A prestigious overseas school becoming a ski resort?
May 20, 11:49
Good quality snow is also called "miracle silky snow", and Appi Kogen in Iwate Prefecture is known as a ski resort.
Amid the stagnation of tourists, new town development has begun.
The key to this is the international school attracted from overseas.
(Morioka Broadcasting Station reporter Miki Umezawa)
A prestigious school in England at a resort?
Appi Kogen in Hachimantai City, northwestern Iwate Prefecture.
Good quality snow is also called "miracle silky snow" and is known as a resort area such as one of Japan's largest ski resorts.
This August, a new facility will be opened in this place.
This is the first international school in Iwate prefecture.
The main school of this school is "Harrow School" in London, which is celebrating its 450th anniversary.
It is known as one of the most prestigious schools in the world, where former Prime Minister Churchill of the United Kingdom and the first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, also learned.
With international schools in Beijing, Hong Kong, Bangkok and other parts of Asia, Appi School will be the first affiliated school to open in Japan.
All classes are in English and boarding
What kind of education will be provided in the new school?
This April, a part of the school building was opened to the public.
School buildings, dormitories, soccer fields, etc. were steadily being developed on a vast site of about 10 hectares.
It is a 7-year system from 11 to 18 years old, and all classes are conducted in English.
In addition to major subjects such as mathematics and language, a wide range of subjects are prepared to deepen learning in your favorite fields such as music, design, and business, and it is said that you will eventually aim to enter a prestigious university in the world.
In addition, extracurricular lessons that take advantage of the environment of Appi Kogen, such as skiing and mountain climbing, are planned.
In addition, the boarding system allows students to live together in the Abi Kogen.
The 40 faculty members who have already been hired are mainly British.
The school is initially recruiting 200 students and will eventually accept 920 students throughout the school.
Tuition fees, including dormitory fees, range from 8.5 million to 9.2 million yen per year.
It may seem difficult to reach, but it is said that applications are being received from both inside and outside of Japan, mainly in Asia.
Aiming for 10,000 permanent residents A new school with rising expectations
In fact, this school is expected to play an important role in the community development concept that is advancing throughout the area.
The name of the concept is "Abi Valley Concept Project".
Our goal is to be a global city with the theme of "sightseeing, education, and health."
The concept was announced two years ago.
Behind the scenes is the harsh situation facing Abi.
Since the opening of the ski resort in 1981, 1.5 million skiers visited during the peak season from 1991 to 1992, but the number of customers has increased due to the recession caused by the bursting of the bubble economy and the slump in the domestic ski boom. Significantly reduced.
Furthermore, as a result of the spread of the new corona infection and a significant decrease in the number of customers not only from Japan but also from overseas, the number of people fell below 300,000 for the first time in the season from 2020 to the following year.
The number of pensions that are no longer open is increasing in the surrounding area, and how to regain the bustle of the area has become a major issue.
The project aims to increase the number of permanent residents, including foreigners, to 10,000 in the future by improving the environment for education and medical care in addition to the tourism industry, which has been the mainstay of the project.
The project will be carried out by a resort development company in Morioka City, which operates ski resorts, golf courses, and hotels on the Appi Kogen.
The company's president says he felt the limits of relying solely on strategies to attract tourists.
President of Iwate Hotel and Resort Kurosawa
"Efforts have been made to get people to visit Appi Kogen from afar for sightseeing such as skiing, but it was extremely difficult and it was difficult to achieve great results
. In addition to activities to attract customers, we would like to add completely different activities to increase the permanent population and make the area attractive to the people around us. "
And I think that the key to increasing the resident population is the international school.
The new school is expected to have a total of about 1000 students and teachers, and will play a central role in attracting permanent residents.
President of Iwate Hotel and Resort Kurosawa
"Harrow School's people alone are expected to significantly increase the population of Appi Kogen.
Along with that, new businesses will be launched around the school. The
people involved in it will be Abi Kogen .
I think we can expect an increase in the population due to derivative effects such as living in. "
The key to attracting is "rich nature"
The most appealing point in attracting schools was the rich natural environment of Appi.
While ski resorts and golf courses are maintained, beech forests spread out around the area, and you can see beautiful stars and fireflies.
We have set out our strength as having abundant opportunities for outdoor education that makes the most of nature.
The English principal also said that he was very attracted to the environment in which the school was located.
Harrow School Principal Michael Farley
"Britain originally has a culture of boarding.
Raising people in an environment a little far from the city.
Raising children in nature has a positive effect on the mind and body. Because I am thinking, I am
the only one in our international school that is blessed with abundant outdoor opportunities in an environment so close to nature. "
The school is currently recruiting students for extracurricular activities that take advantage of the nature of Appi Kogen, such as skiing, mountain biking, and starry sky observation.
In addition, it is said that the growing needs of international schools in Japan helped to attract them.
This is because there are many movements to send children to study abroad, mainly among the wealthy, and it is thought that there is a growing demand for a place where children can acquire advanced education using English while staying in Japan.
New school Local support
Local governments are also embarking on support for the opening of the school.
Following the approval of the school, the prefecture and Hachimantai City will subsidize more than 320 million yen this year for the operation and construction of the school building.
The school is considering opening part of the facility to local residents, and plans to engage in sports exchanges such as ski competitions with local children.
We also encourage students and teachers to actively utilize local stores, and hope to contribute to the revitalization of the local economy.
Hachimantai City and Iwate Prefecture are planning to conclude cooperation agreements with schools in the future, expecting cultural and sports exchanges between international school students and local children.
Hachimantai City Planning and Finance Section Chief Sekimoto
"We have a brand power as a prestigious school in the world, so we would like to make use of it as a city. We believe that
the opening of the school will further promote the internationalization of Appi Kogen .
I hope to actively interact with the children and students in the city
The local voice is
Locals are also interested in what changes the new school will bring.
"I think there will be a flow of people, so there is a sense of expectation that people of unprecedented customer base and age group will come to the pension and Abi Kogen.
This area is gradually gaining power .
I feel that it's gone, so I hope young people, teachers, and family members come and do something new. "
"Attracting world-famous schools".
At first, I was skeptical about how it would affect the revitalization of Appi Kogen, which is famous as a resort area.
However, as the school was opened to the public in April and its contents became clear, I feel that the expectations of local residents and local governments have gradually increased.
The school is scheduled to open on August 29th.
How will the new school make a difference in the community?
I would like to keep an eye on future developments.
Morioka Broadcasting Station Reporter
Joined in 2020
Police / Judicial Police, Hachimantai Municipal Administration
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