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February 2002

The president of Japan's Church and Home Educators Association reports more and more families becoming involved in home schooling

Home School Legal Defense Association has watched God expand the freedoms of families across the United States in the last two decades. Now the home schooling movement is spreading to other nations including Japan, where more and more parents are becoming involved in home education.

Recently, HSLDA received the following e-mail report from Hiro Inaba, the president of Church and Home Educators Association (CHEA) of Japan.

Dear Chris,

How are you? I really appreciate your mail. Praise the Lord!

I came back from Japan yesterday night. The seminars were blessed very well. For the final camp, Christian school and homeschooling seminars, 150 people attended, even though we tried to recruit 40 people. (Including 39 children. It will cost $300 per person. As they gathered from throughout Japan, many families needed to pay $3000 or $4000 for air and train tickets. It means that they are so hungry and serious about this movement.) As for other seven seminars, also 140-250% more people attended than the pastors expected before the seminar. The speakers speech were excellent. But for me, the high lights were that 5 homeschoolers presented their testimonies boldly. It was the historical incidents since this movement started two years before. There were the first homeschoolers generation like Yoshi family, Abe family and a few others, which they started 10 years before independently. However, the four families which presented their testimonies in the camp were the groups, so called the second waves, which have launched through this movement from two years before.

Tsuneki family (Magazine 4) started homeschooling smoothly with the understanding about Biblical meaning. Mrs. Tsuneki was a former elementary school's teacher and she knew about school.

After one year prayer, Mrs. Shinohara got approval from her husband, who were strongly against homeschooling. Mr. Shinohara (Magazine 4) changed his mind at CHEA Convention on last March, after he saw homeschoolers (about 20 Japanese homeschooling children) in the convention as the fruit of this movement. He was against to raise children purely Christian circumstances, but he changed his mind that children should be raised purely biblical circumstances to build strong roots in Christ to be strong salt and lights in the world. Mrs. Shinohara shared her struggle through one year experience with homeschooling, but she strongly convinced that her children raised through Christianly. Her family tie in Christ including the relationship with her husband have been dramatically strengthened.

Mari Noto was a single mother as her husband passed away by cancer. She decided to start homeschooling but her school and educational committee board against her strongly. After the four months debate, last September, she won the right to start the homeschooling. For 4 months homeschooling life, she found the meaning and joy to be a true parent and to raise her daughter in Christ firmly as a disciple of Jesus.

Akiko Ogawara, who became Christian two years ago also received her vision to start homeschooling in Japan. Her son and daughter became serious disease and almost died. Those incidents convinced her to do home schooling to build up the faith in Jesus to her children. She did the homeschooling during the last summer vacation and the children loved homeschooling. However, there is still obstacle. Her husband was still a seeker. She has prayed a lot. Her husband admitted to send them to Christian school but not homeschooling. The audience prayed for her.

Those are the one of new home schoolers in Japan.

Chris, they need your encouragement and your knowledge. I really appreciate and praise the Lord after reading your mail. Dan Iverson's seminar was my first seminar on November. He supported my session strongly. And your church has supported him and you spoke at your church!

We have been prayed for two years for you. During these years, 4,000 telephone calls and mails came to our office for homeschooling and Christian school. We are releasing monthly news letter to 1,200 people and churches and 5,000 copies of homeschooling magazine throughout Japan. Still it is not explosion. But little by little, God is working and fulfilling His promise. We still need your help.

May God richly bless you!

In Him,
Hiro Inaba

 Other Resources

Home Schooling in Japan