HUSKY EXPRESS April 1, 2019


 Administration Corner 

  Head of School    

Organizational Chart for Hokkaido International School 

Last year in April, many in our community will remember that the Accrediting Commission for Schools - Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC for short) sent a Visiting Committee to review our school’s progress and provide direction for our future.

Of the two key recommendations, the school has worked on the following and it is our duty to report on the progress made and conclusions reached. We start here with the recommendation:

[From the April 2018 WASC Report]

The Visiting Committee therefore recommends:

  1. The Head of School, with the support of the Executive Board, leads the development and adoption of a simple process framework that identifies who is responsible for making decisions, and secondly makes these individuals or groups accountable to the community for the work required.
  2. Those identified with responsibilities will be required to develop with the support and involvement of the Head of School, appropriate systems, processes, and structures so decision making is aligned and the school community has clarity. These systems, processes, and structures must be clearly articulated and shared with the school community.
  3. The development of a clear organizational chart that shows the school’s governance and leadership structures, the school decision making processes, and where responsibilities lie. This organizational chart must be communicated with the community and included in the school’s next WASC Progress Report.

In following up on the recommendations of the WASC report, the head of school met with the WASC Leadership Team (an extension of the school’s Curriculum Curriculum) to discuss and draft an organizational chart, which was then presented to staff. This was then taken to the Executive Board for input and later adopted for use in the school.

Additional conversations had with the WASC Visiting Committee outlined their desire for HIS to create an organizational chart that reflected the school in its current structure and one reflective of other international and independent schools of our kind. To that end, HIS administration investigated several school organizational charts including those of Tokyo International School, Tsukuba International School and the British School of Tokyo, fellow members of the Japan Council of International Schools to which HIS is a founding member. Another key input was an organizational chart developed for schools operating under charter with International School Services, the organization currently seeking HIS’ next head of school.

As required by our WASC accreditation follow up and ahead of the WASC Progress Report, which we must submit by June of this school year, this article serves to introduce to the school community the organizational structure under which the school operates. Please look for a copy of this in an ALMA email that will be sent out to you this coming week along with a supporting document that outlines the Roles and Responsibilities of positions and groups within the chart.

Sincerely yours,
Barry Ratzliff

2019 ~ 2020 Financial Assistance Announcement

This is the first of four consecutive announcements for Financial Assistance. Annually, HIS sets aside 5% of its tuition revenues to support families who demonstrate financial need. Families may apply for financial assistance in the form of tuition reductions.

Families must apply each year in spring for the following academic year. The Tuition Assistance Committee reviews all applications in spring and makes recommendations for tuition assistance that range from 15% ~ 50%, based upon the situation and the amount of available funds.

The decisions on each application will be sent out to applicant families in late May or June.

Students who are receiving Financial Assistance have a responsibility to maintain a good standing academically and behaviorally. In granting the scholarships and assistance, the Tuition Assistance Committee takes into consideration the student’s scholastic performance, school behavior and academic attitude from the previous year.

In principle, financial assistance is viewed as a temporary measure of support to help families through a challenging period.

If you wish to pick up an application packet from the office, please stop by Ms. Abe’s desk in the office and ask for an application packet. The application window is from April 3 ~ May 3.


  From the Principal’s Office  

2019-2020 Secondary Course Selections by April 5th
If you have not already done so, please return course selection forms to me by Friday April 5th.

AP Exam Payment by April 12th
Students taking AP exams this May should pay their fees by April 12th next week. I will be distributing invoices by Thursday (April 4th). Payment can be made at the school office.
Please provide exact change.

Secondary Progress Reports (Quarter 3)
We are nearing the end of quarter 3 on April 12th.
Progress reports will be uploaded to Alma the following week on April 19th.
As soon as they are done and available for view, I will send a notification email.

PTA Meeting - Wednesday, April 3rd
Looking forward to seeing parents at the next PTA meeting this week on Wednesday, April 3rd, from 15:45 in Room 206.
Everyone is welcome, please join us!
If you would like to have a babysitter, please contact me at

Spring Bazaar Volunteers Needed
The PTA is looking for volunteers for the Spring Bazaar. If you are willing to pitch in, please sign up!
Volunteers are needed for the following duties:
- Setting up (the day before the Spring Bazaar and/or the day of)
- Ticket sale (these are tickets for purchasing food/drinks and student activities/games)
- PTA vending booth (selling donated goods)
- Organizing/sorting of donated goods (in advance of the bazaar)
- Bake sale/ coffee/tea sale (at the bazaar)
If you are interested, please contact us at: and/or please come to the next PTA meeting on Wednesday, April 3rd

Spring Bazaar Donations:
If you have some items that you’d like to get rid of but are not planning on having your own vending space at the bazaar, please consider a donation to the PTA. All proceeds from sales go toward grants to school programming (which directly benefit our children).
A donation box is situated in front of the genkan.
Look for the big red caged trolley and the “Spring Bazaar Donations” sign.
If you have things that are still in good condition but are no longer used/needed, we will find them a new home!
Maybe you can encourage your child/ren to go through their toys and books!
* No clothes please (unless new with a tag). Also, no shoes or stuffed animals.
* All proceeds from sales provide grants to clubs, activities, and materials which benefit student learning and enjoyment of school life.

