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Hashimoto blasts education board over basketball teacher lapse

61 Comments

Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto on Thursday strongly criticized the Osaka Board of Education for its inadequate investigation into reports that the basketball coach of a school had been repeatedly using corporal punishment on team members.

Board of Education officials told a news conference on Tuesday that a 17-year-old high school student committed suicide on Dec 23 after he was physically punished by a teacher who coached the basketball team.

The officials said the incident happened at Sakuranomiya high school on Dec 22. The boy, who had an excellent academic record, was captain of the school basketball team which the 47-year-old teacher had coached since 1994. The teacher is currently on suspension.

Officials said the boy hanged himself with a tie at his home. His mother found a letter to the teacher and a note in which he said he couldn’t cope with being physically punished.

The boy told his mother that he had been slapped by the teacher 30-40 times on the day before he committed suicide, Fuji TV reported.

On Thursday, the education board said it had received complaints from other parents about the teacher and instructed the school to question him in September 2011. The school questioned the teacher for about 15 minutes, but did not speak to any students, Fuji TV reported. The teacher told officials that he sometimes used physical punishment and that the boys' parents were aware of his disciplinary measures.

Speaking to reporters, Hashimoto said it was unacceptable for the school not to ask the boys what was going on, Fuji reported. He also said that slapping a boy 30-40 times should be considered a crime.

Meanwhile, the school principal said two other junior teachers in their 20s had noticed the basketball coach hitting students but could not protest because both of them had been in his class when they were students at the school. Hashimoto said that when a teacher has been at the same school for so long, he has more power than the principal, and the school loses its ability to function as an educational institution.

Meanwhile, NHK reported that Sakuranomiya high school had also received complaints on at least two occasions from parents about a volleyball teacher for using corporal punishment in 2011.

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61 Comments
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So the teachers knew, the Board of Education knew, the parents knew, and absolutely no one did anything. Wow!

15 ( +15 / -1 )

For once, Hashimoto, I completely and utterly agree with everything you say.

16 ( +15 / -0 )

I can't disagree with Hashimoto on this one. Yes, it's a crime, and when a teacher has been at a school for such a long time (in Japan) he may well end up with more power and influence than the principle. So I hope Hashimoto pursues this and makes sure it goes to court. Not just for the coach, but the principal and the others who covered it up before. At the very least they should be demoted. The principal is not fit to be in charge of children. 15 minutes chat with the principal in 2011? Shame on him.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

The coach was criticized I see but was he fired?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Meanwhile, the school principal said two other junior teachers had noticed the basketball coach hitting students but could not protest because both of them had been in his class when they were students at the school.

Good job fulfilling your obligations to protect your students. I hope you guys go to jail too. How about doing the right thing rather than worry about some ass backwards sense of duty to the "senior" teacher.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It kills me to agree with him but he is 100% correct on this. WHY was this jerk allowed to stay there so long when policy states they need to change? I don't care if he's "that good" of a coach. You move!!

Still no word on if he's been fired or sitting next to the kendo coach I know who used to hit students.

No idea how many times I saw kids being hit while working in Osaka at an ALT. Many. The kids fought back in the south of the city which always made me smile. Then they really got pounded on. ALL in the staff-room in front of many other teachers. I was once told to put my head down so I wouldn't see it. Clearly something needs to be done. FIRE this guy, no questions asked. No pension, no chance or working with kids every again. Oh and release his name and picture already.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Would not be so quick to praise Hashimoto for his remarks on this one, as he had clearly been in support of corporal punishment as a necessary educational measure until this incident took place. He should rather offer a sincere apology for the influence his remarks as city mayor may have had on the mindset of the teachers in Osaka.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

All, regardless of his support for corporal punishments, he's 100% correct in what he's stating here. I can't stand the man but credit where credit is due and he's nailed this one.

Good I hate saying that.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Take my hat off for Hashimoto on this one. Total agreement on his statement and I'm glad he's taking a deep look into this case. Hopefully some reforms through him in office.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Matthew Simon

"Good job fulfilling your obligations to protect your students."

Who told you japanese teachers Job is to protect his students?

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

The boy told his mother that he had been slapped by the teacher 30-40 times on the day before he committed suicide, Fuji TV reported.

If a teacher slapped me once, I'd give him a pass. Once more, and he'd have both of his arms broken and his jaw would have to be wired.

