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May 10, 2005

Tightening the Purse Strings

An educational board in the city of Oshima, Hokkaido has cancelled a study abroad program that sent a group of junior high school students to Australia every year. Since 1991, the program has sent 14 selected 8th-grade students to Sydney and the neighboring city of Manley during the winter vacation. Students prepared for the trip each year with English conversation lessons from local ALTs. The board cited the cost of sending the students and accompanying teachers, which came to ¥8 million annually. It also said that the original goals - to establish ties and promote cultural exchange - had been accomplished.

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