View previous Bulletins:



The Bulletin       1st March, 2008



Potluck Lunch and Kimono Sale Day!

OIS PTA would like to welcome everyone for a potluck lunch and Kimono sale day. Our teacher, Tomoko Syrad, will bring a selection of Yukatas and some Obis at interesting prices.

Date/Time: Tuesday 11 March, 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Venue: 3F Conference Room

If you want to join, please register with Tenzin Urquhart by email ( or phone (072-727-3409) by Tuesday, March 4th. This event will take place only if a minimum of 10 people register. You will receive more information as to what to bring for the potluck lunch later if this raises enough interest.



Gwyn Underwood

Middle and High School Principal

Last October, all grades 3, 5, 7 and 10 students sat the International Schools Assessment (ISA) standardized test. Results have now been returned to us, and are being sent home with this Bulletin in a separate envelope. Results will be helpful for you as parents to see how your child compares with other international school students from around the world. At the same time, it is very important to remember these results were based on short tests done over two mornings, so are just indicators of levels at that time. A letter explaining the test is included with the results. 

Please note these assessment results are not used in any way to determine students grades at OIS. What we do use them for is to analyse area students at different levels struggled with; compare progress of students over time; compare class progress over time; and compare OIS classes to other classes world wide. All this information provides feedback to help guide teachers in their teaching and with curriculum updating to ensure learning is occurring to desired levels.  

All parents may find some interest in our grade 10 results. The ISA test is administered by the same company that prepares the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Program for International School Assessment (PISA) tests for 15 year-olds around the world (our grade 10). I am pleased to report that, consistent with all previous years, OIS results remain well above the averages of ALL 40 countries participating in the testing. Well done students!



Rod Adam

Elementary School Principal


The Learner Profile for the month of February is the attribute of Balanced. During the past few weeks a number of teachers have mentioned concerns about students not appearing to have had adequate sleep, especially during a season when contagious sickness is prevalent. I, too, have observed children having difficulty concentrating, especially in the afternoon. When I spoke with them, they mentioned that they were very tired. Some had gone to bed as late as 11pm. Although children have varied needs, the general recommendation for pre-school children is 12 15 hours of sleep per night and between 10 and 11 hours for children up to 12 years old.

 When children get enough sleep they:

-     pay better attention in school and remember what they learn

-     are more creative and solve problems more easily

-     are more able to fight sickness

-     are more patient and in a better mood

-     are more proficient at playing games and sports

-     get along better with friends and family

 Please review bedtime at your home to ensure that your child has an appropriate balance of sleep and activity time.



Leanne Entwistle, Elsa Connelly, Alison Jamieson, Jessica Shiffman

Well done OIS Elementary School! On Happy Hat Day in December students raised 25,645 yen. Combined with funds from Wacky Hair Day we have now raised 37,912 yen to support programs at the Sannoh Kodomo Centre. In addition, the special holiday yen drive to support World Vision projects around the world raised 38,194 yen. Thank you for showing your support of these projects! 

On March 11th we will hold a SUPER SPORTS DAY as we continue support the Sannoh Kodomo Center. Donate \100 and wear your favourite sports team uniform or come in sports clothing (such as jerseys, t-shirts or baseball caps; no large pieces of equipment please). Student participation, with parent support, continues our effort to raise money for people less fortunate than ourselves and fosters empathy and cultural awareness.



Eric Zarouba

5th Grade Teacher

The fifth graders are collecting information regarding cigarette smoking in an effort to understand more about its health consequences, the reasons why some people start smoking, and the responsibilities of tobacco companies, their advertisers, the government, and smokers.  

If you smoke, have ever been a cigarette smoker, or know a smoker, please take a few minutes to complete the anonymous survey(s) as this information will help us in our investigation.  

Please have your child return the survey to your homeroom teacher.  

Thank you.