Speaking to reporters, Hashimoto said it was unacceptable for the school not to ask the boys what was going on, Fuji reported. He also said that slapping a boy 30-40 times should be considered a crime.

No. Anyone slapping anyone, even once, should be considered a crime.

Meanwhile, the school principal said two other junior teachers had noticed the basketball coach hitting students but could not protest because both of them had been in his class when they were students at the school.

Spineless pieces of ****.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

I'm going to ask once again, what did the parents do? If some teacher smacked my kid, you can believe I would be down there that day demanding a meeting and going to the BOE. I am not blaming the parents in any of this but if mom knew this was happening, do she do anything?? It seems teachers think they can do this crap because no one is telling them they can't.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

He also said that slapping a boy 30-40 times should be considered a crime.

He was a bit stronger worded than this. The perpetrator of the punishment along with all those who have maintained that culture need to be brought to justice. I'm not against corporal punishment in principal, I think it can be an effective tool in maintaining discipline (and yes I was "disciplined" at school!), however it is not something that can be used as a way of improving someones sports ability which just shows how ineffective as a "teacher" this guy is. Sadly this is all too common in junior sport.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The report is on the telly right now. Everyone is trying to cover each other's back. As usual, there is a lot of talk about investigations, but nothing which addresses the entrenched problem of negative feedback in general in the education system. Nothing will change until the idea that a "damn good thrashing" will improve performance is debunked.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This is another example of failure across the board in Japanese education to provide adequate duty of care to the students, inclusive of teachers, school admin, fellow students, Board of Education and parents. It's a systematic failure, a resistance to change and a belief in traditional practice that perpetuates the problem. You get charged for criminal negligence for even knowing and doing nothing in other Education Systems, let alone being the perpetrator.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

For once Hashimoto makes sense. I need to look outside and see if pigs are flying.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Sadly this case of teacher - student sports violence is not rare.

I personally know of a case in a leading prefectural baseball high-school, where 3 punches to the head by the coach - 1st stunned the boy, 2nd buckled him, 3rd floored him - was not followed up on, even after reporting, because it might, "all get messy and you(my witness friend) will get dragged into it."

And if it's not direct attacking abuse, then excessive punishing physical training or belittling mental abuse which don't show bleeding lips and broken bones.

Samurai spirit - eh?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

When Japanese confront any problem, be it legal or diplomatic or academic or business, their usual method of dealing with it is to spend the next three years holding meetings and discussions about it. If you want a quicker solution, the tried-and-true technique is to apply brute force (or the threat thereof). This is why an American attorney here once said to me, "If it weren't for the yakuza, nothing in Japan would ever get done!" The fate of the basketball player may have been extreme, but this "devil sergeant" mentality --- a vestige of pre-1945 militarism --- permeates Japanese society at every level and is still going strong.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

School sports in Japan are basically militaristic - most likely very similar to China and the Koreas.This needs to change - the endemic corporal punishment, forced runs in midday summer heat, repeatitive training every day (when they'd be better off actually studying - that's what schools are for). Sports for kids should be fun - if a few of these kids become great players, that's just a bonus.

As for the basketball "coach"- he absolutely should be jailed for a long time for child abuse.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

It's easy for Hashimoto to make comments like this in a case like this. As Mayor of the City he has to make some public comment to condemn the actions of a City employee who was directly responsible for the suicide of the boy in this case.

However, that being said, he has known all along that teachers, and coaches, have been acting like this since before he ever took office. He more than likely experienced it himself when he was a student-athlete as well.

He is only commenting now because the guy got caught and in my opinion doesnt really care whether the teachers slap their students or not.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Yubaru: Exactly my thoughts. Instead of Hashimoto worrying about who in public service has tattoos, he and his staff should be focusing on issues like this. This is nothing but lip service to show he cares, but has nothing to address the problem.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I'd lay bets that Hashimoto belts his kids around the head!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hashimoto now Bullies the Education Board. Great. How about taking physical abuse more seriously in JP Please? My Ex wife was physically abused in JP by members of her family, Police did nothing! Its not new, go at Gov level for this, imprison the Coach!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

The system needs a overhaul on abuse. With the number of suicides in this country every year it's becoming painfully obvious that it's flawed. I see it coming ......only with a different object of choice for mass murder followed by a suicide...hopefully things don't start to mirror the North American acts of recent school shootings and avoidable violence.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Meanwhile, the school principal said two other junior teachers in their 20s had noticed the basketball coach hitting students but could not protest because both of them had been in his class when they were students at the school. Hashimoto said that when a teacher has been at the same school for so long, he has more power than the principal, and the school loses its ability to function as an educational institution.

