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Outrage grows over Shiga school's inaction over bullying

109 Comments

The junior high school in Otsu, Shiga Prefecture, attended by a 13-year-old boy who committed suicide after suffering from bullying, held a meeting Thursday night for parents and guardians.

The high-profile case has sparked a debate in Japan over bullying and the role of schools, boards of education and the city government in protecting children from bullies. The school principal and Otsu Board of Education superintendent attended the meeting and apologized to around 700 parents for inadequacies in their investigation of the circumstances that led up to the boy's death, Fuji TV reported.

However, parents in attendance complained that the people responsible for the investigation were not present at the meeting and that the information offered was not getting to the heart of the matter. In response, the city government has announced that it is to allow parents to peruse the results of two questionnaires that were distributed to students following the boy's death, Fuji reported.

The questionnaires are at the center of a growing furor over the school's lack of action to stop the bullying.

The boy leapt to his death last October from an apartment building in Otsu. Shortly after, it came to light that bullies routinely forced him to “practice” killing himself before he took his own life, and that his teacher brushed off the abuse as a joke.

After the boy's death, the school asked students to respond to a questionnaire on bullying. Fuji TV reported that more than 60 students answered that they had seen the boy being bullied in the three weeks before he committed suicide. According to the answers, three bullies punched the boy in the toilet, forced him to eat dead bees, pulled down his pants and taped his mouth.

Initially, the school said it did not think the bullying was a direct cause of the boy's death, but after news of the questionnaire was leaked, school officials conceded that bullying may have been responsible, Fuji reported. In the second survey, conducted in November, some students reported seeing the bullies forcing the boy to take part in a mock funeral.

Meanwhile, NHK reported that after the first questionnaire results came out last October, the school coerced the boy's parents into signing a confidentiality agreement before it would let them see the results. The boy's father signed the document but was outraged when he read the account of what had happened to his son, NHK reported.

Public indignation has grown over the case, resulting in a series of bomb threats against the school and the local government over claims of negligence in the case. A letter sent to the school earlier this week threatened that the building would be bombed unless the pupils and teachers involved apologize, local authorities said.

“The school called police Monday after receiving a threat in the mail, which demanded pupils and teachers involved in the bullying publicly apologize,” a local police officer said.

In a rare move, Shiga prefectural police visited the school on Wednesday and Thursday in an attempt to ascertain if there was a link between the bullying and the suicide, Sankei Shimbun reported. The police are questioning the boy's classmates, as well as the three boys named as the bullies.

The father of the boy has also criticized police over the case. After the questionnaire results were made public, he went to the police but said they refused to accept the complaint on three occasions, claiming that complaints cannot be lodged in the event that the victim is deceased and was not murdered. They also said the boy left no suicide note indicating what might have driven him to kill himself.

National Police Agency Commissioner General Yutaka Katagiri said in Tokyo on Thursday that although it is difficult for police to prevent bullying, they need to be more vigilant and take bullies into custody in order to prevent injury or loss of life, TBS reported.

© Japan Today

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109 Comments
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"Apologize or we will bombb the school"

How about kick the kids who bullied him out of school! Or some other kind of punishment. (If they were doing that kind of stuff how about suspend them or lower their grades before the kid commits suicide...)

I am on the fence on firing the teacher tho. Bullies are smart, how much did he really know? The kid talked to his teacher, but what exactly did he say? Maybe fire the teacher but maybe some re-education discipline would be enough..

This is on national news.

The mayor looks upset and will probably try to get it resolved. She was elected in Jan or Feb (Suicide was last fall), though, and she's young, so for those reasons may not have power... FYI for those who can't understand tv

1 ( +2 / -1 )

After the questionnaire results were made public, he went to the police but said they refused to accept the complaint on three occasions, claiming that complaints cannot be lodged in the event that the victim is deceased and was not murdered.

As if the parents haven't gone through enough already, they don't need this slap in the face from the police. Absolutely disgusting... if repeated psychological and physical abuse that drives a person to kill themselves isn't a crime, then I don't know what is.

The three bullies should, at the very least, be locked up in juvenile detention.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

This is getting ugly. Probably the worst case of bullying I have heard about.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

This is getting ugly.

True, but people need to get angry for this to make the news and promote change. Japan needs to do something about this. Let's hope the child's death will not be in vain.

10 ( +9 / -0 )

@papasmurf

As if the parents haven't gone through enough already, they don't need this slap in the face from the police.

Don't blame the cops; their hands are tied. Blame the idiot politicians who made the law.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Initially, the school said it did not think the bullying was a direct cause of the boy’s death, but after news of the questionnaire was leaked, school officials conceded that bullying may have been responsible, Fuji reported.

Seriously? Why else would a 13-year old take his own life?

And what kind of kid teaches another kid how to "practice" killing himself? That's fricking insane!

Good on the parents for putting their foot down and demanding correct actions be taken. We all know the Japanese aren't good at taking responsiblity but I hope this will be the start of real action.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

This is getting ugly. Probably the worst case of bullying I have heard about.

