Don’t like going to high school? Instead of physically going to campus and dealing with other whiney teens and your annoying teachers, you could send an avatar to go to a virtual school for you! Starting next spring, a private correspondence school in Chiba Prefecture called Meisei Cyber High School is opening its virtual doors!

Meisei High School, which has been open as a traditional correspondence school since 2000, has revealed their new school: the Cyber School. The idea is that the program, which can be “played” on any computer or smart phone (after entering your real name), is like a virtual reality game, in which your avatar will do the schooling, not you. You don’t even have to interact with real people (except four times a year for guidance counseling). After three years of playing you can actually earn your high school diploma, just as you would at a regular three-year Japanese high school! That sounds almost too good to be true!

▼ This cool guy could be your teacher.


“Classes” are conducted via a twenty-minute video lecture with a quiz at the end, but the quiz is more like a mini-game. You can borrow e-books from the library, go on “field trips” via the audio-visual “classroom” and if you have any problems you can email a teacher with questions.

▼You don’t have to wear boring uniforms like at normal high schools!


Your avatar will attend the virtual school, which is laid out like any other school with classrooms, desks and even an athletic field. You can also interact with other students’ avatars, as if you were actually meeting them in the hallway. You can add personality to your avatar by buying them clothes or goods with “Study Points,” earned by studying kanji (Chinese characters), doing math problems or learning new English vocabulary. After school, your avatar can “go home” to study or do other activities that interest you, like farming or fishing. These key elements set this program apart from other correspondence programs.

▼Who doesn’t love virtual-reality fishing after a long class?


The aim of this program is to target shut-ins and help them get back on track and hopefully adjust back into normal society. It can also be used as a normal correspondence course for other people, who for some reason or another didn’t attend high school (which in Japan, is not mandatory, although about 97 percent of kids do choose to enter).

Depending on its success, I’d be interested to see a program like this for the over 110,000 elementary and junior high school kids who don’t attend school for reasons ranging from bullying to sickness to good ole truancy. Although education through junior high is compulsory, these kids will all still graduate junior high along with their classmates, regardless of their academic abilities or time spent at school. A program like this could help them either stay on track or transition back into normal schooling and have fun doing it, as home schooling and alternative education is next to non-existent in Japan.

▼Could you see yourself here?


If you could go back in time, would you be interested in “playing” your way through a virtual high school instead of dealing with the all-too-real drama that is normal high school? Tell us your thoughts below.

Source: My Game News Flash
Images: YouTube (Meisei High School)