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Two elementary students wearing backpacks, one plad, the other, red.
School Year
  1. Three Term System
  2. School Entrance Ceremonies and Beginning and Ending of the Semester Ceremonies
  3. School Excursions
  4. Student Teachers
  5. High School Baseball
  6. Summer Break
  7. Athletic Festival or Undōkai
  8. Cultural Festivals
  9. Entrance Exam Season
  10. Graduation Ceremony or Sotsugyō Shiki
  11. Class Inspection
  12. Teacher Home Visits
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Students and teachers standing in gym, facing stage, listening to a speech
Students fill a gym at a graduation ceremony for a junior high school.
Photo Courtesy of Yamaguchi Junior High School.
Graduation Ceremony or Sotsugyō Shiki
As students have formal entrance ceremonies when they enter school, they also have formal ceremonies as they leave. The graduation ceremony, held in late March, is a very solemn event, without the frivolity found in many US ceremonies. The principal presents the students their diplomas, followed by a number of speeches from the principal, other teachers and younger students, which all speak of their memories of the graduating students. The graduates then also present messages to their teachers, parents and other students.
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