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Guide to reduce virus risks issued for schools before reopening

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Can we see the photo of the Osaka commuters keeping a millimeter away from one another?

Physical distancing is not at all possible in Japan unless it is outside a city.

28 ( +29 / -1 )

In my opinion, some areas may be fine, but to make this a blanket kind of thing is rather dangerous. As evidenced by the movement of people this past weekend here, they take everything the government says as being "gospel"

Japan has yet to see a major spike in infections, that is rather strange, considering the scope of the virus, in every other country. Japanese are not special, they get sick too.

I know its about the testing, and now we will see how that turns, but opening just because it's a new year, may not be the wisest decision! Not to mention the "guidelines" are going to be wholly impossible to carry out in large schools that are understaffed as it is. Classroom numbers alone prevent them from implementing the "spacing" rules alone!

17 ( +18 / -1 )

Social distancing alone isn't effective way to slow the spreading of the virus. Wearing diapers and avoid using public toilets should be on the top list of WHO.

-37 ( +2 / -39 )

...warning against gathering in clusters.

The guidelines also request that students and staff avoid conversing with others at close quarters.

You mean like 40 students all together in a small classroom?

If this is now the official advice, then what are they proposing for packed trains and train stations?

18 ( +18 / -0 )

Reopening the schools next month sounds really stupid. The minister himself is saying that the situation is not better, as if anyone doubted that, so why reopen now? Is it because our numbers are not so frightening as are the numbers from Europe or Americas? Do we need to get to that point to start a serious quarantine? The point of a lock down is exactly not to go to those numbers!

20 ( +21 / -1 )

Iis very difficult to observe all the warnings the government and others call for to avoid the colonavirus. "Stay at home." It is impossible to continue social life.

-10 ( +4 / -14 )

I don't understand what's up with all these fear mongering! Just tighten the port of entries and Japan will be fine. Besides, Corona Virus isn't too fatal to most populace so that makes it no more dangerous than a common seasonal flu. If this fear mongering continues, people will die not due to the virus but due to the economic collapse!

-25 ( +12 / -37 )

At least the government has stopped the everything is okay line.... hopefully not too early.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The situation has not improved, so let's add another layer of difficulty to that by opening all the schools! This is like saying, "The fire is spreading so let's throw this gasoline on it and see what happens!" What play book are these guys using? "How to make a big problem even bigger"??

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Being Japan this is more like a general public procedure guide for humans.

Funny thing is, its probably the only nation where all the kidz and schools will literally do it.

Japan’s tendency to not touch so much and wear masks may have helped to not have an earlier surge in deaths.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

You cannot buy masks and hand cleaning alcohols at stores. I think those goods should be distributed by public offices to individuals rather than leaving it to "merchants." Their purpose is to make profits. They maybe turning goods to profitable channels. We have a saying in Japan from the Edo period "Folding screens and merchants cannot stand straight."

6 ( +9 / -3 )

good news! But I don’t see any changes in Japanese society. Men are anyway busy playing games inside their hubs Or slogging the whole day at offices whereas Japanese ladies are out in restaurants clubbing and dating foreigners as usual

hanami season is in and we see so many youngsters out drinking out

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

I have not yet understood why japan has so low cases count !

They are blaming Olympics delay stuff on the source China , but China has set an example by showing transparency and taking the immediate care and necessary action

Chinese girls and Hongkong girls in Japan are clubbing I heard

-20 ( +2 / -22 )

HBJ already said it:

"....... warning against gathering in clusters ...."

So how are we supposed to have classes?

30 to 40 students in one room ..... that would require lots of extra space.

As always, before opening ones mouth, folks should turn on their brains!

8 ( +8 / -0 )

For one, schools are closed now officially as Spring Break began yesterday. But they have reopened clubs.

