The Internet at the Speed of Thought

Japan Keeps Train Station Operating For One Special Passenger

at2:13 pm | By

How Far Would You Go To Get Your Daughter To School?

Everybody has to get their kid to school in the morning one way or another, and no two school-bound journeys are alike. For some it might be a quick bus ride across the county, for others an hour-long ferry across the channel, or for many, the dreaded interstate bumper-to-bumper free for all.

But what if your only way to get to school was on the train? Doesn’t sound so uncommon — lots of people take the train to school. Harry, Ron, and Hermione HAVE to take the train to school! But imagine you’re literally the ONLY person who takes the train from your stop — in the United States, that train station would have been demolished long before the daily ridership dropped so low.

But for one high school student in Japan, that train is the only way for her to get to school from her home in the rural countryside.

Kyu-Shirataki Train Station in Japan

Source: Twitter @Kikou9186

The cost of keeping that Kyu-Shirataki train station running is losing the Japanese government a lot of money — but for Japan Railways, their part in supporting the education of their young people, even if it’s just one, is far more important than cutting stops to save a buck. Take notes, America! This is how you treat your people!

But the impact of this story doesn’t end there — read on to see how Japan’s commitment to education is changing their whole country in unexpected ways!

No Child Left Behind

The train schedule at the Kyu-Shirataki train station on the Japanese island of Hokkaido operates on a very unusual schedule — outgoing trains stop just one time early in the morning. No other trains stop at the station until later in the afternoon, when a few stops are made, and then the next train after isn’t until the following morning. The only thing stranger than the schedule of stops at Kyu-Shirataki is the ridership — the only girl who uses the station stop is a local high school student who has no other way of getting to school.

In The Country, Transportation Options Are Limited

Due to Japan’s aging population, the number of riders at stations located in remote regions like Kyu-Shirataki have dropped off dramatically in recent years. But for the parents of the few students sprinkled throughout the region whose kids have no other way to get to school than the train, they had no choice but to plead with authorities not to close the stations.