First off this is a public school, not private, and typically speaking teachers are transferred between other schools USUALLY after 5 years. How long was he in this school to get entrenched with supposedly more power than the principal?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Too many people in charge at schools stick their heads in the sand when it comes to things like this. I know of a teacher who was fired for reporting a teacher to the school owner (at a kindergarden) for hitting little kids. Sad sad state of affairs. Sadly this current rage will die down in a few days and everything will resort back to its sick and sorry state.....until it happens again and again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Hashimoto paying lip service and trying to score house points.

Hey, perhaps if you were running your city, instead of flirting with national politics, you would have been more aware of what's going on (although I highly doubt it).

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Hashi is the epitome of a jack-in-the-box. He holds his finger up and tries to figure out where the winds of opinion blows. And the he speaks - obvious, populist words, attempting to convey the image that he is a man of the people, a man of action. He is not. He is a populistic opportunist, nothing more.

And so it continues: Teacher bully does whatever he feels like. Nobody has the balls to speak up. I wonder why. If it isn't the kohai/sempai syndrome, it is fear or shame. Or anything else, just as long as you don't have to deal with the pesky reality of this society being based on skewed power structures. Teachers are supposed to be role models for youngsters. People who can lead the kids in the right direction and to make them successful in life. Japan is only about "get in line" thinking and independent thinking seems all but erased. What does it say about other teachers who don't speak up when something is wrong? Is that someone who is supposed to teach my kids basic human values? I think not.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Out of the many other things that disgust me about Hashimoto, he scores one point of redemption here.

Now if only he can ditch his tattooaphobia and other dated ideas.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You people praising Hashi - get real. If you guys can't see through his empty words, I'm not surprised Taro Japanese can't either...

2 ( +4 / -2 )

it probably is a crime. the problem is selective enforcement of the law by police/prosecutors....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Would not be so quick to praise Hashimoto for his remarks on this one, as he had clearly been in support of corporal punishment as a necessary educational measure until this incident took place. He should rather offer a sincere apology for the influence his remarks as city mayor may have had on the mindset of the teachers in Osaka.

Lots of more traditionally minded people still support a small amount of corporal punishment (say a spank across the hands). It doesn't necessarily translate to him supporting 30-40 hits.

But I must ask, why doesn't that guy quit?

You people praising Hashi - get real. If you guys can't see through his empty words, I'm not surprised Taro Japanese can't either...

May be empty may be not, but he has to start with words.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@kazuki Lots of more traditionally minded people still support a small amount of corporal punishment (say a spank across the hands). It doesn't necessarily translate to him supporting 30-40 hits. Are you saying a spank across the hand is ok? Any Teacher who would spank my child, I would wait for him in the Car park and Spank him big time with an Iron bar. It is this kind of mentality that gives the notion of 'freedom to abuse' as long as you consider it 'Traditional'. Abuse is abuse. Power or Mental or Physical, there are NO excuses, Traditionally, Culturally or Racial.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Teacher bully does whatever he feels like. Nobody has the balls to speak up.

Not really. Some spoke up in this case. They reported the teacher. Hashimoto speaks up. Just speaking is useless. The problem is at another level : Mombusho. Is there not a Minister of Education ? A Prime Minister ? Moshi moshi... Fumio KISHIDA and Shinzo Abe are dead or what ? One of their major administration made a mega blunder, now they wait what ? Shouldn't they make heads fall at the BOE in fault and prepare a clearer new rule to tell to BOE, school managements and teachers what their duties are in such cases ? They wait how many new cases ?

What does it say about other teachers who don't speak up when something is wrong?