Peter Heimer

IB Coordinator

DP course selection for grade 10 students

Recently, Mr. Heimer has been meeting with the 10th graders once a week, introducing to them the IB diploma programme (DP). These students are in the process of making important, long-lasting decisions about their DP courses; it is imperative that students and parents are well informed. Students should share an informational document with their parents. Parents of grade 10 students, if you havent seen this document, please ask your child. 

DP presentations to parents: March 6 & 8

Parents of grade 9, 10 and 11 students, please note on the school calendar IB Presentation to Parents, Thursday, March 6 and Saturday, March 8. The same presentation will be given twice by Mr. Heimer, on the 6th at 3:45 pm and on the 8th at 10:00 am. 

Sign-up sheets with information about content and times have been sent home with students this week. Please make plans to attend one of these presentations. Students are welcome, too. 

IBDP deadline, final reminder: March 3

Yes, this coming Monday. One last frantic weekend of work for the seniors before they submit English world literature papers, Japanese A2 written tasks, TOK papers, and extended essays. This work will be mailed to IB examiners around the world early next week. 

Grade 11 students will submit maths internal assessment (IA) work and ITGS or history IA work before the spring holiday.



Caroline Rennie

MYP Coordinator

On your school calendar, you will notice IB Presentation to Parents listed for Thur., March 6th (after school) and Sat., March 8th (am). At these times, Mr. Heimer, IB Diploma Coordinator, is offering sessions to high school parents explaining the IB Diploma Programme to help parents and students (especially current grade 10) with course selections for next year. These sessions are followed by a presentation on college applications by Mr. Stenger, Counsellor. I will also be offering sessions at these times on MYP assessment to help grades 6-10 parents understand OIS report cards better. I will be sending a separate letter to parents new to the middle/high school with more details, but all parents are welcome.  


Caroline Rennie

Director of Academic Affairs

End of trimester reports will be written up in the last week of the trimester and mailed home during the first week of spring break. If you do not receive these by Monday, March 24th, please contact the Student Information Centre.  

Just a reminder the end of trimester reports give IB descriptor levels attained in a number of subject domains, without narrative comments. Please take time to discuss the grades with your child, compare the descriptors of levels above and below the level your child attained. These are available either from your child, as most classes will give students a hard copy of the descriptors from their class, or from our OIS community only website. You will need to log into the site first, as these descriptors are copyright, and not for public usage.

Please refer to the hard copy for the user name and the password.

If you think there have been any mistakes, please contact me to check it out, and if you have concerns with your childs performance, please contact the subject teachers.



Simon Parker

Athletic Director

A hugely successful first swim meet here at school was the highlight of this last weekend.

We entertained 2 teams, one from the American School in Japan in Tokyo and the other from KIKUSUI Swim Club in Osaka.  

Details of the meet along with all the other scores from the last couple of weeks can be found at

We are thrilled to be able to report that over 100 students were involved in school sport this past weekend and are hoping that this continues and ask the parents for your continued support in encouraging your children to get involved. 

Several season ending tournaments and other important dates coming up and these are listed here as well as on the webpage. Good luck to all concerned. 

February 29th/March 1st
MS Girls Basketball Tournament @ MBIS
MS Boys Soccer Tournament @ CA

March 1st
SIS HS Graduation

March 7th/8th
HS Boys Soccer Tournament @ CA
HS Girls Soccer Tournament @ NIS

March 15th
All Japan HS Boys Futsal Tournament @ Osaka 



Lyn Melville-Rea

Community Service Coordinator

From March 12-19, students from OIS will join with students at SMK Payangan High School in Bali for cultural and language exchange as well as community service work. 

SMK Payangan is a non-profit school trying to make education affordable to the rural poor. There are 360 students in 7 classrooms with two toilets and 5 old computers (no internet). Currently, OIS faculty and families are sponsoring 25 students at SMK Payangan.   

7000 yen covers basic tuition costs for one student for a whole year!  

