TOKYO — Schools on military bases across the Pacific were preparing this week for the start of classes Monday after a summer that included a number of improvement projects.

Several schools in Korea, Guam, Okinawa and mainland Japan received improvements ranging from new facilities and plumbing to ventilation and roof repairs, the Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Pacific said Friday in a news release.

DODDS surveys over the past two years revealed that many military schools worldwide are in poor and failing physical condition. In addition to improvements made over the summer, DODDS is working with the Defense Department to secure $3.7 billion over the next five years to make further school repairs and upgrades.

In South Korea, summer improvements included $600,000 in renovations at Seoul American Middle School, which was targeted for immediate upgrades in May following complaints of mold and rats. And playground upgrades were made at Daegu, Osan and Seoul schools.

Also in South Korea, Casey Elementary School opens on Camp Casey as the first DODDS school located in the area between Seoul and the Demilitarized Zone.

On Okinawa, Bob Hope Primary and Amelia Earhart Intermediate schools received new heating, ventilation and air-conditioning units, and seven schools across the district added 11 kindergarten classes.

Japan and Okinawa schools received improvements that included new flooring, plumbing, roofs, paint, gym upgrades and improvements for student drop-off and pick-up areas.

Guam High School received an expanded kitchen.

In other back-to-school changes, according to Friday’s release, the Guam district will have a new superintendent, Steven Bloom, and new assistant superintendent, Jeff Arrington.

Yokota High School in Japan will host an Air Force Junior ROTC unit this school year, replacing the previous Army JROTC unit.

Schools also are planning welcome-back activities during the first weeks of the new term. For details and activities at Pacific schools, visit

For district and school contact information, visit

This story has been corrected from its original version.

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