The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology has instructed all schools to make greater efforts to become aware of bullying. The directive comes following the suicide earlier this year of Ryo Muramatsu, a 13-year-old student in Iwate who killed himself after being bullied.
The ministry urged schools to be on the alert when the new school term begins on Sept 1, Fuji TV reported. According to government figures, during the past 40 years, the number of suicides of students aged 18 and younger has been higher within the first week of school after the summer break than at any other time of year.
The ministry asked schools to go over the fundamental principles of bullying prevention with teachers and said that teachers need to be on the lookout for students asking for help, no matter how trivial it might seem at first.© Japan Today