Also, Osaka trains seem more packed today than it has been over the past few weeks.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@akie

I'm a relatively infrequent visitor to this site but it's obvious you like to 'stir things up'. I kindly ask you not to do so as a lot of people are worried, concerned, nervous, confused (by the lack of clear and information as well as information overload) etc. This is a time for cool heads to prevail and clear thinking to come to the fore. You're causing unnecessary anxiety in people who are facing a difficult.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Many of these kids live in households where both parents have to work so they go to an after school day care where they will again be exposed to crowds. Any regulations for these day care facilities? If not day care, then they go home where their grandparents take care them. See the potential for trouble? Don't know why these idiots in government can't.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Really its impossible to control the virus in a school environment and if one child/teachers catches it, will the entire school be shut down again.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Japan has yet to see a major spike in infections

I have not yet understood why japan has so low cases count 

If everyone who exhibited symptoms was tested, we'd see a huge spike.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

.Wearing diapers and avoid using public toilets should be on the top list of WHO.

@ Akie. Wow you really are an expert on this!!!

11 ( +12 / -1 )

yeah, guidelines and warnings... that,ll do it...

6 ( +6 / -0 )

calling for thorough ventilation of classrooms and warning against gathering in clusters.

• ‘thorough ventilation’ will probably result in an open window or two because most schools have no air conditioner and rely on kerosene heaters for warmth. (Not a problem now that the so-called winter is over).

• Japan has a new word! Clusters! In fact, a classroom is a cluster given the 30-40 students packed together in close quarters. Speaking of close quarters:

students and staff avoid conversing with others at close quarters, check their body temperature frequently and wear face masks.

• Standing a couple of arm lengths away from each other is good social distancing and helps hinder the spread of the virus. All 30-40 students can’t do it in their classrooms. Not enough room.

• Checking temperature - good idea.

• Wear a mask - because there’s no evidence it prevents contracting the virus but gives the impression of doing something (much like the government.)

When the Education Ministry makes urges, suggestions, and non-mandatory guidelines I often wonder when was the last time these government geniuses were in a classroom.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Japanese news is reporting an outbreak of corona virus in my very neighbourhood, and yet on a national level the response is one of denial. Crazy to think that within a couple of weeks I may be struck down. You'll get more truth from my blog than Japanese news outlets.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The guidelines also request that students and staff avoid conversing with others at close quarters

Yeah sure, good luck with that.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

while rest of intelligent world is doing distance learning Japan leaders want my kids to go to school

if my kids or I get infected as a result I will resort to every legal and illegal action to kick some butt

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Japan’s tendency to not touch so much and wear masks may have helped to not have an earlier surge in deaths

I guess you have not been to a supermarket and see how fruits like cucumber, avogado, lettuce etc are displayed bare and people are free to touch with their bare hands. How about the shopping carts and baskets, japanese are special, they don't touch them.

It does us no good deceiving ourselves just to feel good.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Japanese news is reporting an outbreak of corona virus in my very neighbourhood, and yet on a national level the response is one of denial. 

@Bungle - Stay safe dude.

Many people on here over the last 4-6 weeks predicted this is exactly what would happen - once the Olympics were officially cancelled or postponed suddenly outbreaks would get reported.

It makes me sick. This has obviously been going on all the time.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

You cannot buy masks and hand cleaning alcohols at stores. 

It's not as good as washing your hands, but just as a heads up, but there is a WHO recipe for hand sanitizer. It's mostly pure alcohol, ethanol or (still available online in Japan) isopropyl alcohol, with something to soothe the skin, glycerol or aloe vera, a little bit of water, and optionally some peroxide ("Oxydol" in Japan) to kill any bacteria. These are poisonous chemicals, so keep everything labeled and don't bother if you cannot measure accurately. I made some because some toilets I've been to when out did not have soap. This included two convenience stores. I now carry a small spray bottle with my home made sanitizer.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Funny thing is, its probably the only nation where all the kidz and schools will literally do it.

BS! If you think that kids won't be in close contact then you don't have kids and in fact you are not that much aware of the real world. Kids in Japan are not different than in the rest of the world so stop with your ridiculous and distorted perception of Japan.

Japan’s tendency to not touch so much and wear masks may have helped to not have an earlier surge in deaths

BS! This is not only Japan, but in many Asia countries including China and Sought Korea where masks are also heavily used but it did not prevent the infection there. Also Japan has every year outbreaks of seasonal flu so the masks never proved to be effective for anything. So your simplistic association with the surge in deaths makes little sense since there are many more factors involved.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

while rest of intelligent world is doing distance learning Japan leaders want my kids to go to school

Then don't send them to school and teach your kids yourself.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Our Strong request to Japan Government.