If you would like to make a general donation or sponsor students please put your donation in the boxes in the SSC or the faculty lounge. OIS students will present our donation at our farewell ceremony at SMK Payangan on March 18. 

100% of your donation will go directly to children who would have to drop out of school otherwise.  Please look at to read about our projects so far and future plans. 



Leanne Stephen

Art Teacher

You are warmly invited to attend an exhibition of art works by Grade 12 Visual Arts students - Lina Kobayashi, Arisa Nishimura, Alisa Sweet and Hayato Takami. 

When:   Wednesday, April 9, 2008, 5:00 pm 8:00 pm

Where: 3F Conference Room & Theatre 

We look forward to seeing you.



Paul Lindley

Band Director

I never cease to be amazed at the level of commitment and talent that is evident among the music students at OIS/SIS. This is evidenced by the high level of participation and outstanding concerts that are given by students in all performance ensembles.  

Recently I had the opportunity to accompany sixteen of our top wind and percussion players as they traveled to Canadian Academy in Kobe Japan to participate in the annual Asian Pacific Activity Conference Band Festival. In this festival, top music students from all six of the APAC schools join together in what always turns out to be a wonderful experience for all involved. This year was certainly no exception with outstanding works being performed by the group.

Mr. Larry Gookin from Central Washington University endeared himself to the Asian community and quickly won over the hearts of the students in order to put together a memorable performance. Mr. Gookin often commented on the high quality of the student performers and even volunteered to come back in the future as a guest conductor. True to form, the students from OIS/SIS stood out as exceptional musicians and young adults in every way and made a lasting impression on Mr. Gookin. He spoke very highly of their talents and attentive manner during rehearsals and was literally blown away by their superior level of musicianship. 

The finale concert, performed in the Canadian Academy Theater, was well attended and truly outstanding. Many students from OIS/SIS took on leadership roles and played solo parts in the performance. As one of the directors in the audience, I was highly moved by their performance.

Congratulations go out to the following students not only for their selection into this honor group, but for their outstanding contributions to the OIS/SIS Music Program: 

Mai Iida (Flute), Jun Kamei (Flute), Ayaka Sato (Clarinet), Mana Sasaki (Clarinet), Moe Kawamura (Clarinet), Ryoko Yano (Bass Clarinet), Emi Meren (Alto Saxophone), Yuka Matsubara (Tenor Saxophone), Hibiki Takada (Baritone Sax), Akira Moriguchi (Trumpet), Kei Suzuki (Trumpet), Natsuki Sakagami (Horn), Tabatha Johnston, (Horn), Rei Izawa (Trombone), Kenta Sukoda (Trombone), Tsugumi Ishihara (Euphonium), Shunsuke Kiuchi (Tuba)  

In closing, I commend the parents, staff and administration for supporting these students in all of their many endeavors both inside and outside the classroom. Kudos to all of the musicians in the music department. Please mark your calendar to hear future student performances. 

May 1st  - Spring Music Recital at 4:00 pm in the School Theater

June 10th - High School Spring Concert at 6:30 pm in Mino City Maple Hall

June 18th -  Band School Spring Concert at 4:00 pm in the School Theater

June 19th - Orchestra and Choral Spring Concert at 4:00 pm in the School Theater



The deadline for the T-shirt Design Competition has been extended until after spring break, Friday, April 25. 

The theme has been simplified: SOIS Friendship with a Cultural Twist

 So start thinking and drawing. OIS PTA will be updating the prizes list.



Jim Schell

Business Manager

We are now accepting applications for financial aid for the 2008-2009 school year, which commences on August 27. 

Please contact Jim Schell directly, or drop by the Business Office to pick up an application.

The deadline for application is Friday, May 9, 2008.



Tuesday, August 26, 2008

MS/HS Orientation Day 

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

MS/HS classes begin.

ES Orientation Day 

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Elementary classes begin.

Parents are asked to plan holidays around these dates, and not miss days as this has a negative impact on their child socially and academically, as well on other students and the teachers.



