Nara Prefectural Seisho Junior & Senior High School of Math and Science
Seisho was established in 2004. Seisho was the first math and science specialist high school in Japan. Seisho has been designated as a SSH (Super Science High School) since six years ago, 2011. Super Science High Schools (SSH) are high schools that prioritize science, technology, and mathematics and in so doing that receive the SSH designation awarded by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). Seisho Junior High School was founded as the first and only prefectural junior high school in Nara.
1. Seisho High School
High school students start their research projects in Grade 10. In their first year, Grade 10, they choose their topics and begin their research. At the end of the year, they have a science presentation competition.
In the second year, Grade 11, they conduct experiments based on their hypothesis. Using the data, they make both oral and poster presentations. Many of them participate in the area’s academic conferences and present their research projects there.
In the third year, Grade 12, they improve their research and complete their projects. Their research or academic conference achievements are used to enter universities.
2. Super Science High School (SSH)
The program was launched as part of its “Science Literacy Enhancement Initiatives” in 2002. SSH schools with this status receive increased funding and are encouraged to develop links with universities and other academic institutions.
Seisho was first designated as a SSH five years ago. After that, Seisho has been trying to encourage students’ interests in science and math related fields. We have a lot of school events related to science and technology such as field work and lectures from university professors of science departments.
Seisho’s goal as a SSH is to foster students that will play an active part in the global scientific community.
3. Partner Schools Project
Nara Prefectural Seisho High School and Princess Chulabhorn Science High School Nakhon Si Thammarat (PCSHSNST)
In 2013, Seisho started our partner relationship with PCSHSNST in Thailand. Since then, we have continued to nurture this “Partner Schools Project” through activities such as Skype sessions and annual, mutual school visits to Thailand and Japan. Eight Grade 11 students of Seisho are chosen as participants to visit Thailand every year where they present their science research projects conducted here in Japan in English using slides and poster presentations.
As for Seisho’s visit to Thailand, Seisho students were invited to present their research at two scientific conferences, the TJ-SSF in 2015 and TJ-SIF in 2016, which were supported by 12 Princess Chulaborn Science High Schools (PCSHS). In 2018, another TJ-SSF was held in Phisanulok in the northern part of Thailand. These international conferences invite Super Science High Schools throughout Japan which tie their sister school relationship with PCSHS. Seisho is one of these schools.
Every February, we, at Seisho, welcome and host eight students and four teachers from PCSHSNST. We began our homestay program in 2017. It is a great opportunity for both PCSHSNST and Seisho students. The students also attend the Seisho Science Research Presentation conference and present their research in English. To help them understand the Japanese projects, every research team selected as a representative is required to prepare an English abstract. This research exchange program enhance students’ English abilities and motivates them to study English to be leaders in science in the future.
Through this partnership project, our friendship is being strengthened year by year. We hope our relationship will take a significant role in the building of a strong bond between Thailand and Japan.