At John Therry Catholic High School we offer two modern languages – Indonesian and Japanese. The Languages Department uses modern textbooks and innovative techniques to ensure that all students enjoy and benefit from the learning of a second language.

Australian Education Ministers have stated the growing need for Australians to be 'Asia literate'. During the Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians, it was acknowledged that the growing influence of India, China and other Asian nations (Indonesia and Japan) is a major change in the world that impacts on all young Australians. In order to equip our students for this future, they need to be leaving school with deep knowledge of the region. A goal was set that by time they leave school, a strong cohort of young Australians will speak an Asian language and all young Australians will have foundational and deep knowledge, skills and understanding of the histories, geographies, arts and literature of the diverse countries of Asia.

The new Australian Curriculum includes the cross-curriculum priority of Asia and Australia's engagement with Asia in every subject from Foundation to Year 12. This means that as part of their regular studies, students will, for example, explore Japanese poetry, study the history of the Vietnam War, document the contributions of Chinese people to Australian society, use the geography of Indonesia to study sustainability, research the biology of Malaysia's rainforests, consider India's development of mathematics, and become proficient in Asian languages including Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian and Korean.

Bahasa Indonesia

For Australia, the countries of the Asian region are of critical importance. They are our closest neighbours and trading partners. They represent the cultural heritage of a growing number of Australians and their rich traditional and contemporary cultures provide opportunities for our social, creative and intellectual development.

Indonesia in particular, being one of our closest neighbours is becoming increasingly important to our economic and social future. Indonesia is one of Australia’s most important bilateral relationships. Our countries enjoy a highly productive and partnership that encompasses business, education, defence, security and people-to-people links. The 17,000 islands that make up Indonesia, also create by far the largest and most varied archipelago on Earth. The national spans over 5000 equatorial kilometres between Asia and Australia. Its total coastline extends over 80000 km – which is close to one third of the Earth's circumference at the equator!


Now more than ever, Australia's geographical position has opened up new trade links like never before. More importantly, Australia is consolidating itself as a key figure within Australasia and relies on its neighbours to stay competitive. Japan is one of Australia's biggest trading partners, only second to China. This growth in trade has created a demand between the two countries to become closer more than ever.

Japan is a country steeped in rich culture, tradition, and modern day advancements. From Sumo to Geisha, Ninja to Samurai, Tokyo to Kyoto, Japan is renowned around the world as being one of the most diverse, unique, exciting and interesting countries on earth. With a population 6 times greater than Australia in a land mass smaller than Queensland, the study of Japan and Japanese is a fantastic opportunity for students.

Although only in its 3rd year after a long absence, the Japanese program currently includes 4 mandatory year 8 classes, a year 9 elective class, and a year 10 elective class. During their study, Students can develop their understanding of Japan and its people, while learning a new diverse language which will open up a world of opportunity. We look forward to meeting you in the Japanese classroom! 会いにたのしみよ!

In September 2014, a combined group of year 9 and 10 Japanese students travelled to Japan on a 12 day cultural immersion tour – it was amazing! Bring on 2016 when the next tour will run for our elective students!