Are schools in Okinawa more relaxed in their teaching approach due to the weather

island cyclist

Well-known member
Founding Member
Mar 26, 2020
I had heard schools in Hawaii are kind of kick back and wonder if Okinawan schools are the same. Here on the mainland, my daughter went thru grade 1 to 12 and basically when you get to high school, it can get tough or it can be a waste of time for 3 years. There's a reason for that and that is there are many types of remedial type jobs that need to be filled here.
I worked in a vegetable processing and packaging plant for 6 months and I'll tell you there was nothing exciting about it. I was the only American in its 100 year history that worked there. I got to admit, I got along with the 80 year old owner and he paid me well. :)
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Okinawa.Org Staff
Dec 26, 2018
I don't think the weather has much of a role in education. They run the AC and do physical activity as normal, with some schools even having a pool for swimming classes.

I think that elementary and junior high school is definitely essential, as there is no need for a high school diploma in Japan unlike it being a basic requirement in the US (or a GED) to land any sort of job, in order to prepare oneself to be social in any direction chosen in life here.

One may not be as successful with just graduating J.H.S. over H.S., but, it could very well be the other way around with the uneducated person learning a skilled trade and becoming very good at it while the high-school grad going off to pursue, say, cutting hair. This goes for the same in the US as well for high-school grads versus college grads; it all depends on your major and, even then, the skills you acquire from school or a trade school to perform an outstanding job to get that extra pay.

Remedial jobs, from my observation, are quickly being filled in Okinawa. But seeing who they are filled by, and knowing they are paid the same for their labor as a Japanese national, doesn't necessarily make them "remedial" as someone has to do it. If you weren't packing the veggies, who would?

But to revisit high school being a waste of time: I don't think so. Even though it's not required, there is still learning going on. However, the best one can learn in high-school is proper socialization and learning the hierarchy of "power" in Japan to obey and follow so at one point in time, when you're ready, you can lead, even if that means stepping up from a cashier position to a shift manager.