pursue further education post-graduation||
95% - 100% attend a higher educational institution. Approximately 5% take a gap year.
|External examinations or assessments available||
International Baccalaureate Diploma
|Do students practice religion at the school? What religion?||
YIS is a secular school.
|School bus service available||
|Dedicated staff/programs for students with special learning needs||
|Learning support offered||
The Learning Support department works in collaboration with the Counselors and the English as an Additional Language (EAL) teachers to support students with mild needs in the areas of academics, behavior and social and emotional development. Learning Support services range from observations and consultation with staff and parents to a range of individualized and group instruction for students with various learning needs. Psycho-Educational and Speech and Language evaluations are available on a needs basis within the department. Applicants with mild social/emotional issues, learning difficulties or other special needs are referred to the learning support staff for evaluation during the application process. Admissions decisions are made by the relevant principal. Observations, past records and discussions with teachers and parents precede the diagnostic and speech assessments. Where necessary, parents may be requested to obtain external educational assessments in order to understand and serve student needs more effectively.
|School start time||
ELC 8:45 am
|School finish time||
ELC half-day program, 12:00 pm
|Supervised care before/after school||
|Extracurricular activities or clubs offered||
New clubs and activities are introduced annually. Our Aquatics Program possesses a multipurpose goal of teaching students about aquatics in the curriculum and in extracurricular activities.
The list below includes some of the activities provided.
|School provided lunches||
A cafeteria on campus provides meals and snacks for sale.
|Food alternatives for special dietary needs (ie. vegan, kosher, halal etc)||
Vegetarian meals are available daily. Vegan food items are occasionally available.
|Sports activities included||
Physical Education classes, including an on-site Aquatics Program, are offered throughout grade levels. The curriculum for each level caters to the development of the students in the grade offering traditional team sports, individual sports and sports leadership opportunities.
|Sports facilities at the school||
In addition to a full-size artificial turf sports field designed for soccer and field hockey, students develop athletic skill and spirit through the use of our 6-lane, 25 meter indoor heated swimming pool, complete with timing touch pads; a double gym with two full size basketball courts and a spectator balcony, and a dance studio.
|Sports teams or sport competitions available for students||
Yes. The school year is divided into three sports seasons. Teams compete in Japan and overseas. Students in Secondary School have the option of participating in after-school team sports throughout the school year. Our on-site Aquatics Program provides Secondary Students the opportunity to participate in a swim team.
|Other facilities at the school||
Multiple hub spaces on every level of the North Building allow learning to flow into and out of the classroom freely, and provide a node of community interaction. Hubs are furnished with moveable furniture such as Yogibo bean bags, cushions, geometrically-shaped desks and a variety of chairs.
The Street, a promenade between the North and South Building, contains two 3-on-3 basketball courts and a street-side cafe with al fresco seating.
Our main library, with a separate amphitheater, has satellite libraries throughout the school reinforcing our commitment to making reading a central part of YIS culture.
Our 230-seat cafeteria is connected to the covered pergola, facing the sports field, with a capacity for 40 people outside. The cafeteria is equipped with audio-visual equipment and a stage for presentations, assemblies and performances.
The Chowa-an and Japanese Garden pay homage to our host culture as the home of our multifaceted Japanese Culture Program. The detached structure inspired by Japanese teahouse design, and built in collaboration with a Master of the Japanese Tea Ceremony, is a fitting venue for the appreciation of Japanese arts. The 4F deck surrounding the Chowa-an is available for collaborative work or informal gatherings.
The open ceiling, industrial design theme of the Art & Design studios crafts a professional, creative working space with a dedicated fully-equipped Maker Space with specialized work tables that allow students to work with a wide range of media. The kiln room with a new front-loading, state-of-the-art electric kiln is a highlight of our ceramics program that offers students the opportunity to gain a thorough understanding of the pottery making process.
Our state-of-the-art 411-seat auditorium is designed to support individual and group expression with a large backstage area, fully retractable electric seating, wood louver panels for enhanced acoustic properties, retractable sound blinds to adjust the sound tone, concert quality LCD lighting rigs and sound system, a lighting and audio-visual control area on the balcony level, and a theatre foyer with kitchenette facilities for receptions. A full catwalk system and an HD projector with a retractable screen renders allows this multipurpose space to be used for performances, workshops, exhibitions, exams or conferences.
Our two drama spaces, separated by a retractable soundproof dividing wall, can be combined into a large black box theater for authentic, intimate performances.
An integrated recording studio is outfitted to record audio from any of our four music rooms. A dedicated Japanese music room with tatami flooring and built-in storage space creates an ideal setting for our Japanese music students and koto ensembles to practice.
|Qualities and characteristics best defining the school||
Yokohama International School is a warm and caring international community where families from all backgrounds feel welcome and students have abundant opportunities to explore, develop and challenge themselves. A medium-sized IB Continuum School, it offers all three main programs of the International Baccalaureate, providing an inquiry-centered, transdisciplinary and skills-focused learning continuum from early years through high school. Together, students, staff and parents strive to fulfill our simple yet dynamic mission: Live Learn Lead.
Our new campus, designed by Kengo Kuma & Associates specifically for our learning programs and teaching philosophy, is adjacent to a shopping complex and close to other commercial and residential areas of the Honmoku neighborhood in Yokohama. Learning in our school occurs everywhere and in a variety of settings, not only in classrooms; our innovative campus ensures the environment we create supports this approach. Built for our learning community, every space is designed to be a learning space, and the wood panelling theme and natural light features retain and enhance the warm sense of community for which our school is known.
A showcase for international education in Yokohama, our 14,685m2 site is comprised of the 4-story North Building that houses the library, cafeteria, auditorium and most of the classroom areas and administrative offices, and the 3-story South Building that houses the Early Learning Center and physical education facilities, including a double gymnasium and indoor swimming pool. A full-size athletic field complements the indoor athletic facilities. Consistent with our school's emphasis on the importance of community, the entire campus is designed for wheelchair accessibility, diversity, equity and inclusion. Multiple hub spaces inside and outside for group interaction are an essential element of the campus that create a sense of community when students of varying ages, staff, parents and alumni gather together and feel a connection to the physical space.
To pay homage to our host country and the culture that we live within, styling cues reflect Japanese modern and traditional architecture and aesthetics, particularly those that reflect harmony between man-made environments and the natural world, and utilize materials that are both aesthetically pleasing and ecologically sound.
|Teaching approach of the school||
YIS values its international, interdependent learning community grounded in its IB-centered academic programs that extending beyond the classroom and embrace all members of the school community. True to the school's mission - Live Learn Lead - it aims to inspire students and to provide them with the academic and social skills that will enable them to fulfill their potential both individually and collaboratively. Learning opportunities beyond the classroom include field trips and expeditions near and far, a broad range of student activities, and a comprehensive service program enabling students of all ages opportunities to address local, regional and global community needs. Student and teacher learning is inquiry-based and transdisciplinary, allowing individuals to develop personal interests and unique approaches to understanding. Technology is interwoven in the learning process and, while it does not drive learning, it can help open incredible new avenues to enhance and extend learning. Students take advantage of extensive activities offerings, adventurous excursions, and an enriching service learning program to pursue their passions, discover new interests and make a difference in the world.