Getting ugly? It's been ugly from the start, it's just that now people are hearing about it and the pressure is building for action to be taken against the perpetrators. The teacher is VERY much responsible for brushing off the student. He had both a moral and professional responsibility to investigate the claim. If he did nothing he should be fired post haste!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Well now that we know the police won't do anything, it is time for boy's parents, friends, and other community members to bully the school principal, teachers, superintendent and members of Otsu Board of Education. Bully them until maybe they will jump off the buildings or throw themselves onto the train tracks. This BS bullying won't stop in Japan because parents of those bullying students don't care, the schools and teachers don't care, and the police certainly don't care.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

It's horrible to see how much concern this school has for its reputation...not for the quality of their education, the safety of the students, or even for morality, but simply for their reputation. This is one of the negative repercussions of having competitive admissions for JH schools, complete with rankings and entrance exams.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why aren't the parents of the bullies being dragged through the mud?! They raised the little monsters from birth, not a few teachers who have limited contact.

Why did dad have to find out from the school what happened to his son?! Why didn't this poor child have communication with his parents that he could tell them the hell he was being put through?!

People are so quick to blame the schools, the teachers but do the math folks. How much time do teachers spend with students vs how much time parents do. How many students to teachers have in one year vs how many kids parents have. How busy are teachers vs your average stay at home parent. None if this adds up to be the "fault" of the teachers. Yes, the teachers should have done more but what would you like them to do? Parents have pretty much taken all their power away. They can't give detentions, the cant kick students out of class, they can't really do much. Parents, on the otherhand can. Give teachers their power back and perhaps thing will change.

That being said, how can people here expect students not to bully when Japan is well known for its systematic bullying?! The adult bully each other so how can they expect the kids not to?! Wake up Japan. It shouldn't have taken this child dying to make an issue out of bullying. How many other kids and adults have killed themselves over bullying? Far too many. Too late, too little. Reactive, not proactive.

May that poor child rest in peace.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

I am on the fence on firing the teacher tho. Bullies are smart, how much did he really know? The kid talked to his teacher, but what exactly did he say? Maybe fire the teacher but maybe some re-education discipline would be enough..

Fire the damn teacher, it's so typical of Japanese teachers that they would ignore bullying even if it was occurring right in front of them. Actually the teachers in Japan are often the bullies themselves. You hear so many cases in Japan where the students were abused and bullied by the teachers. Where else would the bullies learn how to bully others. They must learn it from the adults around them.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

The police are questioning the boy’s classmates, as well as the three boys named as the bullies.

The teacher (s) who witnessed the bullying and did Nothing should be tried as an accessory to murder. The three instigators should be tried for murder. I doubt the parents of the students at that school will be satisfied with anything less then the incarceration of the perpetrators.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

And many of the teachers are victims themselves. Monster parents, PTA, school board... I've seen patents set out to destroy a teacher's career for punishing badly behaved students. Teachers can be victims too you know.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

lacabrasi

Don't blame the cops; their hands are tied. Blame the idiot politicians who made the law

It's the Police Association that forwards the laws to be passed. Blame them both but better to blame the school and local board of education.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

"The questionnaires are at the center of a growing furor over the school’s lack of action to stop the bullying."

Good. More rage needed. No more; no more fake apologies, no more systematic bowing, no more excuses and no more promises to do better in the future. Demand the meeting, get the names of the people who neglected their duties and refuse to act human, fire them without ceremony. And if it takes bomb threats to accomplish that, then so be it.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

In this case the teachers are not the victims, the young boy killed himself. He could not even tell his parents that he was being abused. Those Bully's had to have threatened him into keeping silent. Otherwise why would he keep silent about this. The teachers were NO help to him, they turned their collective backs to him, this is just horrible.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

"Initially, the school said it did not think the bullying was a direct cause of the boy’s death, but after news of the questionnaire was leaked, school officials conceded that bullying may have been responsible..."

You'd think that only after hearing this a few hundred times people would get sick of it and address a need for change in the system, but at least THIS time things are coming to a head. Hopefully the community does NOT let down, they leak the information in the questionnaires, and the rest of the nation becomes further outraged. There have been COUNTLESS deaths of this sort in Japan since I arrived here way back when, and it's almost always the same with denial, then admittance (but with other little denials in there), then at BEST someone retires. So far I haven't seen any changes, just more suicides caused by bullying.

The teacher should be fired and revoked of his/her license immediately, and face possible charges of negligence resulting in death. The principle and school admin, if proven they knew about it, should likewise be fired and revoked of their status. The students should be sent to reformatories until they reach twenty. The incident should be treated as a warning that no more of the same will be tolerated, and teachers and admin should be given more authority and disciplinary measures to deal with bullying. There should be ZERO tolerance of the latter, with students perhaps first suspended (and no, that doesn't mean coming and hanging out in the teacher's room all day!), then expelled permanently for a repeat offense.

It'd take years and years and heaps of monster parents and red tape to get through all this, of course, but best to start now or else start installing cameras in all the hallways and outside the school.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

While this is obviously an awful story, I am glad to see the country taking notice and people being vocal about this. As someone has said above, let's make sure this boy's death was not in vain.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Have bullies become more violent over the years or/and have parents' education become more nonexistent? There was always someone bigger in my class when i was growing up and i never heard of anyone committing suicide over it. On the other hand, kids have less and less support growing up nowadays - it's almost just tv and videogames.

Yes, those bullies are little monsters, but they're kids as well. Kids who didn't get slapped in the face when they should've 'cos it's considered violence against children these days, or because the parents just don't have time. Neither did the victim's parents have time for some emotional support, but that's speculation.

