Anyway, maybe for some perspective (what happens in foreign lands), here are some “bully” stories from elsewhere: https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/aosbva/what_happened_to_your_school_bully/, “Both the blog post and the comments seemed pretty alien to our experience here, and I thought posting anything that contrasted with it all would just be spitting into the wind.”. The educational problems of a country reflect and focus themselves on the human development of the children and young people who live there. It is also important to go through these steps fairly quickly. When she brought it up with her teacher, he basically told her that he couldn’t be bothered to change her score, even though it would be on her record. They're known as hikikomori. With homework and assignments during the vacation, school clubs and activities even on the weekend, and cleaning the whole school, studying in Japan means a lot of hard work and determination. Education in Japan is based on 6 years of primary school, 3 years of junior high school and 3 years of senior high school. The number exceeded 320,000 in the 2016 school year ending in March, up nearly 100,000 from 2015. .css-1xgx53b-Link{font-family:ReithSans,Helvetica,Arial,freesans,sans-serif;font-weight:700;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;color:#FFFFFF;}.css-1xgx53b-Link:hover,.css-1xgx53b-Link:focus{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Read about our approach to external linking. For months he had been attending his primary school with great reluctance, often refusing to go at all. If the homeroom teacher was unsupportive or if the problem did not improve I would then go and talk to the head of year. Though preschools are not compulsory and not free, more than 90% of Japanese students attend them. Glad things worked out well for your family. How did you say, “I will ruin your life if anything further happens.” in Japanese? There are lots of choices for clubs too. Apart from students attending club activities in the morning and after school, most of them also go to “juku”, or cram schools where they can study certain subjects harder or learn to speak other languages. Having a high level of education, such as a college diploma or a university degree, is critical for Japanese Ten-year-old Yuta Ito waited until the annual Golden Week holiday last spring to tell his parents how he was feeling - on a family day out he confessed that he no longer wanted to go to school. What I am curious to know is what the best way to find out of any incident, particularly if your kid keeps the bullying to himself and does not let the parent s or teachers find out about it. Teaching methods in Japan have also changed in recent years, but the changes have tended to be more gradual. The free school movement started in Japan in the 1980s, in response to the growing number of futoko. The atmosphere is very informal, like a big family. I think it is good I don’t have kids. It seems to fit pretty well with my impression of how things can end up being handled in Japanese schools though so perhaps a good place to start. I know she is only one example and there are many for whom a happy ending may take much longer, but as Ben says, there is hope and I sincerely hope that your daughter can recover in time. Japan is experiencing a great era, but problems are still ongoing. I hope she finds peace soon. In Japan, however, you’ll find that students typically start wearing school uniforms in junior high and continue wearing them throughout high school. Thank you for posting this. In August, the campaign group "Black kosoku o nakuso! I shook hands with the boys and told them I would ruin their lives if anything else happened. It might be useful to remind readers of that. Thank you for sharing this. Thousands of the jailed opposition leader's supporters defy a protest ban to attend nationwide rallies. Tomoe suffered from selective mutism, which affected her whenever she was out in public. One young girl was the happiest most cheerful girl you could meet and then in sixth grade the bullying started and she became a shell of a girl. I was so sad to read your story. I am older now, my Japanese is better, and I probably have more gravitas than I did during these incidents. Primary Schools in Japan Overview Japanese primary school lasts for six years. Let’s take a look at what the schools here are doing well and at what we can do to supplement our children’s learning to foster their non-Japanese skills. Thank you for linking to my article and posting your experience. About 46% of all high school graduates go on to university or junior college. I think this situation was handled more or less appropriately. These kind of things are (even) more important than money. For Prof Uchida, not developing students' diversity is a violation of their human rights - and many agree. Fortunately kids are resilient and they all seem to be doing okay now. They are encouraged to follow their individual skills and interests. We sent three kids through the Japanese system until the end of JHS. That is why we are at the point we are. It should not be a source of worry and stress. My wife and I refused, and filed a police report, which really annoyed the school. What's more, in Japan, children stay in the same class from year to year, so if problems occur, going to school can become painful. Biden apologises over troops sleeping in car park, Trump impeachment trial delayed until next month, Wuhan marks its anniversary with triumph and denial, Covid hand-outs: How other countries pay if you are sick, Your guide to avoiding lockdown back and shoulder pain, From cult hit to lockdown sensation: Call My Agent! Strict school rules were introduced in the 1970s and 1980s in response to violence and bullying. They're alternative schools that operate on principles of freedom and individuality. Incidents of bullying in Japanese schools have risen dramatically. That’s the nightmare, isn’t it? The principal said he agreed, and also said they would not be able to reveal the identity of the accuser. Not even sure if I […], Happy New Year This is the 100th Monday […], Kosei Nenkin — Applying for Your Private School Pension. One set of parents apologised, but the other two would barely look at us and certainly didn’t seem particularly remorseful. This would not be confrontational at all, basically just saying ‘this is what I heard, are you aware of it and what can we do to make it better’. This was just after the personal information laws came in, so it seemed both in bad taste and against the law to give our home address to the perpetrators. Posting a comment for a reader who is having technical difficulties: “[The school again wanted to deal with it internally. So why are so many children avoiding school in