HUSKY EXPRESS Feb 10, 2020


 Administration Corner 

  Head of School    

Health-Related Updates & Preparations

[Updated for the Week of Feb 10] 


 As we continue to monitor the Coronavirus situation around the world, we would ask our families to daily keep their eye on the school website for updates a look for potential announcements from the school via ALMA. 

 To date, the school has set up five hand sanitation stations across the school in preparation for the potential threat of the Coronavirus. Alcohol pumps were placed at the entry to the school, on the second and third-floor hallways (midway) and one outside the entry to the gymnasium. 

 In reviewing our pandemic response protocols, we are aware that we are somewhere between Level 1 and Level 2 of those protocols. We continue to monitor the situation, are in daily communication with Japan Council of International Schools and are committed to responding in a balanced and appropriate fashion with the information provided to us by governmental authorities (the US State Department included) and other agencies. 

 HIS also receives daily updates from the AAIE (Association for the Advancement of International Education), which provides information based upon WHO reports and Johns Hopkins reports. 

 This week (Feb. 10), the Leadership Team met to again review the school’s protocols and to update them in some areas. At the dormitory, we have now asked students to avoid the downtown area and to wear masks when encountering outside groups. We continue to remind students that proper handwashing is perhaps the most important preventative measure and we encourage families to have these conversations as well. New cleaning routines remain in force in classrooms as well. 

 In Connection to the Coronavirus, HIS is taking the following precautions: 

  • Food stockpiles in the dorm have been increased 
  • N95 Masks are not in stock in the office
  • Any incoming students from Wuhan would be asked to be on a two-week home quarantine to ensure they are virus-free before attending school (no applicants at this point) - Common to all JCIS schools.
  • The above will be reviewed and updated and may be extended to all students coming from China, should the virus spread. 
  • Would review the Kyoto trip should travel restrictions be suggested by government authorities. 
  • We continue to work with Habitat for Humanity regarding our planned trip to Myanmar. 
  • We ask that families who are in regular contact with the public, that should they come down with flu symptoms, that they immediately see a doctor confirm they are virus-free before sending their children to school. 
  • If anyone in the school community does (in the future) come into contact with a Coronavirus patient, we would ask that they suspend school attendance until they have a doctor’s diagnosis that they are virus-free, or, they have been through a 2-week period of self-imposed quarantine. 

We leave you with a very helpful and balanced article, published in the Washington Post (provided by AAIE): 

An Expert on Coronavirus


School Counselor  

HIS has secured a contract with a US-trained counselor who for this school year comes to HIS on a monthly basis. The counselor’s schedule is booked for this month and next month. If you would like to book a weekend session(usually Saturdays or Sundays at school) for your child to see the counselor, please contact either Administrative Assistant, Mr. Tawaraya; HoS, Mr. Ratzliff or Principal, Mr. Cooke.

  From the Principal’s Office  

Spring Bazaar is coming up!
Please stand by for information about the upcoming Spring Bazaar. An email will come home shortly. There are many ways for the whole community to get involved!

“Spring” MAP Testing
Please note the next session of MAP testing is coming up for students between grade 4 and grade 11. Details will be sent out in the coming week.

SAT Exam Schedule - Semester 2
If you are a first time SAT taker, you will need to set up a College Board account to register. Please come to see me if you have any questions.

  • March 14th - SAT with Essay and SAT without Essay only (No Subject Tests).
  • May 2nd - SAT with Essay, SAT without Essay, and SAT Subject Tests offered on this date.
  • June 6th - SAT Subject Tests only (No SAT with Essay or SAT without Essay).

Next PTA Meeting
Looking forward to seeing parents at the next PTA meeting this week on Wednesday, February 5th, from 15:45 in Room 206. Please let me know if you need a babysitter so one can be arranged.

Babysitters and Tutors
Any family looking for a babysitter or a tutor is welcome to contact me. From time to time, students are looking to make some extra money after school.  I have a list of some students who are interested in finding out about babysitting or tutoring opportunities in the HIS community. Please contact me at

 Greetings from the Executive Board 

Notices from the Executive Board:

Outgoing EB Chair:
November 30, 2019

Dear HIS Community,
It is with regret that I am writing to inform you of my decision to resign my position on the HIS Executive Board, effective immediately.
Although I have only been Executive Board Chair since August 1, 2019, it has been increasingly difficult for me to fulfill the requirements of Executive Board Chair as well as Board member, and I feel it would be best for me to step down from my board responsibilities at this time.
It has been a pleasure being part of the HIS Executive Board and I am honored to have served the HIS community as a Board member these past 5 1/2 years. The experience I earned has been very valuable and I wish the Board and New Chair, Phred Kaufman, the very best.

Warmest regards,
Alan Bossaer

Incoming EB Chair:

Dear Husky Community,
I would like to thank Alan B for all of his hard work on the HIS Board.
I look forward to working with the Executive Board and Administration of the school in ensuring a smooth and positive transition to the new head of school.