Blame the parents first, then the teachers and other related adults, then society in general, then the kids.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

take bullies into custody in order to prevent injury or loss of life

Are you serious? Locking up 13 year olds? What kind of solution is that?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Admitting to the problem is the first though most difficult step. When we don't own up to a problem, corrective action cannot start as the problem is out there. But because we are pros at justifying and deceiving ourselves, we make it harder on ourselves to learning and growing. Organizations and schools are no different--they are comprised of people just like you and I.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Rumor has it one of the bullies and their family packed up and moved to Kyoto.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Considering how the school acted, the child died in vain. The only change that will occur is that in the future, there will be no more questionnaires.

Japanese schools are not safe for children, not physically nor mentally.

4 ( +3 / -0 )

How much time do teachers spend with students vs how much time parents do

In JHS? Maybe10 times more than the parents. The kids on average probably see Mom or Dad for between 30 to 60 minutes in the AM when they wake up, rush off to school. Then the kids are at school, if they have club activities, sometimes until 8 PM or so, then off to juku until 11 PM get home eat, and repeat.

So on average, for many kids, the parents see their kids weekdays may 1 to 2 hours. While the teachers have them 8 to 12 hours or more. And THAT is no joke either.

4 ( +4 / -1 )

You'd think that only after hearing this a few hundred times people would get sick of it and address a need for change in the system,

Not here, no way, it's "that" school's problem and we are fine.....until the problem comes here.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Yubaru: Disagree with the statement. Why hold only the teacher responsible? Teachers cannot do everything. Fire or arrest the principal and superintendent. Police are not to blame on this one, but can surely arrest the students involved for "assault and battery" if over the age of 12. The parents of the bullies should be sued in civil court. Make an example to show Japan is really safe for all.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@gogogo They have juvenile detention centers which is like a big "time out" place. I heard that it's very quiet. Makes people think about what they did.

These bullies need to realize that what they did is wrong. It would be scary having these kids grow up knowing that they can get away with something like this. I know 13 is a young age but I'm pretty sure that I was already aware of what I was doing when I was 13. I'm pretty sure that while they were bullying the boy, they KNEW that bullying is bad (I learned that hurting others was bad at 5 or maybe younger?) and yet did it anyway.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

How can the school get away with this nonsense? How can bullies and their parents get away with this terrible behavior? This is beyond sad, it's just plain sick!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@Yubaru: Disagree with the statement. Why hold only the teacher responsible?

I never said that, I did say though that if the teacher knew about it he had a moral and professional responsibility to investigate. I have yet to comment about the parents, other teachers, administration, BOE, the bullies, and other students in the boys class for that matter.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

i think assaulting the boy numerous times would be considered a crime even here in japan, therefore, the police SHOULD have been involved no matter what they like to think.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I have to say that the intense public pressure is turning out to be a very good thing in this case because without it the school look as though they would try to bury their head in the sand, hope that it all goes away and not make any attempt to really address the problem. The public pressure is forcing them to deal with things properly, and hopefully that will have broader repercussions on the way bullying is percieved and dealt with across the board in the education system in Japan. I applaud the parents who are fighting this. The Japanese are often accused of passively sitting around accepting the status quo, but these folk are fighting the good fight here. More power to them.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

During my 13 years in Japanese high schools, the norm was for Japanese teachers to ignore bullying even if it was happening right in front of them. Is it a cultural thing? Also, am I right that one reason this case has become such big news is that the school is largely ethnically Korean and the dead boy was Japanese?

No matter. This happens everywhere in Japan, and needs to be tackled on a fundamental level. A start would be to actually punish bullies- forget the apologies and usual arse-covering hot air. Another idea would be to aggressively attack bullying at all levels- not just some silly poster campaign- head teachers, staff and students all jump on it the moment it appears, with harsh punishments- create a climate in which bullying cannot exist.

It was recently my pleasure to work in a very large secondary school in Ireland, and I was moved to remark on the lack of obvious problems (fights, bullying, general nastiness). I was told it all came down to the Head, who brooks no shit of any kind and has the perpetrators in his office immediately...and this in the presently PC climate in Europe. Impressive!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I do believe that in cases like this "old" school is far better than "new" school in dealing with bullies!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

As a parent I'd like for the people involved to be named and shamed and for the teachers involved to be sacked for incompetency for ignoring the bullying, and while it wouldn't happen I'd like the bullies involved to be hung.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

smithinjapan Very well said! I'd give you 100 thumbs-up if I could.

Growing-up in the U.S. I always heard in various media sources (and from my father who has visited several times) how the Japanese value Honor above all else. Where is the honor when a teacher fails to defend a weak student? Where is the honor in the police assuming that it was just a suicide and not investigating for possible manslaughter? Where???

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Growing-up in the U.S. I always heard in various media sources (and from my father who has visited several times) how the Japanese value Honor above all else.

Sorry but this is BS. This kind of thinking comes from people who watched Shogun or Last Samurai too many times.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

it just shows how weak society has become that this could happen.

even though all of these kids saw it going on, apparently they didn't tell their parents, or if they did, it's an even worse indication that none of the adult did anything.

and the poor kid apparently didn't talk to his parents about it out of shame or the like.

the negligent teacher and the bullies should be prosecuted in relation to the death, and the school should be prosecuted for trying to cover it up. If it is found that the police were negligent in not taking up the father's complaint, then the entire city government is probably just a corrupt morass, and they should be investigated.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Bazza

Also, am I right that one reason this case has become such big news is that the school is largely ethnically Korean and the dead boy was Japanese?

