Before the war,
Hiroshima, known as the "education city" of Western Japan,
having 37 municipal schools and 4 public-private schools. After the
atomic bombing, only 11 schools were usable. Nineteen were burned
to the ground, five were collapsed but not burned, and six were partially
collapsed. Recovery was not easy.
Honkawa and Fukuromachi schools had been modern buildings of steel-reinforced concrete. After the bombing, their burnt-out shells remained standing, and all such schools immediately became emergency relief stations filled with injured victims. On September 15, 1945, prefectural authorities issued the order to resume school education. Children still living at evacuation sites outside the city returned to Hiroshima. However, with so few schools in usable condition, teachers were forced to hold classes outdoors or in the skeletal remains of buildings. The responsible authorities at each school wrote up recovery plans, but it was a time of terrible shortages. Construction materials brought in during the day would be stolen overnight. Rebuilding was a long and difficult ordeal.