Childbirth, Raising Children and Education



* When you become pregnant, and your pregnancy is confirmed by a doctor, report it to the Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office of your Ward Office or Branch Office, and receive a Mother and Child Health Handbook.   
* During pregnancy, you can get maternity health checks (Ninpu Kenshin) at a clinic or a hospital that has an obstetrics department.   
* With your Mother and Child Health Handbook, you will receive Jyushin-ken Checkup coupons for maternity health check-ups that will help with the cost of health check fees.   
* The Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office at your Ward Office or Ward Branch Office issues the Mother and Child Health Handbook. You will have a consultation with a public health nurse on health issues when you receive this handbook. For those who are pregnant for the first time, a public health nurse or other personnel will visit your house to give you advice and answer your questions.

The Mother and Child Health Handbook

This handbook plays an important role in protecting the health of mothers and children. If you are pregnant, you can receive the Mother and Child Health Handbook at the Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office of your Ward Office.
English, Chinese and Korean versions of the handbook are also available.
You can keep a record of your own health as well as your baby’s health in this handbook. You can also keep the record of vaccinations in this handbook. Please be sure to take it with you whenever you visit a hospital or the Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office.


Expectant mothers in Japan usually give birth either at a hospital or a maternity clinic.
After the delivery, a public health nurse or other personnel from the Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office will visit the mother’s home and advise her about childrearing.

What to do after your baby is born?

① Obtain a birth certificate from the hospital
② Report the child’s birth by taking the birth certificate to the ward office and filing the Birth Registration form within 14 days after the birth.
※ If one or both parents are foreign nationals, it is necessary to also report the birth of their child to their embassy or consul general.
③ Special Permanent Residents must obtain the status of Special Permanent Resident for their child at the Ward Office.
④ In case of medium and long term residents, bring the child’s Birth Registration Certificate or Resident Certificate to the immigration office to get the status of residence for your child.
(If your baby is supposed to stay in Japan for 60 days or longer, you must finish the procedure within 30 days after birth.)

* Obtain a passport for your baby at your embassy or the consulate. Enroll your baby in your health insurance system as a dependent.   
* Take your child for regular medical check-ups.   
* Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office at your Ward Office or Ward Branch Office offer health checks and vaccinations to infants for free.


Lump-sum Allowance for Childbirth

A person enrolled in medical insurance will receive a lump-sum allowance for childbirth after giving birth to a child. Pregnant mothers become eligible after 84 days, even if the mother later has a miscarriage or stillbirth.
For the National Health Insurance System, those who are eligible for the Maternity Medical Compensation Policy will receive 420,000 yen for delivery. Those who are not eligible for this program will receive 404,000 yen.

Mother and Child Health Interpretation Dispatch Service

For parents of infants and young children with health check appointments, who are foreign nationals and do not feel able to converse with public health nurses in Japanese, this administrative interpreting service is available. Please consult the Public Health & Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office at your ward or branch ward office for more information.

「Child-rearing Handbook in Kyoto」

We compiled useful information for mothers and fathers who are giving birth and raising children in Kyoto.

Child-rearing Handbook in Kyoto(PDF)

Assistance for families with young children

Medical cost reduction program for children

With this program, you will pay only 200 yen per month per medical institution for children ages 0 to 3rd year of middle school, who received medical care while hospitalized.   
For outpatient treatment for children younger than two years, you will pay only 200 yen per month per medical institution. For children between the ages of three and 3rd year of middle school, you will pay only up to 3,000 yen per month per medical institution. If the total medical fees exceed 3,000 yen in a month, you can submit an application and once accepted the program will reimburse the amount exceeding 3,000 yen.


Child Allowance (Jidou-ate)

A parent or parents raising children under Junior High Year 3 (16 years old) can qualify for monetary support (Child Allowance).
※ For further information, visit Child and Family Support Section TEL:075-251-1123 or Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office at your Ward Office and Ward Branch Office.

Support Program for Single Parents (for single mothers or fathers henceforth written as single parent households)

* If you are suffering financial hardship, the city offers a loan (Boshi Fushi Kafu Fukushi Shikin)
* There are computer classes and other classes to acquire skills necessary for work available
* You will receive priority in the public housing program.
* Medical expenses are partly covered by the city (Hitori-oya Katei tou Iryohi Shikyu Seido)
* Child Care Allowance is provided
There are also some other forms of assistance for single parents.

