History of Facility Development

PHASE I (1982–1985)

The Nishimachi Internationalist Issue Three, Spring 1982


We are pleased to announce that our new Building Fund Campaign is on its way to success. Our goal is to construct a new building on the present campus to meet our needs for a large covered area.

PhaseI a

Our building project gained the interest of some very prominent architects. After much discussion, a team of two architects were recommended by our Architect Screening Committee and approved by the Board of Directors. Mr. Masachika Murata will head the team as the Project Supervisor and Mr. Edward Suzuki will serve as the Project Architect. Both architects are thoroughly familiar with international education and have special appreciation for Nishimachi’s goals. Mr. Murata has been associated with Nishimachi from the very beginning; his wife was instrumental in opening the school and his two sons were two of the first students. Mr. Murata also designed the first Nishimachi school building.


The Internationalist Issue Fourteen, Spring 1991

Thus Tomo no Kai was born
by Sherry Ladd, Tomo no Kai President, 1980–1981, written in 1991

The birth year of Tomo no Kai – 1980. Tané Matsukata was the Headmistress, Principal, and Inspiration of Nishimachi International School. There was no new gymnasium/Auditorium/classroom building. Basketball games, the Food Fair, Graduation: all were held on the blacktop playground behind the Matsukata House.

The idea of Tomo no Kai was originated by several NIS parents who saw a need: teachers and staff were burdened with non-educational tasks in addition to their teaching responsibilities. The parents decided they could relieve the educators by utilizing the skills and talents of other parents to provide help. A proposal was presented to Miss Matsukata and Tomo no Kai was born.

The first year of Tomo no Kai’s existence was devoted to identifying volunteers who could provide help for teachers, organize the Food Fair, produce the NIS telephone Directory and facilitate communication between the school and the many cultures represented in the parent population. There were challenges involved. For years NIS staff had produced events such as the Food Fair. Accumulated knowledge of events that required months of preparation had to be transferred from experienced teachers to novice parents. Cross cultural communication blocks had to be overcome.

Though fund raising was not Tomo no Kai’s primary objective, it was an obvious need. Plans were being made for a new building and a monumental fund raising effort was under way. Tomo no Kai decided to help by sponsoring an auction. Items were collected, a date was selected and the First Annual NIS Auction was held on the spot where the new building now stands.


The Nishimachi Internationalist Issue Four, Fall 1982


What started out to be “castles in the air, a gymnasium for Nishimachi students,” is slowly but surely reaching actuality. Yes, we are now 1/4 of the way there.

Our architects, Mr. Masachika Murata and Mr. Edward Suzuki have started the groundwork on an initial plan. Mr. Robert Collins, chairman of the Building Committee, recently reported the architects’ intention of “integrating existing structures with new and recognizing that physical plant must be a reflection of the human characteristics of the organization, and not the determinant.”

Tomo no Kai will be sponsoring a harp concert by Naoko Yoshino (class of ’82) on February 28, 1983, a Japanese Dance Costume Show by Mari Takeuchi’s (class of ’76) family on March 15, 1983, and an Auction on April 16, 1983. As on-going projects, parents and staff are offering a variety of lessons from which the fees are donated to the Building Fund. All Nishimachi is working!!


The Nishimachi Internationalist Issue Seven, Spring 1985

by Robert J. Collins, Building Committee Chairman

Shakespeare’s immortal words ringing from the stage. The subtleties of a Noh drama, bathed in light and color. The musical hilarity of Gilbert and Sullivan operetta. The Christmas pageant, with songs for children of all ages. Or, if you prefer, championship basketball – boys and girls, A and B teams. Tumbling, acrobatics, gymnastics of Olympic caliber. Volleyball and badminton – student, neighborhood, and all-Japan, all-Asia, perhaps worldwide participation.

The new Nishimachi International School Gymnasium/Auditorium will be completed in July, and open by the beginning of the 1985-86 school year. Due to the guidelines established by the school’s 1980 Environmental Workshop, the new structure considerably enhances Nishimachi’s physical plant.

The new building is exceptional in other ways as well. It is virtually paid for. At last count, over 1,450 corporations and individuals have contributed to its construction costs. This is not only a testimonial to the organizational skills of the fund-raising committee, but an indication of the awareness in the international community of the significance of Nishimachi’s educational programs. The Trustees and the Board of Directors join the faculty and administration in thanking all who have helped.

Phase I 2

Dedication ceremony for the Ushiba Memorial Gymnasium, the result of the Phase I Building Campaign
Nishimachi International School
2-14-7 Moto Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0046 Japan Tel: +81- (0)3-3451-5520

A well-recognized, independent, and coeducational K-9 international school in central Tokyo.

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