If that is the case, then it's possible that the bullies families are connected to yakuza organized crime groups, of which 30% are said to be ethnic koreans (60% burakumin, 10% japanese).

That might be part of the reason that the teachers were afraid to reprimand the bullies.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

13 years old is old enough for the young prison. Obviously their parents are incapable of education. lock em up I say till they remorse

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Send these bullies to a "scared straight" program in a US prison.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Often the leader of the bullies is clever at manipulating people. He/she learns how to manipulate his/her own parents, he forms a group of sidekicks who will do whatever he suggests, and he is able consciously or unconsciously to take advantage of the teacher's weaknesses, seen only to him or her in many cases. The kid may even have problem parents from hell, or belonging to a nefarious crime gang. The teacher will be exhausted by the overall teaching situation, may not be a strong disciplinarian, may feel powerless having such a group within his/her class and may just have hoped for the best, ie natural harmony asserting itself. After all, a different homeroom teacher may be responsible for them next year. The leader may even enjoy subtle challenges during class to show his/her power and to cause the teacher to lose face. The sidekicks will feel safer within the group, deadly afraid to even suggest breaking away, and will do even the unthinkable to protect their own status.

The kid who commits suicide will often be using his death to make a strong statement, feeling unable to articulate in any other way. Some might consider it a weakness, the easy way out. Suicide is an ever-present choice for Japanese school children, a much larger and more obvious option than in the West. Even their language and slang is different, with words associated with death (eg "Why don't you just die?") so common that they are usually banned by the authorities.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

thomas anderson-

I wrote that because i don't know what the teacher knew when, nor what the teacher did. It is possible he is deserving of criminal charges.

However, being a school teacher, it is really hard to understand the kids' world. Sometimes I have seen things that are clearly bullying, but I have also seen things that I thought were bullying but are actual friends, or the bullied and the bullier change roles in a group of friends such that in a few mos everyone's has been one or the other a couple of times.

We read in the news about rehearsing his funeral and being forced to put a dead sparrow in his mouth, it sounds easy to understand. If the teacher didn't see that and the kid just said " some kids are picking on me" the teacher may have not known it was so serious.

Or, maybe he did. Hence I am on the fence.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@realjapan-

and others who think this is not the police's fault,

maybe you didn't read the previous articles, but the head bully's dad was a former cop. the whole thing sounded like ppl covering for ppl from the get-go. the cops were stonewalling the father and saying there was no problem found at the school.

RE primarily korean school--

please be careful with sudden statements like that. if there's no evidence of this being a racial thing, we don't need to try and make it one. for on¥e thing, koreans can't become public officials here, which includes cops, which means the bully ringleader, son of a cop, is also jpns, or at least half jpns. of course he could have changed his nationality, but then so could the victim's family. we don't know any of that.

I think this is national news because of the eating sparrows and rehearsed suicide and other things that make ppl want to watch tv to see what will happen (i.e. sell).

It sounds to me like this is a case where the weak got tortured and the adults tried to cover each other as best they could. Abuse and ppl who can't take responsibility.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Lowly......

I wrote that because i don't know what the teacher knew when, nor what the teacher did

Did you actually read the article?

Shortly after, it came to light that bullies routinely forced him to “practice” killing himself before he took his own life, and that his teacher brushed off the abuse as a joke.

A so-called teacher brushed off a student who was forced to "practice" killing himself? If anyone calls themselves a teacher and allows their students even in jest ONCE to do something like this, and here it was ROUTINELY, they should quit the profession and find work somewhere else, preferably alone, and definitely NOT around children.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

please be careful with sudden statements like that. if there's no evidence of this being a racial thing, we don't need to try and make it one. for on¥e thing, koreans can't become public officials here, which includes cops, which means the bully ringleader, son of a cop, is also jpns, or at least half jpns. of course he could have changed his nationality, but then so could the victim's family. we don't know any of that.

Would you care to explain how Japanese and Koreans are different racially?

I think this is national news because of the eating sparrows and rehearsed suicide and other things that make ppl want to watch tv to see what will happen (i.e. sell).

Wrong answer, it's got nothing to do with this, the news hardly mentions this part, they do however discuss the lack of action by the school, BOE, and police to investigate this incident and they also discuss the public anger over the lack of action as well.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

In response, the city government has announced that it is to allow parents to peruse the results of two questionnaires that were distributed to students following the boy’s death, Fuji reported.

Thats the Japanese response to a scandal. Distribute countless questionnaires that will be ignored and then thrown in the trash after a week. Officials can then say they took action and all is forgotten again.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

yubaru-

Sorry I do think I misread that line. Still, we, at least I, don't know what the teacher knew when, also he hasn't been interviewed on tv (and hasn't even been going tot school, apparently) so until I can meet him I just can't form a complete opinion of him. As I said in my 1st post, maybe he's guilty of something criminal, maybe he should just be fired. I don't know.

