Todai, the University of Tokyo, has plans to shift the beginning of the academic year from spring to the fall. The enrollment start date will remain in April, while classes begin in September, giving students a summer vacation. While this will make the school’s scheduling more compatible with colleges around the globe, parents aren’t so sure about the idea.
The decision has already been approved by an in-house panel on enrollment system reform. Currently, there are more plans set to take place within the school and a final plan will be presented to university President Junichi Hamada, hopefully by March. The University’s new system could launch as early as April 2014 of the academic year. A senior official from a school also known as Todai said, “Starting classes in September would make a shifting enrollment to the fall easier in the future.” Although popular with other schools like Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo Institute of Technology and Waseda University, parents are concerned with what to do with their children during the break between high school graduation and starting college. Nearly 40% of parents with children up to 18 years old expressed opposition in a survey given by a test-coaching company. One parent said that were concerned with the availability of jobs available for new graduates in the fall and also wouldn’t know what to let children do during the time off.
Students who enroll in April will be able to take “fresh programs” until May. The period between June and August will allow students a summer vacation which students can take special lectures, study abroad or take part in volunteer programs. The new enrollment plan aims to help all Japanese universities to remain internationally relevant.