Vendor Information:
Vendors can participate in the flea market to sell used or new goods - clothes, toys, books, handicrafts, etc. (excluding food/drinks). Vendor spaces are open to the school community and the general public. A vendor space costs ¥1,500 and measures approximately 2 x 1.5 meters (a discount rate of ¥1,000 applies for current HIS Staff, Parents and Students).
To reserve a vendor space, please email or call HIS (011-816-5000) by Wednesday, April 10th.
Vendor space positions are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis - hurry up and register!!!
*HIS welcomes amateur and professional vendors alike. Specific guidelines will be explained to all vendors in order to ensure a relaxed atmosphere for this family event.

SAT Exam Schedule - Semester 2
If you are a first time SAT taker, you will need to set up a College Board account to register. Please come to see me if you have any questions.

  • May 4th - SAT with Essay, SAT without Essay, and SAT Subject Tests offered on this date. Final deadline for registration” April 5th
  • June 1st - SAT Subject Tests only (No SAT with Essay or SAT without Essay). Final deadline for registration: May 3rd

 The Publications & Media class 

This year the students have revived the online student website, www.TheHusky Pulse with lots of new content including artwork from elementary, middle, and high school students, MP3 narratives, high school writings, student articles on HIS events and the Hokkaido outdoors.

Also check out HIS Newscast, a series of quirky video reports created by high school students.

The Husky Pulse, created by students for all to see.


Dear Parents and Guardians,
Each year, the HIS music department produces a 2-hour musical show outside campus to provide students with an opportunity to perform in a professional hall setting. This year we will be in the Sapporo Kitara Concert Hall again, one of the most prestigious concert halls in Japan. We are now reaching out for volunteer parents who would help us with (re)constructing and organizing costumes for over 120 students.

For those of you who can sew or have a knack for arts and crafts, please contact Megumi at by February 14th, 2019. In your e-mail, please include:
- - 1. Your interest: crafts or sewing
- - 2. I have a sewing machine / I do not have one (but know how to use) / I do not know how to use a sewing machine
- - 3. If applicable, your sewing level: I can sew simple things / I can make a dress/shirt/ etc.
- - 4. Your availability:
I can come to school to work on certain days
I can work at home
I can commit ____amount of time____ per week to work on projects

More information for other costume and props work (such as measuring, packing each students' costumes, etc.) will follow in later months.
In this year’s production, we will be providing costumes for around 130 students. It is definitely a hefty amount of people! Therefore, we ask for your commitment and flexibility. Communication will be a must. For this reason, projects will only be given to those who have signed up via e-mail.
Please note that all projects will be done and completed prior to the concert day, and you will be able to see the concert seated (no assistance backstage necessary)!

If you have any questions, please also contact Megumi at the address mentioned above.

Kitara Concert Costume Team

 @ Niseko 

Welcome Back
I hope that all had a restful, peaceful and mindful break. School resumes tomorrow at 8:30.


Thank You, Doi san
Thank you, Doi san for coming in during the break to clean the boot racks in the genkin. The winter season left a lot of dirt and grit. Thank you for your extra work to keep us clean and organized.

Season of the Gumboot
On a somewhat related note, please make sure your child is ready for our annual mud season. Please ensure that each kid has extra socks and pants stored at school. We still have a healthy amount of snow left on the field for playtime.

Financial Assistance Program THANK YOU!
As Financial Assistance program enters our third year of fundraising, big cheers to Hokkaido Tracks, Powderlife, and MNK for their promise to donate money. I will be sending more detailed information in an upcoming email regarding the Financial Assistance Program.

No Pikinini April 1 and 8
Please note that there will be no Pikini service on April 1 and April 8. They are on a well-deserved break between the winter and summer tourist seasons.

Seasonal School Websites are Up and Running.
It is going to be a radical summer of learning. We have already received student applications from Taipei, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

Please kindly share with your friends.

Upcoming Dates:

  • April 1-No Pikinini Lunch Service.
  • April 8- No Pikinini Lunch Service.
  • April 25 - MP1-MP3 Poetry Cafe 2:15- 3:15

Barry Mernin 
Hokkaido International School Niseko

 Elementary Variety Show 

 Greetings from the Executive Board 

If you wish to learn about what the Executive Board is
and what we do, please follow this link to the HIS homepage:
(Governance page is here)
If you wish to read the minutes to our meetings,
to read in detail, what exactly was discussed and decided on,
then follow this link to the HIS homepage minutes archive:
(Minutes Archive is here)

 HIS Parent E-mailing List 


Husky Parents!!
Do you ever have trouble receiving the weekly HEx, Husky-Info bulletins or other school-wide emails?  Do you have another email address to which you’d like to receive these electronic communications? If so, please email us at  or phone the main office so we can update our mailing lists and include you as soon as possible!

 Information from the Music department 

After School Violin and Piano Program

Please consider joining the After School Violin and Piano program, where we offer private lessons for students from preschool to highschool. There are limited rental violins also available for elementary students.