That says that whatever they say or do, the bully is kept in his position, and that position is often one of authorities or big influence on themselves and their career. In an ideal work : You see your coworker is a brute, you tell the school director, and the kid's parent, you all go together with a guy from BOE to file a suit at the police, the BOE immediately suspends the teacher for the time of investigation and if facts are confirmed, terminates his contract. But no, wake up.what happens is your director, the BOE, they just go to tell the bully you are badmouthing. And you don't get the promotion you expected, they all say you can't be trusted, you vile traitor. The parents of victims are also mad at you, because you're the only one talking to them, the others are hiding, you represent the whole school for them, and you do nothing effective. Everybody hates you, troublemaker. You get punished, and that helps nobody.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

To think, the kid was the team Captain. Imagine how bad the bench warmers go it???

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It's 2013, and still too many people in authority (and sadly, maybe a few parents) still think this is how to mold a young person into a model Japanese citizen.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

basketball team which the 47-year-old teacher had coached since 1994. The teacher is currently on suspension....¡¡poor teacher!!!!. An student died;mother lost her sun. The newspaper publish the notice but the teacher is only resting at home. Mr. Hashimoto is right: this is unacceptable. We must say (at leat): no more teachers like this person.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Another wammy for teachers working in the Osaka public education system. Watch their salary decrease to that of a Lawson part-timer.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Mindless deference to Japan's geritocracy is killing people - usually young people, if not their bodies then their spirit.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In the mid to late 90's I worked 6 years at two schools coaching basketball all the way through. Slowly, I was given more responsibility and became the head coach of the boys team at a strong sports school in Tokyo in my 3rd year. This story really hits home for me and brings back feelings I haven't had in a while. This is a complex problem and the use of corporal punishment and my refusal to employ it in my coaching style was a big factor in me deciding to leave and stop coaching in Japan. I saw many things that would make your jaw drop but everybody (at the school and outside) knew what went on and nodded with knowing smiles when the subject came up. When I brought up the fact that this behavior would get them fired in the U.S. the coaches at my school often responded by calling the punishment 愛情 "sign of love" or would tell me something like "It's worse in Korea".

All of this behavior indirectly supported and encouraged that type of relationship between the coaches and players. I think there is one story I can add from my experience that may be interesting to hear. One December at a bonenkai with the parents of the players and the coaches, everybody was pretty drunk and having a good time singing karaoke when a group of three mothers pulled me off to the side. The leader stuffed a 10,000 yen note in my pocket and told me that if he son ever acted up that I should hit him to help him "learn/understand". The others nodded in agreement and laughed while telling me stories about how deviant their sons behavior could be and how bad they were at home. The message was clear, they were fine with me physically punishing their sons, even encouraging it... I think there is a lot of blame to go around with the coach and school principal at the top of the list, but also looks like several parents also knew, as far back as Sept. 2011, but didn't have the nerve to do something drastic enough to change the behavior. I'm not sure parents understand how much leverage they have with coaches. The coaches need their star players to win games and help keep/build their reputation... The really sad thing is that it takes a suicide for this discussion to even take place and my guess is that once the media attention dies down, it won't be long before it's all forgotten, and things go back to the norm.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The boy told his mother that he had been slapped by the teacher 30-40 times on the day before he committed suicide, Fuji TV reported.

Even in Japan, where the justice system is third-world in many respects, and bullying by teachers, coaches, buchos, even parents, is ignored, this has to be considered a crime -- it is assault by any definition. Football coaches in the states get fired just for grabbing a player's face mask for example. Hell, Bob Knight, the third winningest college basketball coach of all time got canned for his conduct. And the fact that the principal and two assistant coaches ignored what was going on is disgusting. The wonderful WA and sense of cultural unity that Japan is so proud of has lots of serious consequeces/problems when you scrape off the veneer. And this kind of abuse/bullying is at the top of that list.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

****Sometime,Japanese way of life is the cause of some of the problem.As the child have already told the parent,why they couldn't take action before hand?.Now that the child is dead,who is the looser?.And the school authority has to be punish because of theire stagnant action to the teacher.And Japanese should be educating their children that suicide is not the best way to solve a problem.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wow...it's quite obvious you lot have never played junior football or AAA rep hockey. Until I saw a video of the coach smacking this kid I would not judge. Tough love is the norm in high level junior sports. Man, my coaches would be viewed as criminals today. I don't condone his methods and the coach should be reprimanded ..... but I would also bet you would find other perhaps subtle behavioral red flags along the road in investigating why this kid took his own life.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

David Hearn,

...my guess is that once the media attention dies down, it won't be long before it's all forgotten, and things go back to the norm.

I believe you hit the nail on the head there. In Japan, many "unpleasantries" seem to be dealt with in a similar manner. So they apologize, stall, drag the matter weeks or months and then it's back to the same old way. I really can't stand that. I don't think this teacher will be fired. He will, in traditional style, be put away in another position, perhaps shuffling papers and the whole problem will solve itself, either by him quitting or by the public forgetting it ever happened.

Cos,

Not really. Some spoke up in this case. They reported the teacher. Hashimoto speaks up.

Hashi doesn't speak up. He says what he thinks people want to hear. That is how populism works. Then the herd applaud him for being outspoken and brave. I am dangerously close to mentioning some Godwin's Law speak here... No one spoke up. They might have mentioned it, but to speak up means standing by your words, demanding responsible parties be held accountable. To chitchat with your colleagues over some bento and go into the principal's office in a group of 5 is not speaking up. They held a 15 minute conversation with the guy. That shows just how serious they take it. What can be said in 15 minutes im a country where long, pointless meatings are the norm. Nothing.

And what does Shinzo Abe have to do with this? Why would he get engaged in a case like this? There are people who are more closely connected and they are the ones who should take action, once an for all.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

i happen to actually like hashimotos response but lets get to the root of the problem ban the kohai senpai system let these kids use their brain for once without fear of retribution

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

These kind of attitudes by the teachers in Japan just showed you the old militray type discipline and culture of Japanese. The Board of Education Officials, Principals, Teachers not to mention students know what is happening in their schools ever since but zipped their mouth to avoid retaliations. For them, probably, reporting the wrong system is "Mendoksai" and might cause them their job. I pity those kids trying their best for the school and coach glory in competitions. I guess humane treatment in coaching is not a vocabulary of this person. But mere compulsions. With this case, to the Minister and Board of Education, as the Japanese say GAMBATTE in correcting the system.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The boy told his mother that he had been slapped by the teacher 30-40 times on the day before he committed suicide, Fuji TV reported.

And the mother did nothing?

How can you hear such a thing from your son, and sit idly by?

As a mother I can't fathom it. Truly.

Although the coach is the aggressor, he had many accomplices...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

i notice a scary trend of mob mentality that we see in places like the Middle East or India. I don't disagree with Hashimoto on this one but everyone is quick in blaming the school and the coach. While they are held accountable and punished , so should the 2 mute by-standing junior coaches and ALSO the mother. How could the mother let a 30-40 time slap fest slip by? Most mothers I know would have brought the roof of the school down for that

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No one spoke up.

The article is wrong then ? This :

the education board said it had received complaints from other parents about the teacher

It's not speaking up ?

There are people who are more closely connected and they are the ones who should take action

Sure. But if they don't. The school director should have done something about that teacher, he didn't. The BOE (that knew) should have done something about that director, and the teacher, they didn't. And that's systematic. Speak up ? chant up ? shout up ? scream up ?

And what does Shinzo Abe have to do with this?

Who is above the BOEs in the hierarchy ? People have to complain to who if not to the Ministers in charge ? The parents can try to sue the teacher for abuse, the school for negligence and the BOE for negligence, but that doesn't seem to work. The legal complaints don't seem to be accepted before some dramatic consequences occur, and even then, cases are investigated and judged as they should and as they would if that was a private school because the BOEs are allowed to do their own police and justice. Like the Catholic church. Only the government and the Minister of Education have the power to make the boards of education take their responsibility, change their policy, impose the change on school directors. When a business dysfunctions chronically, I blame the management. When it's a public service, I also blame their management.

Why would he get engaged in a case like this?

it's not "a case". It's a few dozens of cases for one teacher, and two such teachers in one school. And there is one case of school like that that gets media exposure every single month. You can read testimonies of other commentators. It's not about "cases" but regular practice of a big national public service.

He says what he thinks people want to hear. That is how populism works.

Yes that's politics. He is not in charge for this case. The BOE are not under Hashimoto's authority (he complains enough about it), so he only talks like you and me. The only action possible is from the Monbusho.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry folks, I have been agreeing with Mr.Hashimoto from the start! Proud to have stuck by my guns, and proud to say that I have agreed with him way before this, but not to throw it in the face of all of the Hashimoto bashers who suddenly are getting a "change of heart" whether we disagree with Mr.Hashimoto or agree NOTHING will bring back the LIFE of this high school boy. I do hope this stupid teacher, basketball coach etc..ALL GET FIRED and yes also get ARRESTED!! This kind of abuse HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PROPER EDUCATION, and if it is worse in Korea?? Well so is there SUICIDE RATE, so surprise, surprise!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

but not to throw it in the face of all of the Hashimoto bashers who suddenly are getting a "change of heart" whether we disagree with Mr.Hashimoto or agree

Look even bad people do good sometimes and good people bad. Just because Hashimoto hit a sound bite that people could appreciate or understand doesn't automatically mean that everyone now has had a change of heart about him overall.

Bottom line, it's a cultural thing, and many people see nothing wrong with it as long as the consequences do cause someone to commit suicide. This so called "coach" won a number of inter-high All Japan Basketball tournaments hence parents, teachers, BOE's, nearly everyone, thinking that his way "works".

His prior record of achievements is going to assist him in getting a lighter sentence when all is said and done. And if you notice all Hashimoto is bitching about is the investigation first, and not the methods really.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

On a side note, I was completely shocked to discover that both of my very middle of the road and mild mannered sisters-in-law voted for this guy in the last election. Their vote was because he is 'good for children', apparently having a few himself and views that please mothers immensely as a result. This kind of attack by him could be seen as further evidence of that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Should definitely be in the "crime" section. This is criminal in all aspects.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Their vote was because he is 'good for children', apparently having a few himself and views that please mothers immensely as a result.

Besides screwing around on his wife, I wonder what other redeeming factors your sisters-in-law found in him?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow, that's a first -- I actually agree with Hashimoto! The teacher should be taken to a sumo stable where the wrestlers could line up to slap him 30 to 40 times before being sacked and prosecuted for assault.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Some teachers are undercover sadists? Make it a rule that a teacher may only practise self-defense. And never abuse power in attacking a student physically or mentally.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

On TV tonight, a star sportsman revealed how he was struck by baseball bats until his butt swelled so he couldn't sit on his bicycle saddle. Lucky he didn't meet with a traffic accident. Those who struck him would be guilty of indirect murder. Society should shame physically abusive people. Hitting is not authoritative or right but the mark of a frustrated, hating bully.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Unfortunately this type of incident will happen again and again. Japan's education system is archaic and is in serious need of reform. You have to really feel for the kid, he was in need of help, even expressed his pain to his parents but it appears no one really cared. As it is with many school team sports in Japan, the coaches methods and disciplinary actions are agreed upon by the parents before they enter the club. So his parents endorsed this corporal punishment style of discipline, the school principle endorsed it and the Ministry of Education, who employs the coach endorsed it, all by failing to take any serious preventative action to protect students. All are accountable and yet nothing will happen. Just another kid who couldn't cope with the system, a statistic. The coach is criminally responsible and should be charged.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm going to have to say it's a culture thing. Back when I was in elementary school, corporal punishment was still acceptable in the U.S. but by the time I reached high school the tide had turned. When it was acceptable, both the school board and the parents condoned it. When it became unacceptable, there was a period of "re-adjustment" as school employees who were not adapting were slowly weeded out. I have to say that none of us kids ever committed suicide over it when the staff DID cross the line. It seems to me that this is where Japan is right now - caught between the "old-school" and "new-school" way of thinking in regards to punishment. For us, the change-over happened around the mid-70's. For Japan, I guess 40 years later isn't THAT bad.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It appears that Hashimoto upon meeting with the boy's family offered his apologies both personal and on behalf of Osaka city and stated that he regrets having been supportive of corporal punishment prior to this incident and that he will correct his position.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

, the coaches methods and disciplinary actions are agreed upon by the parents before they enter the club. So his parents endorsed this corporal punishment style of discipline, the school principle endorsed it and the Ministry of Education, who employs the coach endorsed it, all by failing to take any serious preventative action to protect students.

I think there is a very clear line between corporal punishment and abuse. The former serves to correct behavioral defects in pupils displaying antisocial behaviors. I have no problem with that whatsoever. When it becomes habitual, and also in a performance related context it serves no purpose whatsoever other than to act as a stress release agent for the perpetrator. I haven't seen what the parents "agreed" to, but I doubt that any parent would subscribe their kids to such a brutal regime. Can't believe that a child died in this manner - just disgraceful.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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