Japan’s first esports high school

In a world where esports are becoming increasingly popular, Japan is finally joining them by founding its first esports... Maria | 1. March 2023

In a world where esports are becoming increasingly popular, Japan is finally joining them by founding its first esports institute.

The institute was founded by Japanese gaming professionals and is the first in the country. With the help of the Japanese government, the institute hopes to create a better understanding of esports in Japan and promote its growth in the region.

Japan’s first esports high school

The academy was created to meet the growing demand for professional gamers worldwide. It combines traditional classroom instruction with hours of intense video game training. However, educators believe they have found something more valuable: a strategy to attract students back into the classroom who no longer want to attend traditional schools.

When educators first realized that more than 1% of elementary and junior high school children had dropped out in the early 1990s, “school refusal,” or chronic absenteeism often linked to anxiety or bullying, became a hot topic in Japan. Since then, the percentage has more than doubled.

Although other nations like the United States have reported higher absenteeism rates, direct comparisons are difficult because of different definitions.

Japanese schools can seem like hostile environments for children who don’t fit in. There is a lot of academic and peer pressure to fit in. In difficult situations, schools have mandated that students dye their brown hair black to match that of other students or have specified the color of their underwear.

esports high school japan


Fight against social rejection

According to Keiko Nakamura, associate professor of psychology at Tohoku Fukushi University, the lack of school psychologists, social workers, and counselors worsens the situation. Along with their other responsibilities, teachers must fulfill these roles.

Education professionals have experimented with many strategies, including distance learning, as they work to overcome school rejection. Tokyo announced in December that it would launch a school in the metaverse. The advertising images looked like something straight out of a Japanese role-playing game.

Parents who can do so have started attending private schools, including so-called free schools, which strongly emphasize socialization and allow children to design their curriculum. However, most of the students at the esports high school came on their own.

It seemed like a possible haven to them. But it was a last resort for their parents. The school went out of its way to ease parents’ concerns once it realized it was reaching an unanticipated group of truants.

Study plans

The school’s curricula meet national educational standards, according to a PowerPoint presentation shown at a February 2022 information session. Administrators also addressed issues such as video game addiction and the future of professional gamers.

The weekly curriculum is divided as follows:

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, teachers teach students competitive tactics for popular video games such as Fortnite and VALORANT.

Students study fundamental subjects such as algebra, biology, and English on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Classes started at 10 o’clock, later than typical Japanese schools, with no uniforms.

Although consumers prefer single-player games in Japan, esports has never really taken hold; the Japan Esports Institute is a groundbreaking initiative that will undoubtedly impact the industry.