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PreK-Grade 12 International Day and Boarding School in Kobe, Japan | Since 1913


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Opened in 1913, Canadian Academy has long been recognized as a leading international school in Japan.


From our origins on September 13, 1913, Canadian Methodist Academy (CMA) opened its doors to sixteen students in Kobe, originally serving the children of missionary parents. As CMA’s appeal broadened, our name was changed in 1917 to Canadian Academy (CA).

With an expanded student population, land was purchased on Nagamine-yama and a boys’ dormitory, Gloucester House, was dedicated by the Duke of Gloucester in May of 1929. We proudly remain one of the oldest boarding schools in Asia.

Over the years, we continued to grow, and by the 1980s it became clear that more space and newer facilities were needed. Saying good-bye to our home on the hill, we moved to our current campus in September of 1990. 

1913 - Canadian Academy Opens

Canadian Methodist Academy opened in Aotani-cho, Kobe, on 13th September, 1913. Originally a school for the children of Methodist Church missionaries, we opened with 13 students and served children from grade one through high school. Our day/boarding program was one of the first in Asia, continuing to the present day.

1922 - Red & Grey Yearbook Cover

Our yearbook was renamed "Red and Grey" and these were adopted as our school colors, joining our school motto (Scientia Clavis Successus- Knowledge is the Key to Success) and song from 1921.

1929 - Duke of Gloucester at dedication ceremony

Needing more space, land in Nagamine Heights was purchased. Gloucester House was dedicated by and named after The Duke of Gloucester at a ceremony in May of 1929. The Duke unveiled the cairn on the new school site. The cairn can now be found by the current Gloucester House, our boarding house on our current campus.

1933 - Gloucester Boarding House

With the construction of Gloucester House completed in 1933, over the next 60 years thousands of memories and life-long friendships were made within its walls.

1942 - Last Graduating Class Before WWII

Our last formal graduation took place in 1942. The final pre-war Red and Grey was not professionally published but mimeographed with photos stuck in place with photo corners.

1952 - Faculty Returns Post WWII

Campus reopened on September 17th, 1952 with 6 teachers and 110 students. Gloucester House and the principal's residence were the only buildings left after the bombings of Kobe in 1945. Mr Herbert Norman, Class of 1922, became headmaster and was instrumental in the re-opening of CA after the war. 

1966 Opening of Matsushita Gymnasium

In 1966, CA's Matsushita Gymnasium was completed. Previously, all sports were practiced outdoors on the athletic field or concrete courts. Also used as an auditorium, the Class of 1966 was the first class to have its commencement ceremony in the new facility. This gymnasium still stands today on our old campus.

1972 - First Kabuki Performance

Under the guidance of Mitsuko Unno, members of the Japanese culture club presented their first kabuki performance "Tojuro No Koi." Our program introduced thousands to the art of kabuki.

1990 - Rokko Island Campus

Having outgrown our space in Nagaminedai, our campus was located to its current location on Rokko Island. The new school and a new Gloucester House boarding facility opened in September, 1990. On transition day, all students and teachers walked from the Nagamine Heights campus to the new Rokko Island Campus.

1995 - Great Hanshin Earthquake

On January 17, 1995, the Great Hanshin Earthquake struck Kobe. Canadian Academy opened its undamaged facilities for evacuees from the disaster-stricken area. Nearly 3500 people were provided shelter on our campus. We reopened by the end of January with our students returning to classes.

1998 - Formal Service Program

Our students have a long history of volunteering their time and energy to many different causes. Our formal service program was introduced in 1988 and proudly continues at CA with a wide variety of clubs impacting local and international communities.

2008 - Early Learning Activities Center Opens

Our Early Learning Activities Center opened in January, 2008. Providing purpose-built spaces for our youngest students as well as a second gymnasium and our P&G Black Box Theatre for our older students, we are able to more fully meet the growing academic and extracurricular needs of our international and multi-aged students.

2020/21 - Renovation Projects

In the summer of 2020, we began an exciting series of upgrades to ensure that our learning spaces best reflect modern instructional practices and create an optimal environment for teaching and learning at all grade levels. The summer of 2020 saw a major renovation of our library and science spaces, while the summer of 2021 brought us a renewed Atrium, Cafeteria and Gloucester House Boarding.