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The Private Sakuragaoka Girl's High School (私立(しりつ)桜が丘(さくらがおか)女子(じょし)高等学校(こうとうがっこう) Shiritsu Sakuragaoka Joshi Koutou Gakkou), sometimes abbreviated as Sakura High ((さくら)(こう) Sakura Kou) is a fictional Japanese high school and the main setting of the series K-ON!.

About[]

Like other high schools in Japan, the Sakuragaoka High School is divided into three year groups of students and represents the last stage of Japan's education via public schools. The students are taught in several complex subjects to be able to attend the country's universities afterwards.

Structure and Organization[]

The Sakura High is an all-girl school school led by its headmaster Yoji Okiyama.

Classes are structured with numbers that are attached to the year group. There are five classes per year group with an average of 30-40 students.[1] The students are assigned to their courses with the principle of contingency. The results are published on boards in the hallway at the start of each school year.[2][3]

According to the typical Japanese school year structure, students are 15 years old when entering as freshmen and 18 when graduating as seniors. Underclassmen are required to address upperclassmen as senpai.

Sakuragaoka's winter school uniform consists of a navy blue blazer, a solid white buttoned shirt (under the blazer), a colored year-dependent ribbon, a light steel blue skirt, black or white stockings or socks, white with colored year-dependent tipped shoes inside the school and maroon outdoor (non athletic) shoes. The summer uniform replaces the blazer with a beige vest. Physical education requires a tracksuit (sport jacket with long pants) with white striped brims, a white shirt with colored endings for the summer semester, and white sports shoes. The color of the uniform's ribbon, the indoor shoes' tip, and the tracksuit depend on the year group the related student belongs to. Students are also issued blue school bags.

The school uses three colors (blue, red, and green), to identify each student group. A student will retain the color they got as a freshman until they graduate (unless they are held back at which point they will change color). Upon graduation, the color will be recycled to the incoming freshman.

The courses taught cover the main required subject matter with greater difficulty as the students progress. Sometimes, instead of lessons, the students are tasked to learn independently in the study halls.[4] Eventually, the students have to undergo several exam periods where the subjects are tested. During exam periods, club activities are prohibited.[5] Sakuragaoka uses a form of the no-pass no-play system, as such, students who fail either mid-term or final exams are prohibited from extracurricular school activities until the student is able to pass either a make-up exam or the next exam period. [6]

Even though the school is only accessible for female students, male teachers are part of the school's teaching faculty. Besides teaching, the teachers are also tasked with other organizational duties like helping school clubs as an adviser or planning the school marathon.[7] The teacher faculty's obverse is the student council, which voluntarily helps the school organize certain subjects. The student council is led by its president which also acts as student representative.

The school has certain traditions. At the start of each school year, the students assemble in the auditorium to sing the school anthem. Once a year, the school organizes a school marathon where every student has to participate. At the end of summer, the school also hosts a school festival, where each class and club can deliver a performance of any kind. The school is open for guests during the festival. At the end of each school year, the seniors graduate unless they repeat the last year. The graduation ceremony is held at the auditorium. Before the student representative presents the valedictory, each senior gets decorated with a cherry blossom, handed over by a second-year student.[8]

Like other Japanese schools, Sakura High offers its students to gather together in clubs. A club's topic can be anything possible, be it about a certain kind of sports, about music or mysteries. The clubs have to be officially accepted by the faculty office to be listed by the student council. Each club needs a president and a teacher as an adviser.[9] The school offers each club a budget and the opportunity to hold activities after the lessons have ended. However, the school topics are still superior to club activities.[10] Some clubs differ from others in their primary purpose. An example would be the Mio Akiyama Fan Club, which is about a particular person's fandom.

Known Clubs[]

  • Abacus Club
  • Art Club
  • Athletics Club
  • Badminton Club
  • Basketball Club
  • Baton Club
  • Brass Band
  • Chinese Poetry Club
  • Choir Club
  • Comedy Study Group
  • Drama Club
  • Ikebana Club
  • Football Club
  • Gardening Club
  • Go Club
  • Horror Study Group
  • Jazz Research Department
  • Judo Club
  • Karate Club
  • Kendo Club
  • Lacrosse Club
  • Light Music Club
  • Literature Club
  • Magic Club
  • Mio Akiyama Fan Club
  • Movie Research Department
  • Newspaper Club
  • Occult Club
  • Othello Club
  • Photography Club
  • Shigin Club
  • Softball Club
  • Swimming Club
  • Table Tennis Club
  • Green Tea Ceremony Club
  • Tennis Club
  • Volleyball Club
  • Yearbook Club

Building[]

The Sakura High is a large building with two main floors and a third one that contains the music room and an entrance to the roof. Several cherry blossom trees can be seen throughout the school grounds, hence the school's name. In front of the main entrance, a fountain with a statue of a dolphin and two children is placed. Several other statues can be seen on the school grounds, the most prominent of them is the bust of a man, probably the school founder. The school's stairs are decorated with small statues of turtles. The school also has a library, a gymnasium and an auditorium.

Gallery[]

Trivia[]

The old Toyosato Elementary building, the school Sakuragaoka High is based on.

  • The school is based, both externally and internally, on the old Toyosato Elementary School building, which was built in 1937 and used until 2004 when the school moved to a new building, and the existing building was preserved at the request of the town's residents. Even the bronze tortoise and hare seen on the staircases of Sakuragaoka are a feature of the real school as well.
  • On July 27th, 2010 Japan Post released a postage stamp set of Toyosato Elementary. The pictures clearly reference K-ON!, mainly featuring locations often seen in the show, including a table set with sweets, tea, a music stand, and even Azusa's cat ears, and another featuring a Gibson Les Paul in heritage cherry sunburst, just like Yui's beloved "Giita".
  • The bust in front of the school is often decorated with different hats or glasses, appearing as a running gag.
  • Located nearby is another school called Hikarigaoka High School, which is the main setting for the spin-off series K-ON! Shuffle.

References[]

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