"racially" sorry "ethnically" (though there are "racial" differences between jpns and kor, though really we should say "genetic" these days, due to the fact that this island chain was inhabited by several different "racial" or "ethnic" or "genetic" groups before the great migrations from Korea (Koryu) happened. Or tribes. Who have since mixed. Hope my explanation suffices.)

"wrong answer"- no I don't think so. I think the tabloid aspects of it are what draws the news to the story. Howeer what is changing on the story is the level of participation of the various public officials, their stories, their actions, etc. Now that the news outlets have been drawn to the story, the daily changing news keeps them busy. That's sort of how it works. They don't need to mention the salacious details except in passing anymore bc most ppl already know.

Hope that clears things up for you!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Most likely teachers wouldn't believe to the bullied students whenever they confide to their teachers. My friend from Osaka said he was bullied all his student life except university. To the extent he experienced leg and hand fracture due to it yet the school nor the tearcher didn't do any actions to reprimand the bullies.

Teachers and principal are afraid to suspend or expel the bullies at school. I asked many times to them but all their answers are same, bully couldn't be stopped and suspension and expulsion at school wouldn't help the bullies 'coz we're ruining their future. To add more, they're basically afraid to the parents.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Civilized society starts to break down when various parties fail to be accountable for their responsibilities.

Three times the father of the dead child went to the police station, and three times they refused to accept his complaint. The school conducted an investigation via a questionnaire, and so horrified were they by the gravity of what happened that they felt compelled NOT to take swift action, but to force the father to sign a confidentiality agreement. I gather the father of one of the bullies is the head of the PTA and used to work at the police station... The father of the dead child did everything right. He played by society's/the authorities' rules and he got stonewalled.

Sometimes direct action is required to force changes in the name of justice. Sorry, but I would NOT condemn a baseball bat around the legs of the teacher who brushed the suicide role play off as a joke, and I would NOT condemn a molotov cocktail through the window of the (empty) houses of the bullies. I would NOT condemn severe injuries being visited upon the bullies. There's a 13-year-old who will never go home. Remember the victim.

How many times can a society limply say "something must be done", knowing that nothing will be done. We don't need cheap words from the BOE, we need credible action, names and jail sentences. Otherwise, bring on some street justice. I make no apologies for that.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I wonder if the Japanese teachers' roles have diminished. Years ago, it seemed the Japanese teachers were really active in their students life. Some of my Japanese friends mentioned they had to wear their school uniforms even on weekends/holidays. That was how the school kept tabs on their students. Those who disregarded that rule got disciplined. I told my friends that I found it strange that the school could dictate what they did when away from the school and in their private life. The girls just laughed and shrugged. I gathered it was expected that the teachers/school raised the students. They didn't just take of educating the students. They took care of parenting too. As another poster noted, the children see a lot more of their teacher than their parents.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Someone stated that the "head bully's dad was a former cop." is that true? I was wondering why they have not arrested the teacher, principal, superintendent, or the students involved. Keystones and prosecutors at it again.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The natural reaction on this tragic evident is shock an outrage. Most people feel helpless, especially as the boy is dead now and nothing can be done to help him. What can be done to prevent somehing like that in the future? Punish the culprits? Slap the teachers and the police and the "system"? In my opinion Vesperto gives a good hint. We should do whatever possible to strenghten the bonds between parents and pupils.I read the experience of a man who in his school time was bullied, yet what really encouraged him were the words of his mother :"Whatever should happen, I am standing behind you!"

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The 3 main bullies, the (ir)responsible teacher, his/her supervisor, the principal, and anyone else who agreed to sweep this tragic issue under the rug all need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. In today's world, the bullies need to be tried as adults and the punishment has got to fit the crime, not the age of the suspects.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Where are all the lawyers/counsel? If this was in N. America thery would be lining up to take a crack at every possible litigation. Parents need to approach the police with someone (counsel) at their side who knows their rights. Poor poor dad of victim.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

My wife and I have been fuming about this for the past week. All those oyaji teachers and education board members just want to be trouble-free until they get their taishokukin and start receiving their nenkin. What is regrettable for them is that they had to deal with this scandal, not the fact that a youth took his own life. How many times have school officials changed their tune? I'm sick of the "let's hide the truth until they find out at which point we will apologize and take a deep bow in front of the cameras" mentality. Impei-taikoku, nippon!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

**In JHS? Maybe10 times more than the parents. The kids on average probably see Mom or Dad for between 30 to 60 minutes in the AM when they wake up, rush off to school. Then the kids are at school, if they have club activities, sometimes until 8 PM or so, then off to juku until 11 PM get home eat, and repeat.

So on average, for many kids, the parents see their kids weekdays may 1 to 2 hours. While the teachers have them 8 to 12 hours or more. And THAT is no joke either.**

Indeed, kids are at school, club and juku for those amount of hours but do you think they are with the same teacher that whole time? Nope. Not even close. Homeroom teacher for perhaps 10 minutes before class in the morning, they might teach that student for 45-50 minutes a day (maybe once a week a double period), perhaps lunch for 20 minutes and then 10 minutes after school. All with 35-40 other students. They might have that teacher for cleaning duty but let's be honest, teachers aren't often there. They then go to club where most often teachers aren't there. They then go to juku which is a different teacher. So, being nice, a teacher is with the same student MAYBE two hours day. Five days a week (not including weekend club) for three years - IF the homeroom teacher doesn't change. 10 hours a week of face time with 40 other kids to look after as well.