Counseling on raising children

◆ Child Welfare Center
Tel:075-801-2929 (open Mon-Fri 8:00 to 17:00)
◆ Public Health and Welfare Center Childrearing Support Office at your Ward Office and Ward Branch Office
(open Mon-Fri 8:30 to 17:00)

Child-Care Service (Hoikusho)

Child daycare centers accept children younger than elementary school age. The fee is determined by family income.

● Eligibility for Child-care services
This service is available for parents who cannot take care of their children, because of work, study or illness.

● How to Apply
Submit documents proving your eligibility, such as working certificate, student ID, etc., and if you were not a resident of Kyoto City as of January 1, 2017, you must show a tax payment certificate. Please bring these documents to the Public Health and Welfare Center at your Ward Office or Ward Branch Office.


Play Centers for Children (Jido-kan, Gakudo-club etc.)

◆ Children’s Centers (Jido-kan)
Open from 10:00 to 18:30 (Closed on Sun, National Holidays and New Year holidays)
Children up to 18 years old together with their parents or guardians can use these facilities to play games and sports for free.

◆ Gakudo-Club
This program aims at the safety and healthy growth of those children in the lower grades of elementary school whose parents are not at home during the daytime. This program is conducted at Jido-kan and Gakudo child-care centers. Children can participate in this program after school. In order to use this program, one must apply in advance.
* Child Development Promotion Section (Ikusei Suishin-ka) Tel:075-746-7610

◆ Childcare Station “Hotto Chat” for mothers and fathers
For parents raising children in Kyoto, foreign residents and Japanese citizens alike, it is okay to bring your child with you.
Time and Date: 1st Sat and the 3rd Tues of every month 14:00 -15:30   
Venue: Room on 3rd Floor of kokoka Kyoto International Community House

◆ koko kids
Education Support for Children: Japanese language support for studies at school and homework. Playtime is available to make this program an enjoyable experience for children.
Date: 1st Sat and 3rd Tues of every month 15:30-17:00   
Location: Volunteer Room 3rd Floor of kokoka Kyoto International Community House

◆ Kyoto City Childrearing Support Center “Kodomo Mirai-kan”
Is a free facility with a large-size playground equipment in the Kodomo Genki Land area (for children who have not entered elementary school accompanied by a parent or guardian) and a children’s library full of pictures to enjoy at the Kosodate Tosho-kan.
Open: Kodomo Genki Land Weekdays 9:00-18:00, Weekends&Holidays 9:00-17:00   
Children’s Library (Kosodate Toshokan) Weekdays 9:30-20:30, Weekends&Holidays 9:30-17:00   
Closed: Tuesday ( if a national holiday occurs on a Tuesday then the facility will be closed the following weekday)and the new year holiday period

◆ Kyoto University of the Art, Art&Culture Information Center Piccoli
This is a free facility that anyone can use. There are picture books and children’s literature related materials, there are also books written in English. There are readings and craft activities held and children may play with the facility’s toys.
Open: Thursday- Saturday 10:30-18:00, Sunday 10:30-17:00   
Closed: Monday-Wednesday, and during university functions

◆ Other
There are often events, including picture book readings, held at Kyoto City libraries. Please check with your local library for details ⇒here




Japanese Education System

In Japan, the education system is comprised of six years of elementary school, three years of junior high school, three years of senior high school, and 4 years of University (2 years of junior college). Elementary through junior-high school education is compulsory.
In principle to enter senior high school and university, one must pass an entrance examination. In addition, there are some vocational schools which target junior and senior high school graduates.
There are national schools managed by the state; public schools managed by prefectures, cities, wards, towns and villages; and private schools managed by school foundations. The school year starts in April and ends in March the following year.


Children between the ages of three to six are eligible for kindergartens.