Please don't open school unless you lock-down the country at least for two weeks.

See the situation after lock-down and decide what to do?

Since infection are increasing, it might be a suicidal decision for kids and their family as well.

Why don't you learn from others countries???

Are you listing to us???

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I dont want to send my kid back to school my the wife does, nightmare!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Checking temperature is like wearing a mask - doesn't protect anyone and gives you a false sense of security. You can have the virus, pass it on and be asymptomatic.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

"- once the Olympics were officially cancelled or postponed suddenly outbreaks would get reported."

Well, let's hope they keep up the testing. And find a way to skirt the "must hospitalize anyone positive regardless of symptoms" rule so the testing won't automatically overwhelm the system.

Here in the sticks I'm not too worried about the schools...my child's school is not crowded and has space to spread them out. But Tokyo Nagoya and Osaka.....can't see how this doesn't cause an explosion. I think the sort-of secret plan is "gradual spread, catch the serious cases as they arise, and accept some extra deaths as inevitable". But those packed trains....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Is the Ministry of Education full of infectious disease experts? It sounds like they are requiring schools, administrators, and teachers to be such.

I’m not sure that all the three conditions (social distancing being one) can be meet in major cities to avoid spreading. The trains seem more crowded after the government announced seemingly lax measures last week.

Unfortunately, the number of infections increases on a daily basis in Japan. I understand the strict and low testing because the system is not equipped to deal with an outbreak. I understand if someone tests positive, you have to give them a bed.

However, will these vague guidelines open for interpretation by non-infectious disease experts not shift this situation into clusters? Some schools might use these guidelines as a justification to open their doors when they should be closed. This could be dangerous territory.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So open Schools, Kids get infected, they're sent home, Parents get infected ... or more likely Grandparents - who may end up dying if they catch this virus. Where does all this help Japan ?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Lock-down = anticipation and prevention...re-opening = endangerment and dissemination. Do the math!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Can you spell stupid?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

 it no more dangerous than a common seasonal flu. If this fear mongering continues, people will die not due to the virus but due to the economic collapse!

so stupid don't know where to start, Flue has a mortality rate of 0.1% for which there is a vaccine, coronavirus has a mortality rate of 1% ten time that of the flue for which there isnt a vaccine and it is more contagious than the flu, So if you treat this virus like the flu and let it spread naturally like the flu it will kill far more people if it isnt contained, which is exactly why governments are rushing t contain it.

I havent known and recession or depression, market collapse that have caused a 1% mortality rate.

Putting the economy over this virus is just plain stupidity and suicide

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Rule 1. Don't reopen schools.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

wearing a mask - doesn't protect anyone and gives you a false sense of security. You can have the virus, pass it on and be asymptomatic.

then why do medical staff use them! for a false sense of security!? wearing a mask isnt fool proof but it does stop many coughing particles from those infected from spreading outwards and those not infected from breathing them in. Medically proven that wearing masks offer more protection that not wear anything at all.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Kindergartens, after school clubs 児童館 and some schools have been open the whole time and there haven't been any problems.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

How did they find masks for all those children? There have been none in my area since early January.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Is this a joke ???. Children are innocent!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Good on paper. A person must have a limit to his dumbness.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

"The guidelines also request that students and staff avoid conversing with others at close quarters".

How is this possible in a classroom when the desks are about 50 cm apart.

I know Japanese teachers do a lot of teaching from the front of the room, but if the teacher wants to move among the class and check on the kids' work is she going to levitate?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Been trying to buy a thermometer for a week in two different prefectures. All sold out.

how can you provide thermometers for every single classroom in japan?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

All types of thermometers are available online from sites like Amazon. ¥2,000 upwards.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

wtfjapan: Medical personnel wear masks because their faces are very close to patients who may sneeze or whatever right into their faces. They are not wearing them to avoid contracting Corolla virii. Your point is invalid on this one.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kindergartens, after school clubs 児童館 and some schools have been open the whole time and there haven't been any problems.

How do you know there has been no problem, do you work at the ministry of health?