Now, let's look at the parents. From birth to age 13. Let's look at JHS. Yep, in the morning where most likely mom as face to face time with her child/children. SHE decides how much facetime. Kid gets sent to juku by parents - hmmm... parent's can't handle the work or aren't home or don't have an interest? Kid comes home from juku. More face time is the parents make it happen. Most don't. Now, let's look at weekends shall we. That alone is say 20 hours of face time with parents and kids IF the parents make it happen. Most can't be bothered. Easier to let kids lock themselves in their room and play games and read comics. So that's how many hours of face to face time that parents CAN have if they make it happen. Thing is, more can't be bothered. Why bother when you can expect the teacher to deal with the kids, their problems and their future lives.

Doesn't seem very fair to me to blame only the teachers and demand they be fired when clearly ALL of the parents in this case need to be fired as parents. Look at the hours outlines above. Now IF the student doesn't like their teacher do you really expect a student to tell them just how bad the bullying is?

I'm not stating that the teachers are innocent in this. I'm just shocked that they are bearing the brunt of it all when to me, clearly it is the parents than need to be dealt with. How do you raise monsters who think such behaviour is okay? How do you live under the same roof as your child who is being terrorized at school and not know something is wrong? Did this child's parents have any meetings as the school to discuss the issues before he died? No? Why not? Yes? Nothing done? Why not go to the police THEN? Too late now.

Where did these animals learn this behaviour? Their parents? Society? They see it everywhere. Because bullying is part of Japanese culture. Making the teachers the scapegoat is pathetic when all of society needs to be held accountable. Why didn't any of those other students say anything to their parents? Did they? If so why didn't the other parents call the school and do something? Oh right, not their child so look the other way and hope the bullying doesn't come to their family. Pathetic. Thing is, this is what happens.

How many of the readers here have seen someone at work being bullied and done nothing? Guess that makes them just like the teachers. If a coworker kills himself, should THEY be held accountable too?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

they do however discuss the lack of action by the school, BOE, and police to investigate this incident and they also discuss the public anger over the lack of action as well.

No, this is just another case of bullying. The public loves to rip apart people - as long as they aren't parents. People are loving this and enjoying the show as sick as it is.

**To the extent he experienced leg and hand fracture due to it yet the school nor the tearcher didn't do any actions to reprimand the bullies.

Teachers and principal are afraid to suspend or expel the bullies at school. I asked many times to them but all their answers are same, bully couldn't be stopped and suspension and expulsion at school wouldn't help the bullies 'coz we're ruining their future. To add more, they're basically afraid to the parents.**

And your friend's parents didn't change his school? Why not? Why aren't you also holding his parents responsible for that? No child of mine would continue at a school if they were attacked like this.

Teachers and principals aren't allowed to expel students here. That power has been taken away. You can't kick a child out of the classroom legally. You can have IN school suspensions but you can't tell them they can't come.

Why are they afraid of the parents? Oh right, because the parents bully the teachers. See how the cycle works?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The father of the dead child did everything right.

Did he? He didn't seem to have open communication with his son because he had to find out what was going on with his son from the school. Why didn't he go to the police right after his son was attacked? Why didn't he demand meetings with the bullies and the parent's of the bullies? Why didn't he have his son change schools? The dad is reactive. Just like the rest of the damn country when it comes to the welfare of kids.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I saw one comment saying its not such a big deal, people are bullied into suicide in the West too, and I woudl like to point out that when that does happen, the appropriate actions are taken to punish those responsible.

Id like to point out that one of the main roles of a teaacher is not only to impart a scientific education but a moral one, yes the parents should too, but the teachers are in a place of education with the title of teacher and the respect earned by that title. They should also be monitoring what is happening in their teaching facilites.

As to bullying being part of Japanese culture, agreed 100%, I will never forget the shame and humiliation I saw that apprentice photographer being put through, maybe Im just too ignorant on the Japanese way, after all I am a foreigner, I impore someone teach me how being forced to pick up cigarette buds is part of photography.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I think its about time Japan change their system of how they treat kids who did really disturbing acts. They are so soft! They don`t kick student out from school and do heavy punishments and one reason why is such act MIGHT RESULT BULLYING TO THE KIDS WHO ARE PUNISHED> But I think them being so soft results to more bullying! I am an ALT and this morning the HRT in one of my class was crying over kids who are so hard to hold and are so obviously BULLY! wake-up MEXT!!! Are you waiting for more deaths before you act???? Punish them!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Karen, blame the parents for that. The PTA and monster parents have taken the power away from teachers to punish kids. I 100% feel you on this. When I worked in the JHS/HS system I was at wit's end with regards to what I was "allowed" to do with regards to punishment. Very, very little. If the parents don't support the teacher and agree to something, the teachers basically have ZERO power to punish. It is pathetic and yes, MEXT needs to address this.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yeah, parents are so URUSAI when its all about their kids. They do complain a lot and some would even say when they receive complaints that their kids are not like that. So yeah right, monster parents are to blame but only MEXT can do action now to change their system. A very young life was taken and oneS FUTURE WAS RUINED because of NOT WANTING TO RUIN BULLYS LIFE! LEt those students apologize in public too to set as an example. Stop SPARING AND PROTECTING! LEt them taste their own dose of medicine (BITTER MEDICINE)! I hope too that this tragic death of a very young boy turned scandal will open people`s eyes about involving themselves. Stop being cold and start caring people of Japan!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Teacher AND parents need to take a serious look at ourselves in the mirror...as whether we like it or not, parents are a child's first teachers.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

very true conbread1

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Anybody and yes teachers are included can call the police if they witness abuse.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But, this is only one of many bullying related teenage suicides. It is only this one that has caused a media stir. Addressing this one case is not the right thing to do. They should be addressing bullying and teenage suicide nationally.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yeah cause I can see these bullying everyday in the school... But these scandal must serve as eye openner. They must really start being a bit harder to punishing

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The father of the dead child did everything right.

