HUSKY EXPRESS Feb 17, 2020


 Administration Corner 

  Head of School    

Health-Related Updates & Preparations
[Updated for the Week of Feb 19] 

Dear Husky Community 

In the news and from government authorities there are wider indications that we should prepare for a wider coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak in Japan. 

Ahead of such a situation, I would like to provide the additional health update to our community: 

  1. Continue to wash your hands frequently and follow cough etiquette (coughing into your elbow or a handkerchief). 
  2. Ensure you and your family and our community are are at its best in terms of health: 
    • Please take the temperature of your child(ren) daily before sending them to school 
    • Ensure appropriate sleep 
    • Maintain good exercise routines 
    • Maintain a balanced, healthy diet 
    • Ensure appropriate temperatures and humidity levels in indoors and routinely vent rooms by opening windows 
    • Ensure your and your family are appropriately dressed for the weather 
    • Do not come or send your child to school if they have a fever of 37.5ºC or above 
    • Any diagnosis of flu or Covid 19 should be documented and reported to the school 
  3. An important note regarding attendance and academics: 
    • HIS never has and never will apply academic consequences for illness. 
  4. Important Note: In the event that the government closes schools, we will provide as much learning online as is possible.
    • Using our very generous makeup policy, e-submissions and re-submission policies, HIS would ensure that learning would be continued and grades would not be impacted. 

The staff and faculty will be discussing our response plans to a potential Covid19 outbreak at our main meeting tomorrow. 

We appreciate your reading these many notes and thank you again as a community for working so closely with us as we move forward. 

Sincerely yours,
School Administration 

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. Testing will begin next week on Tuesday, February 25th and continue until Spring Break.

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 excited to see our Visual Art students practice the virtue of self discipline and excellence while learning the craft of still-life sketching. Our students are producing amazing replications. I am excited to see the MP3 students checking out book after book from our school library. I am excited to see the MP1 students working on their presentation skills. I am excited to see the Early Years students appreciate the art of storytelling. 
Thank you teachers for your dedication and hard work. 

Niseko Town Ski Festival
Please allow me to give a heartfelt appreciation to the fine people of Niseko Town Council. Please also allow me to thank Ms. Anita Churiki for providing all the logistical help in preparing our students and teachers to have a great day!
Each year for over 60 years, Niseko Town Ski Festival is organized by the town. 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.

Yesterday’s ski festival was an absolute joy. The HIS Niseko students were able to learn alongside our friends from the Niseko schools. The volunteer instructors were extremely hospitable. The corn soup provided by the Lion’s Club was a lovely treat.

In short, one truly great day!

Welcome NEWBIES!
We are excited and happy to have so many seasonal school students this winter season. On Thursday morning, we had an assembly to welcome our new students. It was an opportune time to remind all students that they are responsible for their own learning, that they are the focus in the classroom, that they are valued as humans and as learners, that their actions affect everyone else in the school.

Please allow me to formally welcome, Sydney- Rey, Winston, Dylan, Jaden, Shaun, Andrew, Daniel, Tom and Samuel and their families to the HIS Niseko community of learners. We are glad you are here.

PTA LINE update for newly arriving families

LINE lets you share photos, videos, voice messages, contacts, and location information in the moment. HIS Niseko started an informational group via Line. The Head of School, Niseko teachers and parents of HIS Niseko students are invited to join.
To receive an invite, please download the Line App via your smartphone. send a friend request to Barry Mernin.
I will then send you an invitation to join HIS Niseko PTA group.
Please see me on any morning if you have any problems joining.

Upcoming Dates:

  • Feb.26 Early Years visit to Ohisama
  • Feb 28 Ski Day at Annupuri
  • Mar 3 PTA Meeting
  • Mar 4 Mummy and Me
  • Mar 5 MP1-MP3 Writing Celebration
  • Mar 5 International Read Aloud

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 25 - March 13 - MAP Testing grades 4 to 11
Feb 27-28 High School Overnight (Jozankei) - Grades 9-12
Feb 27-28 Middle School Overnight (Takino) - Grades 6-8
March 14th - SAT with Essay and SAT without Essay only (No Subject Tests)
March 8-17 Junior Service Trip to Myanmar Cancelled
March 16-20 Spring Break
March 25-28 Grade 9 Kyoto Trip
April 11 Spring Bazaar
April 13 School Holiday
April 14 End of 3rd Quarter
April 24 HIS Reads Finals
April 24 Sports Award Banquet
May 2nd - SAT with Essay, SAT without Essay, and SAT Subject Tests offered on this date
May 4-5 Golden Week
May 29 Annual Music Performance at Kitara
June 4-5 MP3 Overnight to Jozankei / MP1 & MP2 Day Trips
June 6th - SAT Subject Tests only (No SAT with Essay or SAT without Essay).
June 10 MS / HS Sports Day
June 11-12 Middle School Overnight
June 15-16 Soranuma (Juniors)
June 15-16 Niseko (Freshmen and Sophomores)
June 18 Last Day of School (Half Day) Afternoon Graduation
June 19 Teacher Last Day


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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