With the self restraint practised by the media, I have little faith that everything is reported when so called experts have been tauting how Japan has succeeded where every other country has failed holding well against the virus through measures that anybody with a functioning brain knows is half hearted at best.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

vanityofvanitiesToday  07:58 am JST

You cannot buy masks and hand cleaning alcohols at stores

Not sure where you live, but the 100 yen shops near me (central Tokyo) all have alcohol handwipes in stock.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Why have children go to school anyway?

Just revert to all online classes.

Problem solved.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Reopening the schools after just two weeks is madness, people could be infected, ( unknowingly ) be walking around with this virus inside that person it take a period of time for it to get going on/in its host and he or she is spreading it unknowingly, but then they get the symptoms and go to hospital for a test, but in the mean time he or she has been spreading it, to new hosts, and so it goes on, so its best that we all stay indoors away from each other for 3-4 weeks to break this cycle. If children went back to school they could be reinfecting other children! and the cycle of spreading goes on.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The false sense of security is important in Japan. Starts at an early age, earthquake practice with kindergarteners putting those “tea cosies” on their heads... Sure kids, if the roof falls down you’ll be fine!

Japan is a safety country with four seasons!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

So most of the students will get the virus, but will have mild or no symptoms. Then the parents, teachers, and their friends will get the virus and ... does anyone want to rethink this idea?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Reopening the schools next month sounds really stupid. The minister himself is saying that the situation is not better, as if anyone doubted that, so why reopen now? Is it because our numbers are not so frightening as are the numbers from Europe or Americas? Do we need to get to that point to start a serious quarantine? The point of a lock down is exactly not to go to those numbers!

Remember this is a country where educational achievement is everything and pretty much the only thing that matters to most Japanese families and you hinder that, you will have a society that will come unglued and anger and frustrations will no doubt boil over to borderline desperation and who knows what. Since the war, the country hasn’t had to shut down like this, people are already edgy and want their kids back in school. Now imagine if this situation lingers on into the fall or beyond, I think the stress for a lot of parents not having their kids in school is going to be too much especially if there is no deadline or light at the end of a tunnel. The sensible and logical thing would be to close all schools until further notice, but the reality is, that’s probably not going to happen and sad as it all is, I think Japan won’t get it or see the light until a bunch of teachers contract the virus, then maybe they’ll understand the seriousness of this deadly virus.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Why have children go to school anyway?

Just revert to all online classes.

Problem solved.

Why do I feel that pitching that reasonable idea would be met with hmmmss and air sucking....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The classroom I mostly work in is about 4 metres by 8 metres. A lot of that space is consumed by storage cupboards etc. In the tiny bit of space that remains 20 students and I are crammed together. There is only one 20 minute outside playtime a day. For the rest of the time we are all in close proximity. I've been constantly suffering a series of headaches, sore throats and diaorrea, coughing and sneezing for months. That's what happens to elementary teachers working in such conditions. If the government are serious about suspending the spread of this new virus they would not be allowing staff or students to continue to work together under such conditions. If they were really determined to slow the spread and defeat this virus reopening the schools is a foolish and self defeating decision.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan seems to be in some sort of bubble, where everything is 1932, or something.

Fresh air DOESN'T kill the virus. Why do you think people have been told, the world over, to STAY AT HOME and NOT GO OUTSIDE?

Masks don't protect people from the virus (in the air).

Seriously, this government is trash.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan has yet to see a major spike in infections

I have not yet understood why japan has so low cases count 

If everyone who exhibited symptoms was tested, we'd see a huge spike.

Very good question and there are several possible reasons the virus is slow to spread.

Most people are worry mask. We cannot find them here in the US, Most are being sent to our hospitals.

Right mask only help, if nothing more than keeping your hands away from your mouth.

I believe much of the transmission is by contact with the virus, on clothes, on body and some way gets to the mouth. Here they say 7-9 days on plastic or metal surfaces. Less for cardboard. that is the reason for washing the hands several times a day. Also because Japanese bathe more than many people, it more likely that the virus is destroyed. I received a broadcast from England that said when you come home, drop you clothes in the washing machine and take a bath right away.

Lastly you have not really began your testing. When they started in New York, the numbers of infected people increased dramatically,

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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