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Interview

September school year best fits colleges: ex-Tokyo University chief

Hamada says now is the time for change

Educators hope switching the start of the school year to September will help encourage academic exchange with overseas institutions.

TOKYO -- The April start of Japan's school year, which dates back a century, is said to be related to the country's agricultural background. 

When Japan pushed modernization during the Meiji Period in the late 19th century, farmers were told to submit their taxes in money and not in rice. But it took time for farmers to turn their fall harvests into money, and made it difficult for bureaucrats to form a state budget by January to start the new year.

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