I have to say that if the father did everything right his son would be alive today!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

How about the punishing start with the bullies being slapped upside the head, followed by forced participation in mock funerals for them while they wear shirts inscribed with "I am a worthless piece of garbage"?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is why I teach my kids to deal with bullying by fighting back! I was bullied at school for as long as I remembered, I got so angry one day, threw a punch, but I was small, so in the end I got my butt kicked, the pain lasted a few days, but something good came out of it. The bully ignored me since then! So, I've learned that most bullies will back down at even the slightest sign of "fighting back".

To those with kids, my advice is to stop protecting your children by putting barriers around them or by providing a "safe environment". There is no such thing, as these incidents have proven again and again that teachers, police, people you expect to protect your children can't do their job when it comes to bullying. Instead, your best bet would be to teach your children the skills, wisdom, so they can protect themselves.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

tmarie.....Ok, my point about the teacher and the school vs the parents is that nearly all JHS kids spend more time at school with various teachers and their "friends" than they do with their parents.

I agree 100% that there is a HUGE problem at that particular school, where EVERYONE, teachers, parents, and all associated folks, bear blame, along with the kids who bullied this child, for what happened.

It is inexcusable to allow the bullying to go as far as it did, and if tonights national news is to be believed, (the boy's so-called friends visited his house 3 days before his suicide and messed up his room and stole his wallet as well) there is plentyof blame to pass around.

I feel sorry for everyone involved, from all sides, there is no justice to be had. A young life was snuffed out because too many people, parents included, were too caught up in their own worlds to think about HIM.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I certainly hope at least ONE of the questionairres had a question sequence like the following:

1a. Did you observe bullying of the student in question? (Yes/No)

1b. If so, DID YOU REPORT IT TO SCHOOL OFFICIALS? (Yes/No/Not Applicable)

For those (including the father) who are blaming the police, what can they do? The kid left no indication why he killed himself. Arresting the bullies would be useless as no court is going to convict them in regards to the boy's suicide.

I do think the school district has been underhanded in this matter. Making the father sign a non-disclosure agreement before they would let him see the results of the questionairres is flat-out wrong. They KNEW they had something to hide and wanted to make sure the father didn't blab.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Serrano

How about the punishing start with the bullies being slapped upside the head, followed by forced participation in mock funerals for them while they wear shirts inscribed with "I am a worthless piece of garbage"?

Well sure, that's going to do wonders. Turn them from troubled, bullying misfits into raging, murderous psychopaths in one easy lesson.

So easy to heap hatred and bile, so difficult to look at the situation calmly and come up with reasonable solutions.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

For those (including the father) who are blaming the police, what can they do?

Let's keep this straight, the father, iirc, only went to the police AFTER his son died, and the police refused to investigate because there was no suicide letter, and no other proof at the time, that the suicide may have been related to the bullying.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Well sure, that's going to do wonders. Turn them from troubled, bullying misfits into raging, murderous psychopaths in one easy lesson.

So easy to heap hatred and bile, so difficult to look at the situation calmly and come up with reasonable solutions.

It is easy to let anger over come reality. The kids that are guilty of the bullying, like it or not, are probably laughing on their own, feeling like their goals were met, and are probably thinking about their next victim.

These kids need serious counselling and need to be forced to realize the consequences of their actions.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Yubaru

the police refused to investigate because there was no suicide letter, and no other proof at the time, that the suicide may have been related to the bullying.

The police cannot investigate, are not allowed to investigate, are barred from investigating. They did not "refuse" to investigate.

Like I said, blame the politicians who make the law, not the plods who enforce it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Yubaru (again!)

These kids need serious counseling and need to be forced to realize the consequences of their actions.

I agree completely with this. It just sounds a bit different to the way you expressed it before :)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The police cannot investigate, are not allowed to investigate, are barred from investigating. They did not "refuse" to investigate.

Wanna bet? Yes they could have investigated it, IF they had so chosen to, there is no law against them checking out the circumstances regarding any death, including a suicide. They ASSUMED from the start that it was "just" a suicide, nothing more, nothing less. They also failed in their jobs and responsibilities as police to investigate the cause.