We currently have 3 excellent professional violin teachers and 1 piano teacher. If you are interested, please read the attached document below, which has information about our teachers and their respective lesson fees and times.

Sign up will be a first-come-first-serve basis except for those students who decide to continue lessons from last year. All returning and new students must sign the Application/Consent Form by Aug. 30 (Thursday)

There will be envelopes in front of the music room door. Please submit the forms into the appropriate envelope by the deadline. 



Lesson Room


Teaching Language

Ms. Ichikawa (Violin)


Rm 206

3:45 - 6:00


Ms. Oshima (Piano)


Music Room

3:45 - 6:00


Ms. Kawamura (Violin)


Rm 201

3:45- 6:00

Japanese or English

Ms. Tomioka (Violin)


Rm 206

3:45 - 6:00


Violin Lesson Fee
30 min lesson - ¥3 500 /lesson
45 min lesson - ¥5 000/lesson
60 min lesson - ¥6 500 /lesson

Piano Lesson Fee
30 min lesson - ¥3 000 /lesson
45 min lesson - ¥4 250 /lesson
60 min lesson - ¥5 500 /lesson




【 検定時間 】各級とも60分 (ただし8級~10級は40分)
【 検 定 料 】

  • 準2級(高校在学程度):2,500円
  • 3級(中学卒業程度):2,500円
  • 4級(中学在学程度):2,500円
  • 5級(小学6年生修了程度):2,000円
  • 6級(小学5年生修了程度):2,000円
  • 7級(小学4年生修了程度):2,000円
  • 8級(小学3年生修了程度):1,500円
  • 9級(小学2年生修了程度):1,500円
  • 10級(小学1年生修了程度):1,500円


【校内締切日】2019年4月23 日(火)厳守

Dear Husky Community,

The HIS Japanese Department would like to announce that we are scheduling the Kanji Proficiency Test (Kanji Kentei) on Friday, June 14th at HIS during the school hours.

We believe that this allows the students to learn their grade level in kanji and also helps them set a goal for their study.

Students who are enrolled in MP2/MP3 Heritage Japanese Class, MS/HS Advanced Japanese Class will be taking this test. If there are any conflicts or if you have any questions, please email Ms. Miyatake (

Students can choose from level 2 through level 10.
Students will take their application form home soon.

Please hand in the form by Tuesday, April 23rd with the registration money.

  • Levels and Fee:
  • Level 2 (University): 3500 yen
  • Level semi-2 (10~12th grade): 2500 yen
  • Level 3 (9th grade): 2500 yen
  • Level 4 (7~9th grade): 2500 yen
  • Level 5 (6th grade): 2000 yen
  • Level 6 (5th grade): 2000 yen
  • Level 7 (4th grade): 2000 yen
  • Level 8 (3rd grade): 1500 yen
  • Level 9 (2nd grade): 1500 yen
  • Level 10 (1st grade): 1500 yen

For more detail, please refer to

②Multicultural Fairボランティアのお願い
4月19日(金)12時半から2時まで日本語科で小学生向けにMulticultural Fairを行います。その際、シルバーセンターから5名のボランティアの方々にお越しいただき、昔の遊び(お手玉、あやとり、こま、けん玉、折り紙)をEYと小学生に教えていただきます。


Sincerely yours,
Japanese Department

 Upcoming Events 


Upcoming EVENTS

April 9 Elementary Assembly (10:30 in MPR)
April 24 Elementary Variety Show
April 26 Sports Award Dinner
April 29-May 1 Golden Week Holidays / No School
May 7 Elementary Assembly (10:30 in MPR)
May 11 Elementary Sports Day
June 17 Moving On Up Ceremony
June 18 Elementary Assembly (10:30 in MPR)

 From PTA 

PTA Steering Committee Meetings
Please note, all Steering Committee meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month. Any parent is welcome to attend, and please let Megumi or Neil know if you would like to become a regular (and voting) member of the committee.

Next PTA Meeting
Looking forward to seeing parents at the next PTA meeting this week on Wednesday April 3rd, from 15:45 in Room 206.
Everyone is welcome, please join us!
If you would like to have a babysitter, please contact Neil at

English lesson offered by a parent with teaching experience. If you are interested or would like to have more details, please contact More information will be posted in PTA website as soon as it is available

PTA Information Website:


Great leadership is shown by Sasha to organize and inspire the after-school high school volleyball groups.
A reminder that the annual Sports Dinner is coming up on Friday, April 26th. Tickets for this `not to be missed` event will be available soon.
Community basketball each Wednesday at 5-7 pm.
All welcome!

The Futsul boys enjoyed a game last Thursday with Kagaku HS. It was a fast action game with many goals scored.
Community basketball each Wednesday at 5-7 pm.
All welcome!

Go Huskies!


If you are an HIS parent and are looking for a babysitter for an evening or on the weekend, please feel free to contact  
Interested HIS parents can then be provided with a list of students available for babysitting.
Also, if you are looking for a student tutor for your child, please contact  

 Husky Hugs 

Husky Hugs go out to...

  • All in a welcoming return to school from the break. 


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