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Katoh Gakuen English Immersion/Bilingual Program -Bi-lingual.com-

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Teacher Candidate Information

Thank you for your interest in teaching at Katoh School. We welcome inquires from talented and motivated teachers looking to join a talented and dedicated team of teaching professionals. We offer a unique professional opportunity with the distinctive challenge of working within a Japanese national school.

Teacher Qualifications

Katoh School seeks well-qualified, experienced teachers who have a professional approach and who are flexible, open minded, and willing to be part of a Japanese school community.


The school year begins in April but the school typically employs teachers from April or August. There are approximately 220 work days in a school year. Working hours are:

Kindergarten: 8:10 ~ 4:50 (Mon. ~ Fri)
(plus about 12 Saturdays a year for special school events).
Elementary: 8:00 ~ 4:40 (Mon. ~ Fri)
(plus about 12 Saturdays a year for special school events).
Junior &
Senior High:
8:20 ~ 5:00 (Mon. ~ Fri) and 8:20 ~ 12:20 (Sat., twice a month). Teachers work approximately 25 (half-day)
Saturdays a year at the junior /senior high program.

Teachers are typically able to take a three and a half week summer break, a two-week winter break and a one week spring break. These vacation periods are composed of various Saturday substitution days and substituted workdays during the school year.

Contracts & Employment

Initial contracts are for two years and are renewable for one-year periods with mutual agreement by both the teacher and school. Contracts typically begin in either April or August each year. The school calendar is approximately 220 workdays a year. The school provides a competitive salary and benefits package. Benefits include:

All employees of Katoh School must take part in the Japanese Private School Association Health and Pension Program. Full-time employees of the school receive full Japanese national health insurance. The Health Program covers 70% of all medical expenses - including the doctor's office visit, prescriptions, and routine dental care. Dependents receive 70% coverage of the above medical benefits. The employee pays approximately half of the monthly health & pension payments and the school contributes the other half. Employees must also pay national and local income taxes. A small teacher association fee is also deducted from the monthly salary.

Total monthly deductions (including income tax, health & pension payments, etc.) amount to approximately 22% - 25% of a teacher's salary. However, as we are an accredited Japanese national school, some teachers may benefit from a tax waver treaty that Japan has signed with several other counties. Teachers from the US, New Zealand and the Philippines are eligible to file for an income tax waver for up to two years. All teachers may apply to have their pension payments refunded when they return to their home country. Most teachers seem to save between 15 - 35% of their salary and still live very comfortably.

Some important differences between Katoh School and international schools in Japan

We are a Japanese school with a Japanese national curriculum. Working within a foreign school setting it is important that teachers are flexible, patient, and open to other ways of doing things. An open mind and a relaxed attitude are important qualities of living in a foreign country and working in a Japanese school. You will need to bend somewhat in order to be effective here. Extra time and effort are necessary for lesson preparation and coordination with other teaching partners. Another difference is that nearly all of the students are second language learners of English and will have somewhat limited English skills. Therefore, you must integrate English language objectives into your content instruction. This often requires more lesson preparation than teaching in an international school setting. Extra effort is also required to overcome possible language barriers between you and the Japanese staff. There are many meetings, some of which are done in Japanese with English translation. We have weekly staff meetings as well as curriculum meetings, planning meetings, "debriefing" meetings to review & evaluate past school events and "study" meetings to explore educational issues related to the program. There are many school events and many non-teaching responsibilities for teachers that require more of the teacher's time and attention than in most full-time teaching situations back home (see below). Because of the various responsibilities involved in being an immersion teacher and the challenges in adjusting to a new culture, the position is not for individuals that tire easily or have chronic health concerns. The school is also not a good choice for teachers looking for a “working holiday” abroad.

Other Duties

Teachers are often asked to carry out duties that may not be expected of teachers in a western school setting. Depending on your assignment, some of these duties may include:

These are some of the things that prospective teachers need to be aware of before they consider teaching at Katoh School. Knowing these things up front will hopefully help teachers adjust to their new experience more quickly. Yet put in context, few of these things are overly burdensome for teachers who are... committed to learning about Japan and Japanese education, strongly believe in the "mission" and philosophy of the program, and want to be at the cutting edge of bilingual education in Japan. The potential for personal and professional growth is immense. It is a unique professional experience, unlike anything else back home or in Japan! We hope you will come to feel as proud of being a teacher and part of this exciting program as we do.

How to Apply

Applications are accepted throughout the year and personal interviews are required. Most interviewing takes place at the recruiting fairs or via the internet. General employment inquiries are also accepted (be sure to include a copy of your CV).

Formal Applications for ADVERTISED POSITIONS should include:

Videotapes, CDs, DVD, iMovies, portfolios, awards, etc. may also be forwarded in support of candidate's application but they will not be returned.

Applications should be sent to:

Gay-Ann Bagotchay, K-12 Immersion/Bilingual Director
Katoh Gyoshu Schools - Immersion and Bilingual Programs
1361-1 Nakamiyo, Okanomiya
Numazu, Shizuoka
JAPAN 410-0011

Email: gbagotchay@gyoshu.ed.jp

Katoh Gakuen English Immersion/Bilingual Program