Academics

Academic excellence

Learning at MBIS begins in the Montessori classroom (ages 3-6), then transitions through our Elementary (grades 1-6) and Upper School (grades 7-12). We have spent decades developing and fine-tuning a whole-school, integrated curriculum, underpinned by a well-established, standards-based educational system (California Standards/Common Core).

Although, historically, the majority of our students have gone on to attend colleges in North America, over the last decade, there has been an increased diversity in placement, with many choosing to stay in Japan.  Recognizing this trend, and the need to better prepare our students for the demands of an increasingly interconnected world, in 2017 we began implementing the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (grades 11-12).

Some of the highlights of the academic program at MBIS include:

  • A dedication to holistic, whole-child development: social, emotional, physical, cultural, artistic - we go beyond a single-minded focus on academic achievement.
  • Experienced teachers, who are offered a strong, wide range of ongoing professional development opportunities.  Our teacher retention rates demonstrate a strong and healthy workplace.
  • A broad, rich, but also balanced approach to technology in our curriculum.  While we utilize 1-1 device programs in most grades, we aim to integrate technology to support classroom teaching and learning, rather than replace it.
  • Learning enriched by field trips and off-campus activities that connect our students to the wider community.
  • A range of opportunities to interact, academically and athletically, with students in our region, throughout Japan, and around East and South East Asia.
  • An inclusive, successful, and well-recognized athletic program.  As a small school, everyone has a chance to join in.
  • Academic strength validated by graduates who have gone on to secure placements at top universities around the world.

How do we ensure success?

It would be easy to simply point to standardized scores, graduation statistics and college placement as indicators for success. However, success only comes through hard work.  Our faculty are constantly working together to actively improve teaching and learning at MBIS. We utilize a six-year cycle that involves data-based monitoring, evaluation, and redevelopment - ensuring that our curriculum is dynamic, flexible, and focused on the changing needs of a truly diverse student body.  We are fully accredited by an official American education agency (WASC), and the International Baccalaureate Organization. Our accreditation and commitment to educational excellence means that our students have been able to further their academic careers at colleges and universities throughout the world.