◆ City Kindergartens
The City of Kyoto operates 15 kindergartens which accept children between the age four and five from April 1 (some kindergartens also accept 3 year-olds). The area in which you live determines which Kindergartens are possible to enroll your child in.
* School Guidance Section of the Secretariat of Board of Education Tel:075-222-3806

◆ Private Kindergartens
* Kyoto City Private Kindergartens Association (Kyoto-shi Shiritsu Youchien Kyokai) Tel:075-257-0375
* Kyoto Prefectural Private Kindergartens Federation (Kyoto-fu Shiritsu Yochien Renmei) Tel:075-344-0771
★ The following website provides information on private kindergartens located in Kyoto. see here.

Elementary and Junior High Schools

◆How to get foreign children to go to elementary and junior high schools in Japan
If you want to go to elementary and junior high schools in Japan, you can go to elementary school children and junior high school students of any age by going through the procedure.

◆ Procedures for enrolling foreign children into Japanese elementary and junior high schools.
① When you register your address with your Ward Office or Ward Branch Office, mention that you would like to enroll your child in a Japanese Elementary or Junior High School and receive a Transfer Notice or Entering School Guide (document) (Tennyugaku Tsuchisho or Shugaku no Goannai).
② Get information about the different elementary or junior high schools your children could attend.
③ Visit a school and submit the School Entrance and Transfer Notice or Entering School Guide (Shugaku no Goannai). The school will give you the Enrolment Form for Foreign Children (Gaikokujin shugakutodoke). Please complete all necessary procedures, including filling out the enrollment form and returning it to the school.
* Research Section, Secretariat of Board of Education 

◆ Text books for elementary school and junior high school are free. School lunch, which is served at elementary schools, costs 4,700 yen per month.
Junior high school pupils can choose between school lunches and homemade lunches every month. One school lunch costs ¥310 yen.
※ A Financial support program is available for those families with financial difficulties. Ask a teacher at your child’s school about how to apply for the School Aid System (Shuugaku enjyo).
* Research Section, Secretariat of Board of Education Tel:075-222-3817
* Physical and Health Education Office, Secretariat of Board of Education Tel:075-708-5323

◆ If your child cannot speak Japanese

Children, who cannot speak Japanese, are able to receive Japanese lessons at the school. In addition, we can dispatch an interpreter etc.
* School Guidance Section, Secretarial of Board of Education Tel:075-222-3815

Senior High School

Senior high school education is not compulsory in Japan. There are public schools (national, prefectural and municipal schools) and various types of private senior high schools. The academic level of the children who want to enter Japanese senior high schools must be equivalent to a Japanese junior high school education.

◆ For further information about public senior high schools

* School Guidance Section, Secretarial of Board of Education Tel:075-222-3811
* High School Education Section, Secretarial of Board of Education, Kyoto prefecture Tel:075-414-5848

※ For families of students or students who would like to attend high school but have financial difficulties, there is a High School Entrance Support System where financial support is available (for high school or vocational schools).

◆ For further information about High School or Vocational School Entrance Support
* Child and Family Support Sub-Office TEL:075-251-1123 or your ward or branch ward office’s Childrearing Support Office (Public Health and Welfare Center.

International Schools

There are some international schools where the classes are taught in English, French or Korean. Such schools are classified as schools of “miscellaneous category” by the School Education Law. Some Japanese universities refuse to allow the graduates of these schools to take their entrance examinations. However, depending on the school, graduates may qualify to take Japanese university entrance exams. For details, inquire at the school.

Name of school Address Number
Kyoto International School Kitatawara-cho 317, Yoshiyamachi-dori Nakadachiuri-sagaru, Kamigyo-ku 075-451-1022
Lycée Français International de Kyoto 411 Motoshinmei-cho, Tominokouji-dori Gojo-agaru, Shimogyo-ku 075-354-5240
Educational Foundation Kyoto Korean School (Kyoto Chosen Gakuen) Kyoto Korean Junior-High and High school Toyama-cho 1, Kitashirakawa, Sakyo-ku 075-791-1131
Kyoto Korean Beginner’s School Okurisu maruyama 1-2, Fushimi-ku 075-573-3311
Kyoto Second Korean Beginner’s School Umezushirimizo-cho 3, Ukyo-ku 075-861-0608