Sincerely yours,
Phred Kaufman

If you wish to learn about what the Executive Board is

and what we do, please follow this link to the HIS homepage:
(Governance page is here)
If you wish to read the minutes to our meetings,
to read in detail, what exactly was discussed and decided on,
then follow this link to the HIS homepage minutes archive:
(Minutes Archive is here)

The Executive Board had its annual Scholarship Fundraiser this June. If you wish to see the Final Report,that shows how much money we were able to raise, please find the link to the document here.

 @ Niseko 

Dear Teachers, Staff, Parents and Prospective Parents of HIS Niseko

Our Best Learning of Late:
I am very excited to see the EY students learning about the virtue of love, the MP1 students learning the virtue of teamwork and the MP3 students practice the virtue of excellence.
Outstanding job, students and teachers !
Niseko Town Ski Festival
Each year for over 60 years, Niseko Town Ski Festival is organized by the town. All Elementary and Junior High School students in Niseko are invited. Students are arranged in groups with instructors depending on their skill levels. 5th-9th grade students have the option to go free skiing in multi-aged groups, depending on their skills.
3rd grade and above students can join time trials going through the slalom poles. This program will be held in the morning.
HIS students eat lunch at the restaurant and will be on our own with few instructors from the town in the afternoon.
This a regular start/dismissal day. All students attending the festival must arrive at school before 8:30 so that we can leave the school precisely at 08:30 AM.
The mission of the festival is for the children of Niseko to:

  • Enjoy the culture of skiing
  • Socialise with students from the other Niseko schools.
  • Learn about Niseko’s natural environment

Students need to bring

  • Ski Gear (Skis, Ski boots, Poles, Helmet, Gloves,)
  • Lunch or Money - We will be eating at the restaurant in Moiwa (if bringing money, it should be kept in ski jacket pocket)
  • Water bottle
  • Extra layer of clothes and gloves - we will be on the mountain full day
  • A bag for your lunch and extra clothes
  • Students do not need to bring ski passes, the town will provide

Mummy and Me
Thank you, EY students and Ms. Lola for another wonderful Mummy and Me. This session we hosted 3 younger siblings onto our campus. The EY students enjoy sharing songs and dances with new friends.
Next Mummy and Me is scheduled for March 4.

Ice Sculpture
Thank you Merek Sinclair and Mayo Taniguchi for your incredible HIS Niseko Ice Sculpture. If you are attending tonight’s Scenic Yakiniku and Fireworks Night 2020 in Niseko, please make sure to check it out!

Upcoming Dates:

  • Feb. 14 Town Ski Race Festival

Barry Mernin
Hokkaido International School Niseko

 HIS Parent E-mailing List 


Husky Parents!!
Do you ever have trouble receiving the weekly HEx, Husky-Info bulletins or other school-wide emails?  Do you have another email address to which you’d like to receive these electronic communications? If so, please email us at  or phone the main office so we can update our mailing lists and include you as soon as possible!

 From PTA 

PTA Steering Committee Meetings
Please note, all Steering Committee meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month. Any parent is welcome to attend, and please let Megumi or Neil know if you would like to become a regular (and voting) member of the committee.

PTA Information Website:

 Husky Hugs 

Husky Hugs go out to...

  • Cenobia and supporting teachers for organizing and operating the ski days both last week and this coming week. 
  • Mark and Barry M. who will be accompanying OE students on the upcoming Sapporo Dake trip.


 The Publications & Media class 

This year the students have revived the online student website, www.TheHusky Pulse with lots of new content including artwork from elementary, middle, and high school students, MP3 narratives, high school writings, student articles on HIS events and the Hokkaido outdoors.

Also check out HIS Newscast, a series of quirky video reports created by high school students.

The Husky Pulse, created by students for all to see.


 Upcoming Events 


Upcoming EVENTS

Feb 7 - Semester 1 Report Cards
Feb 11 - Parent-Teacher Conferences


Our enthusiastic HS girls volleyball team has already started their Spring practice sessions under Coach Bossaeur. It is a great time to come along and improve those skills while having some fun with your friends.
All old and especially new players are very welcome.
See Reika or Haru for details of the next practice.

Go Huskies!


If you are an HIS parent and are looking for a babysitter for an evening or on the weekend, please feel free to contact  
Interested HIS parents can then be provided with a list of students available for babysitting.
Also, if you are looking for a student tutor for your child, please contact  

 Concerts You Should Go To! FREE CHILDREN TICKETS TO Theatre Production of
- Poupelle of Chimney Town -

A theatre production of the famous and heartwarming children’s book, Poupelle of Chimney Town. Please read the online version for a closer look at the story:

Dates & Times:

  • Feb. 28 (Fri) 11 am, 3 pm, 7:30 pm
  • Feb. 29 (Sat) 11 am, 3 pm, 7:30 pm
  • Mar. 1 (Sun) 11 am, 3 pm

Hall opens 30 minutes before each performance time.
Program length: About 75 min
Location: Sapporo Children's Theatre Yamabiko-za.
A 5-minute walk from Motomachi Station (Blue line)
Address: Kita 27-jo, Higashi 15 chome, Higashi-ku Sapporo

  • Adults= 4000 yen
  • Students and children= Free!
  • 65 yrs. and older= Free!

Tickets: Available through phone (Japanese) at 090-8270-9565, OR email at (Japanese) or (English)

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