Jim Schell

Business Manager

All American citizens are welcome to attend a presentation about the services provided by the American Citizen Services (ACS) section of the US Consulate in Osaka.  

Presentation will be on March 3rd at 3:45 pm in the 3F Conference Room. 


Vittoria Coffee for Sale

John Kellett is currently clearing stock of Vittoria Coffee, Australias No. 1 coffee brand. Prices are give away JPY400 / kg or JPY1,000 / 3kg. There is only one type of packaging available whole Italian roasted beans in 1 kg packs.   

Please e mail with your order and coffee will be on hand for pick up at the Kellett residence between 3.30 5.00 pm on Tuesday, March 11. If you wish to arrange a different pick up time please email. Please bring the exact amount of cash to exchange when coffee is picked up.

 The Kellett residence is 2 minutes walk from the school in the old Hankyu neighborhood.

The house is next to the park near the water tower, backing on to the bamboo forest (Onohara-nishi 4-9-4).


Learn and Practice Yoga at Home

Original DVD Yog Science Parts 1 & 2 by Swami Ramdev, a renowned yogi from India.

65 min of Pranayama (Breathing Exercise)

65 min of Yog Aasan (Postures)

Total Play Time: 130 minutes.

Languages: English / Hindi

Price: 2,000 yen

 Please call or email to Tenzin Urquhart for purchasing. Only a few left!

Tel: 072-727-3409,




MARCH 3 14

Lost & Found Display @ 2F Showcase Area 


PTA Meeting 


OIS/SIS HS Student Council Cleaning Day 


DP & MYP Presentation to Parents 


DP & MYP Presentation to Parents 

MARCH 12 -14

MS/HS Spring Camp 


Winter Trimester Ends (Half Day of School for ES) 


Spring Break 


Spring Trimester Begins  



ES students will be dismissed at 11:30 am.

MS/HS students will be dismissed directly from each camp.


School Buses

March 12 & 13: Operated as usual

March 14:

All school buses will be operated as usual to school.

They will depart at 11:45 am from school.

Public Bus will depart at 12:03.



March 12: Closed at 12:15 (Last order by 12:00)

March 13 & 14: Closed at 1:00 pm 



March 10: Open as usual

March 11: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm (No extended opening)

March 12 - March 14: Closed for inventory

March 17 - April 1: Closed

April 2 -: Open as usual 



MONDAY, March 3 Hamburger


TUESDAY, March 4 Spaghetti with Meat Sauce


WEDNESDAY, March 5 Pork Cutlet


THURSDAY, March 6 Udon (Japanese Wheat Noodle)


FRIDAY, March 7 Fried Chicken


MONDAY, March 10 Spaghetti with Basil and Tomato


TUESDAY, March 11 Fried Rice with Roast Pork


WEDNESDAY, March 12 Beef Cutlet


THURSDAY, March 13 Chinese Noodle Soup


WEDNESDAY, April 2 Hamburger


THURSDAY, April 3 Chinese Noodle Soup


FRIDAY, April 4 Fried Chicken


MONDAY, April 7 Hash & Rice


TUESDAY, April 8 Spaghetti with Meat Sauce


WEDNESDAY, April 9 Rice Bowl with Chopped Chicken & Egg Topping


THURSDAY, April 10 Udon (Japanese Wheat Noodle)


FRIDAY, April 11 Pork Cutlet



Karin Caffin, Head 072-727-5080

Gwyn Underwood, MS/HS Principal 072-727-5050

Rod Adam, ES Principal 072-727-5050

Patrick Stenger, Counselor 072-727-5061

Mike McGill, Admissions Director 072-727-5070

Jim Schell, Business Manager 072-727-5084

Peter Heimer, IB Coordinator 072-727-5290

Student Attendance 072-727-2305


Contact usus via e-mail

*For direct e-mail, all faculty have e-mail addresses with their first name initial and family name @

For example: If a faculty member had the name John Smith, his school e-mail address would be: