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McDonalds’ branch in Kanagawa bans entire school from entering restaurant

59 Comments
By Casey Baseel, SoraNews24

The McDonald’s branch in the Tana neighborhood of the town of Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture, is just a four-minute walk from Tana Junior High School. That seems like it’d be a plus for the fast-food restaurant, what with the prospect of groups of kids coming in with their friends to grab a burger, soda, or sweet snack on their way home from school.

But it turns out that there was an extremely unpleasant side to the McDonald’s branch becoming an after-school hangout spot, and they’ve now banned each and every student from the school, which is 300 meters away, from entering the restaurant.

▼ Tana McDonald’s

Screen-Shot-2023-07-26-at-7.47.17.png

This came to the general public’s attention earlier this month, when a tweet went viral showing a written notice posted inside the Tana McDonald’s which says:

"To our customers,

Thank you always for choosing to visit our restaurant.

The inconsiderate behavior by junior high school students has become a nuisance to other customers, and has created a concern for the physical safety of our workers.

Therefore, we are barring students from Sagamihara Tana Municipal Junior High School from entering out our restaurant, the Sagamihara Tana McDonald’s branch.

We ask for your understanding and cooperation in ensuring a safe and secure experience for our customers."

The notice offers no specific details as to what kind of behavior led to the decision, but in speaking to reporters about the situation, the school’s vice principal has described the students’ actions as sawagu, meaning to be loud and boisterous. Multiple incidents in which students from the school caused disturbances took place during last school year (the Japanese school year ends/starts in spring), including ones in which teachers and police officers were called to rein in the unruly kids.

Though the tweet, which can be seen here, only recently went viral, the vice-principal first became aware of the restaurant’s mass banning of the school’s students “one or two months ago.” The Tana McDonald’s initiated the ban after discussing the situation with both the school and the police, says the chain’s public relations department, and the school has not made any public attempt to contest it. Ostensibly, the ban would be enforced by refusing entry to any individuals wearing the school’s uniform,

The exact number of students who were involved in the incidents is unknown, but realistically it couldn’t have been the case that every kid from the school is a trouble-maker, and with the problems having occurred last school year, some of the ones who were bothering the staff and other customers most likely no longer attend the school.

All the same, the ban is still in place, and the school’s administrators have been having discussions with their students about showing proper courtesy when in a place of business and speaking with service industry employees.

Source: Maido na NewsJ-cast NewsAsahi Shimbun Digital

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© SoraNews24

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

59 Comments
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I'd say it would be more the parents duty to instill some basic social etiquette into their off-spring but it is true that the kiddies go bonkers for a Macy-D. After all who doesn't love a peaceful Big Mac set once in a while.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

This is the result of spoiling kids and lowering the standards of social behavior to fit their attitude. Good on McDs to not just ban one but all for their unruly behavior.

35 ( +44 / -9 )

Good! If you can’t behave then you don’t need to go to any public business establishment, get some food from a local conbini and go sit in a park. Can’t blame Mikey D’s for this decision.

32 ( +38 / -6 )

Every past and present JHS ALT is nodding their head in concurrence here. A shared but mighty foe! Hehe

Ideally though there’s a capable adult on hand with a stern word to deal with the individual ringleaders, but well, you know….. Japan. They either under-react or over-react.

No more happy meals for that school sounds like shooting yourself in the foot. Probably not the best business ( or life ) strategy to let children get the better of you! A litmus test for common sense.

Where’s Ronald when you need him ay?

-8 ( +9 / -17 )

Good. Kids shouldn't be eating this crap anyway. They've done the kids a favour.

12 ( +26 / -14 )

impossible to eat, talk on the phone, much less read or work in some of these stores

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

Slightly improved, slightly, but loitering here in Japan is outright a past time.

No purchase after a certain time limit, you're out.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

100% agree in this case, some poor mannered kids and adults are jamming McDonalds and Starbucks where I live can't even enjoy a meal after 2pm, in many cases can't even find a seat when these kids and rude adults camp inside all afternoon.

24 ( +25 / -1 )

Make it a Take-Out Only, great way to save money and keep the place clean .

10 ( +12 / -2 )

My home, my rules. Never presume you can behave like you would in your home (unless you're well behaved and educated). Fully supporting this McDonalds' decision. A bunch of rude idiots can cost them serious business.

21 ( +21 / -0 )

Ostensibly, the ban would be enforced by refusing entry to any individuals wearing the school’s uniform

Cue the kids going home to get changed first.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

This is a human rights violation that only seems possible in Japan. You can't ban a whole group of people like that because of the actions of a few individuals (who are probably no longer at the school or have changed their attitude)

No it's not and of course they can, it's their business - they set the standards for how they expect customers to behave in their space, not the other way around.

People have become so obsessed with their 'rights' that they have completely forgotten about their responsibilities - which is clearly very important in this country.

Good on them.

31 ( +33 / -2 )

This is a human rights violation that only seems possible in Japan.

These students flooding Mac Donalds and Saizeriya by 3pm are noisier than a flock of crows, I go to Mac at least 3x month as they're the most readily available 'oasis' to take a break and cool down after you finish your job somewhere out in the sticks but sometimes you can hear the screams from the 2nd floor the moment you open the goddamn door, how can someone stay there for even 1 minute, I just take my order and eat in the car.

16 ( +19 / -3 )

Took my son to McD in Tokyo yesterday and at least 2 tables for 4 persons were occupied by a single student or adult doing work or homework. Some customers stood there waiting to sit. Should not use such a place as your office.

24 ( +24 / -0 )

good for kids health.

they will eat less of McSomething...

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

I seem to recall the merchants adjacent my high school nearly fifty years ago being less than happy to serve crowds of students at lunch time. There were disputes. Some stores only allowed a small number of our students in at one time. That applied after school too.

I've been known to say the most destructive force in nature is teenagers and used to comment about there being what I called a "trash gradient" around high schools, the closer to the school the more trash discarded in people's yards and storefronts. I would never buy a home close to a high school or middle school

Unsupervised teenagers can be disruptive and destructive. Nothing new, and not confined to Japan. Groups of teenagers are the worst. Oh, but there is maybe one even more disruptive force, and that is mothers jockying for position to drop their demon spawn off at school and pick them up in the afternoon. Kids learn from the adults in their lives and the things I've seen parents do in the drop zone are as bad as what their unsupervised kids do in a group. Some of these mothers, I swear their eyes roll back into their heads like sharks at a feeding frenzy when dropping their kids off. It's scary.

21 ( +22 / -1 )

Older people can’t stand noise and are even bothered by the sound of good laughter. The elderly in Japan want peace and quiet so much they’ll protest against building elementary schools in their neighborhoods citing noise disturbance.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

Do the same for onsens, god it is annoying having to hear the screams when I'm trying to peacefully relax and unwind in a spa with hot springs and saunas. Lots of college and under kids coming in herds on a mission to ruin my day.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

My guess is the comedians on tv are to blame. They instill the notion that loud = funny

13 ( +18 / -5 )

This is a human rights violation that only seems possible in Japan.

The human rights of the workers and other customers were surely being violated, and this should take priority. Having taught at lower level Japanese junior high schools myself, I can only imagine how bad these kids were (given that police officers had to be called in). I have seen junior high school students smoke in the classroom during class, destroy school property, bully other students, and disrespect school staff.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

I complained to Makdo HQ that obviously underaged students were smoking in on the premises of my local Makdo. (Japan was one of the world's first countries to outlaw public smoking by minors, having done so back in the Meiji Period.) The branch took immediate action, posting signs and patrolling the outdoor patio area, but I wonder why store management disregarded it until I made a formal complaint in writing to the company headquarters.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

realistically it couldn’t have been the case that every kid from the school is a trouble-maker

Oh no, there’s also quite a probability for that nowadays, and even if not there, but in some other countries for sure.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Nihon Enigma Today 08:58 am JST does have a good point. Ultimately, this is no different from for example banning non-Japanese in onsen or not renting apartments to them on grounds they have an increased estimated probability of causing problems.

So you can choose between one or another position, either to respect the seller/lessor's right to free contracting (sales are also contracts) and to protect the sanctity of their spaces or to insist that everyone be given the benefit of the doubt and treated as individuals rather than a stereotyped collective.

But you shouldn't have different answers for each scenario.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

It's unfortunate they don't have somewhere better to go.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Can hardly believe that this is legal in Japan, to ban 100% of students from a determined school when very few are making too much noise. It is a problem when managers do not know how to solve a problem by talking to the young students, had no initiative to go to the school director. It is a surprise that Mac Donald's senior staff support this type of attitude, as it is clearly not good for business in the immediate and long term as it discriminate all students of a school due to the bad behavior of a few.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

it is clearly not good for business in the immediate and long term as it discriminate all students of a school due to the bad behavior of a few.

Is it clearly not good for business? That's not clear to me. This may turn into more customers coming to this McDonalds at that time of day knowing it won't have swarms kids being loud and obnoxious in it, and result in much higher profits.

I don't know McDonald's profit system though, nor this specific branch, so it's not clear to me that this bad for business as you state.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

They should start with an apology.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is fairly common practice - back in the 1990s in school in Northern Ireland, our school was banned from places for unruly behavoir and even cases of shoplifting.

Makes sense.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

My guess is the comedians on tv are to blame. They instill the notion that loud = funny

I agree TV shows here comedians seem to compete to laugh/talk the loudest, it definitely has an influence on groups, especially jnr/highschool.

The Mcd should place the ban for 2 yrs or so- by then the offending generation may be gone.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Schools that care about their reputation, especially private schools, often have rules stating that students cannot go to places such as fast food and family restaurants and karaoke wearing their school uniform unless they are with their parents. My daughter's school had such a rule and I never saw students from her school in a McDonalds, Gusto or similar in the area we lived, which was close to the school. Students from others schools were was there though, often acting loudly and obnoxiously. Fair play to this McDonalds for trying to improve the atmosphere for the majority of customers.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This is a human rights violation that only seems possible in Japan. You can't ban a whole group of people like that because of the actions of a few individuals (who are probably no longer at the school or have changed their attitude)

This comment was censored surely because not Japanese like enough approach.

I was an educated and always polite JHS.

My kids are the same. Why would they be banned from somewhere for wearing an uniform ?

Is that logical and common sense ? Not in any way for sensible people.

Can MCdonalds ban let's say you for wearing yellow socks ? Or specific shoes ?

No totally illegal.

Punish all those who have unruly behavior.

And parents are first to blame, not school.

Those JHS will go somewhere else and carry on their bad behavior because anyone with any minimal common sense know that it won't affect them.

Educate kids, do not let them unscathed or it will get worse later !

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Good for the kids. McDonald is junk and expensive. Wish it was opposite. Jaoaneee schools banning students from McDonald’s.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

There has to be an amicable solution. Banning a revenue stream is counter productive.

The students have money to spend, but as students can be a nuisance especially if they hang out with a happy meal between six. No profit in that.

So to take Mark above suggestion...... take out..........

Depending on the McDonald’s layout, what about a student serving hatch adjacent, or to the rear of the building. Of course the danger of littering, a few bins could deal with that.

J Harry Potter and co have money to spend, they inhabit my favorite Konbini, they don't communicate without shouting at each other, as if they are streets apart.

They are unable to queue in any organized fashion. They huddle, giggling, its irritating, but understandable.

We have all been their once.

I sometime talk to them in English pointing to stuff, eyes appear to pop out,.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Congratulations Sagamihara, Kanazawa Golden Arches (GA) Mac. I am sure those kids are not purchasing their worth but using your business as a hangout. Unfortunately, it happens in many places but I am behind you 110%. I would have the school write to every student's parent, whether they are part of the group hanging out or not, and have them together with their children apologize IN PERSON to the business. If we want to have children become good and honorable citizens, then we should correct the problem now. We all make mistakes but unfortunately, some of them can never realize the wrong from the right even as they become adults and parents themselves. And besides, there are 7-11, Family Mart, Lawson, etc. to buy snacks and eat as they walk home. I wish we had all the convi stores, I would never go back to GA.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I thought Junior High School students weren't allowed to go to any place

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Excellent move by the big M.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

That's what happens when parents do not teach their kids what is right/wrong nor how to behave in public! That is parents job not school's!!!!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Good, let’s start eating healthy.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Look, they are customers in school uniform.

The business model canvas.

A fast food restaurant four-minute walk from a Junior High School.

The task at hand is how to separate the potential, well, inevitable Junior High School hangout infesting a small fast food establishment, from the a nuisance factor to other customers.

To achieve this is to calculate opportunities to provide a service to both without either activities interfering the ambiance of the fast food restaurant.

The students have revenue, so the business model needs to identify how to increase the revenue stream from them individually.

Now to achieve this will require them to stand in a line and pick up their orders......

A student drive through.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I don't see any school unforms just customers with money to spend, wheelbarrow loads, four minutes walk away.

So it is a question of filling the tills and lobbying them to deposit the waste in the bins provided and move on.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I see a lot of comments basically saying these JHS students are customers with money to spend or a revenue stream etc. The point is that, as McDonalds know, is that they DON'T spend that much money. Mostly they spend a couple of hundred yen and then stay there for ages annoying potential repeat customers who spend a lot more.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Precisely, limespider, the business deals with the orders outside the premises.

They buy eat or walk.

If necessary you have an person/s to move along the stragglers.

It is the colour of the money that counts.

Combing the queue.

Keeping them on there toes.

Trust me, politely point out that they buy or they walk away.

And you make sure they remain outside the restaurant.

In other words you are not denying customers, you are making sure they empty purses.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

McDonald's is not to everybody's culinary enjoyment.

Trying to ban a high school student from fast food is akin to banning a Sunday succor team from kicking a football.

Besides it is not the fast food, high school students need to hang out.

So a fast food establishment four minutes away is second to the holy grail.

I am a business women, with a successful business,

You either adapt or die, it is simple as that.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

quercetumToday 10:03 am JST

Older people can’t stand noise and are even bothered by the sound of good laughter. The elderly in Japan want peace and quiet so much they’ll protest against building elementary schools in their neighborhoods citing noise disturbance.

I'm an older person, and like the majority of older people I suffer hearing loss. So noise and the sound of 'good' laughter (is there any other kind???) don't bother me. I'll agree with you that some seniors In Japan protest schools and kindergartens being built or operated next to their homes are intolerant of such things, but don't throw us all under the same bus. I live on a dead-end street, otherwise known as a cul-de-sac, and there are almost a dozen youngsters in neighbouring homes. They play hockey and basketball out there, and on several occasions I've given them packages of sidewalk chalk so they can express their artistic desires. In my opinion, you either love kids because you were once one, or you've forgotten what it was like. And to me, that's a pity.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

And I agree wholeheartedly with the restaurant's action.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Banned from McDs. Can there be any lower form of public humiliation?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

impossible to eat, talk on the phone, much less read or work in some of these stores

Not really sure fast food stores are supposed to be places to chat on phones, read or work.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japan is one of the few countries where you can go to a place like MDs and sit there all afternoon ordering one item only. People doing homework, office work, whatever.

Other parts of the world enforce a time limit for customers. Not actively eating? Goodbye.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

McDonald's doesn't contribute anything worthwhile to anyone or the environment.

I imagine it provides a means of making a living for many people.

ordering one item only

And often it's a small coffee.

I've seen school kids (JHS or HS) being a little overly noisy and messing around with each other in McDonald's before, but most are well-behaved and get on with their business of absorbing calories to music, chat or homework. Once, the staff just had a quick word with the overexcited kids and they apologized and calmed down. The Tana kids must have gone far and beyond the call of doody to get everyone from their school banned.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Other parts of the world enforce a time limit for customers. Not actively eating? Goodbye.

Huh? People hang out in McDonalds all over the world. I have never seen a time limit at any McDonalds.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

People studying in coffee shops is very annoying. I want to spend money and enjoy a drink but I can't because the tables are blocked.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Huh? People hang out in McDonalds all over the world. I have never seen a time limit at any McDonalds.

All that means is you have not seen them. Does not mean they don't exist.

Just google time limit McDonalds.

Typical sign says No Loiterimg Please. Time limit 30 minutes while eating food. I see it in some places where senior decide to sit in the establishment gabbing for hours on end leaving no tables for customers (and typically ordering nothing but one seniors coffee at a discount)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

All that means is you have not seen them. Does not mean they don't exist.

Very possible. Do you have some links to support the widespread usage of these signs in McDonalds? Or a company policy anywhere?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is one of the few countries where you can go to a place like MDs and sit there all afternoon ordering one item only. People doing homework, office work, whatever.

Other parts of the world enforce a time limit for customers. Not actively eating? Goodbye.

They already purchased an item, some will purchase more depending on how long they stay, but all the MD I visited globally, you just have kids hanging out an studying, why would the largest fast food chain on the planet push out one of their main customer base??

The kids as paying customers is not the issue, giving them a time limit is not the issue, the issue is public conduct and behavior, other people want to eat in peace without all the rowdiness, if these kids don’t get loud, rude and obnoxious this wouldn’t be a story. Making that decision is not something they don’t want to do out of spite, believe me, but they can’t lose more of their base if parents or kids that follow rules go to a different location that is less chaotic.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

All that means is you have not seen them. Does not mean they don't exist.

Just google time limit McDonalds. 

Typical sign says No Loiterimg Please. Time limit 30 minutes while eating food. I see it in some places where senior decide to sit in the establishment gabbing for hours on end leaving no tables for customers (and typically ordering nothing but one seniors coffee at a discount)

True--have seen these.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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