Japan? Recorded incidents of bullying in private and public schools across Japan, from elementary school through senior high schools, were as high as 414,378 in the academic year to March 31, 2018. submitted an online petition to the education ministry signed by more than 60,000 people, asking for an investigation into unreasonable school rules. Jeeze. The girl was 23 by then and came out to see us when we visited. A child suffering in silence. All to no avail. Sadly, it seems to me that Japanese people also are very Westernized because they accept this movement as a trend or part of Japanese culture. Of course I would take notes and possibly record all of these meetings. "In that sense, the support provided for example by … Being very involved with the school by being active in the PTA, etc. Just before she was due to graduate, our daughter’s homeroom teacher called my wife and told her they had received an anonymous email accusing our daughter of several things, and she’d like my wife to just come in and confirm that the accusations weren’t true. !” In it, the irate mother wrote, “I will now have to quit my job. Being very involved with the school by being active in the PTA, etc. Japan has the ninth highest suicide rate in the world, only beaten by countries like Lithuania and Kazakhstan. He sees this as a tacit admission that futoko children are not the problem but that they are reacting to an education system that is failing to provide a welcoming environment. My wife and I were both working, so this wasn’t really an option for us. I think that is the silver lining, that at least you are made aware of the bullying. Not at all! But in 1997 the terminology changed to the more neutral futoko, meaning non-attendance. "In classrooms with about 40 students who have to spend a year together, many things can happen," he says. It was hard to get through and I am not even a parent. When she was in the third year, some boys in her year stole her tracksuit, cut it up with scissors, and threw it away. People tend to pay more attention that way . So there is an incentive in keeping bullying problems secret, though that always means more backlash than handling things competently. How about you? Their families often don't know what to do, but one organisation is offering "sisters for hire" to help coax these young men out of their isolation. I, personally, don’t want to take any chances, but I cannot force my children to do something they do not want to do. Education prior to elementary school is provided at kindergartens and day-care centers. "In that sense, the support provided for example by free schools is very meaningful," Prof Uchida says. Thank you. Attitudes to futoko have changed over the decades. "Tights must not be coloured, hair must not be dyed, the colour of hair elastics is fixed, and they must not be worn on the wrist," she says. And Ben, the stuff you had to go through was no cake walk either. Meanwhile, high school kids interviewed about bullying see it as a necessary tool … "Most were silent with selective mutism, and at school they didn't do anything.". Most students attend public schools through the lower secondary level, but private education is popular at the upper secondary and university levels. Who doesn’t like free stuff? The proof of just how well Japan's educational system works at mid-educating the people is the Shukan Josei article referenced above: Japan is right now in full-spectrum collapse, with an aging population, radioactive food, an unelected government, vast national debt etc, and the author of an article on Japan's biggest problems honestly believes that poor bicycle manners and hungry wild boar merit inclusion in the list of Japan's … We ended up sending her to a private high school because we believed the school would take better care of her. Sometimes it is the parent who must take control. Indeed, the students even take classes in what well-being means! The fact largely correlates with problems of the small school district system. What a notion! Family circumstances, personal issues with friends, and bullying are among the main causes, according to a survey by the ministry of education. This not only applies to schools, but also to public transport and other public spaces, all of which are overcrowded. There are rooms with computers for Japanese and maths classes and a library with books and mangas (Japanese comic books). Get the Ultimate Guide to Personal Finance in Japan — 10 Steps to Financial Security. Easier said than done though, particularly during the difficult/rebellious teenage years. And she found it hard to obey the rigid set of rules that govern Japanese schools. In all these incidents, I noticed it was brought to your attention by the school or by your step-daughters. They're an accepted alternative to compulsory education, along with home-schooling, but won't give children a recognised qualification. For physically or mentally challenged students, there is a system called “Special Needs Education” to support special students to develop their self … On 17 October, the government announced that absenteeism among elementary and junior high school students had hit a record high, with 164,528 children absent for 30 days or more during 2018, up from 144,031 in 2017. This statement epitomizes the problem of the school system here: An incredibly out-dated, one-shot styled education system in which the quality of one’s life rides on the outcome of ‘a combined test’. The true cause of the ineffectiveness of English education in Japan is lack of vocabulary. It was entrance test season, and they didn’t want the boys’ test scores to be affected. Comparison of School Periods in Japan, 2002 and 2012. We had a nice chat, he agreed the teacher hadn’t behaved properly, my daughter’s grade was changed, and all was well with the world. Whether it's through exercising, playing games or studying, the important thing is to learn not to panic when they're in a large group. Education in Japan is compulsory at the elementary and lower secondary levels. “In the end we agreed to drop the charges if they paid compensation (about 150,000 yen I think) and promised not to pick on our daughter any more. The number of students attending free or alternative schools instead of regular schools has shot up over the years, from 7,424 in 1992 to 20,346 in 2017. Children and young people in Japan have many problems in the course of their growth which reflect the present state of economic and social conditions of Japan and its educational milieu. That was also the case for Tomoe Morihashi. His father was a doctor, and like him, he wanted to serve his community, so he became a social worker and foster father. There are two main types of preschools in Japan: hoiku-en and yochi-en. 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