Nothing barred them from the investigation beyond their own desire to do it or not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

tmarie - I cant believe some poor little ball of hate gave your long post a thumbs down. You are spot on in giving fair share of blame to the parent(s). For the father (where is the mother in all of this?) not to realize the kid was being bullied for so long suggests a weak relationship to say the least.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I agree completely with this. It just sounds a bit different to the way you expressed it before :)

I still have not made any comments directed towards the "bullies" in this case, other than the one you quoted above here. There is a serious lack of information on details that prevents me from saying anything other than my own speculations about what happened.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Yubaru

Yes they could have investigated it, IF they had so chosen to, there is no law against them checking out the circumstances regarding any death, including a suicide

Sorry, I wasn't very clear. My point was that the police are not allowed, by law, to accept the parents' complaint about the son's death. Of course they could "check out the circumstances", but that wouldn't amount to the same thing.

I think we basically agree that the system's screwed up... I'm just concentrating on the lawmakers, rather than the enforcers, who have less power and influence.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hoser, so many people want to gloss of the responsibility of parents and blame everything on teachers - which is exactly why this stuff happens. If parents taught their kids empathy, responsibility and communication from birth, these issues wouldn't be near as serious as they are because kids could talk to their parents, kids wouldn't feel the need to pick on those weaker and the buck wouldn't be passed around.

Yubaru, I agree with your post in response to mine. Kids are indeed at school for long periods of time but often they aren't in the presence of teachers (club, cleaning, changing for PE) and when they are, there are large numbers of students so teachers can very rarely give one to one attention - which is just one reason why large classes are horrible!

This is a tragedy but pointing fingers, demanding people be fired, suggestion horrific punishments... won't stop the issue. Prevention will. As it is, I do believe schools here have a "zero tolerance" policy with regards to bullying. Thing is, if schools can't dish out punishments and parents won't take responsibility for their child's behavior, these policies are meaningless - as seen here.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The kids need to be encouraged to tell their parents about the bullying before it gets to the point where the child feels there is no other way out. I was bullied at school for three years, so I can imagine how bad it must have been for him... the school system needs an anti-bullying system installed, teachers who pro-actively look for signs, classmates who will report to teachers. There needs to be visits by the police, telling the kids of the effects it can have... such as in this tragic case.

Japanese kids need to be made to feel they can report this to someone... and not some macho teacher who thinks they should just suck it up as it adds character. Bullies are evil and need to be dealt with, or there will be many more of these cases.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Hey suicide kid, I hope if you gonna reborn into this world again as a person. You won't have to experience this tragedy again

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Sorry, I wasn't very clear. My point was that the police are not allowed, by law, to accept the parents' complaint about the son's death. Of course they could "check out the circumstances", but that wouldn't amount to the same thing.

The police can accept the complaint, whether or not they choose to act on it is another thing. Whether they choose to act on it or not is a totally different subject.

I have file complaints with the police, there is a process they go through on whether or not they choose to act on it or not.

There is no law against them accepting the complaint. If someone files a complaint they have to by law take action, or not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@fadamor

For those (including the father) who are blaming the police, what can they do? The kid left no indication why he killed himself. Arresting the bullies would be useless as no court is going to convict them in regards to the boy's suicide.

Isn't it the case that the father is complaining about the police because they refused to address the results of the survey at the school? And that survey shows that many students witnessed the alleged bullying on numerous occasions. That being the case, the police have been negligent in not acting on the eye-witness accounts to crimes that the school has apparently tried to cover up. In a court, it would seem to be the word against the three bullies against testimony from numerous witnesses to transgressions that seem to have been repeated continually over an extended period.

@yubaru

Let's keep this straight, the father, iirc, only went to the police AFTER his son died, and the police refused to investigate because there was no suicide letter, and no other proof at the time, that the suicide may have been related to the bullying.

While it appears to be the case that the father of the victim only went to the police after becoming outraged at the results of the questionnaire, I believe that the father is justified in criticizing the lack of police response based on some claim to adhering to some set of procedural rules that are out of sync with reality and the law.

The article states that:

After the boy’s death, the school asked students to respond to a questionnaire on bullying. Fuji TV reported that more than 60 students answered that they had seen the boy being bullied in the three weeks before he committed suicide. According to the answers, three bullies punched the boy in the toilet, forced him to eat dead bees, pulled down his pants and taped his mouth.

It certainly sounds like more than what jock types could refer to as a little rough-housing. It sounds like systematic abuse carried out regularly over an extended period.

I would have to say that the father is fully justified in his outrage. You have the right to say that you don't thing he did everything right a a father (or his son would still be alive), but surely you don't mean to accuse him of doing everything wrong and exonerating the culpably guilty parties.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree what earlier comment said, this happens in America to, teachers just plain ignore the circumstance, I remember LIFE is a japanese drama that sheds a light on how awful the teachers can just laugh and shrug a person getting bullied cause the bully's dad is either rich and can shut down the school, Korea's the same way. Suicides will continue to go up in Japan and across Asia if people don't start being open to each other and work as a community instead of being scared for themselves and not getting authorities involved.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Lot's of question need to be examined:

1) Why didn't the boy's parents know he was being bullied so badly? 2) Why did his teacher think nothing of it. 3) Why did the school think that bullying wasn't a problem but still conduct the questionnaires and bind the boy's parents to secrecy? 4) Why did the police choose first to react by saying they couldn't do anything?

This all reeks of, as someone else already mentioned, a desire to avoid responsibility until, for the parents, it was too late and for everyone else, to run away and hide from their failures to act forthrightly and positively from the beginning.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The only good news here is that the parents and the public are sticking to their guns and trying to force a change. Every day this is in the news is a good thing. If the parents end up with a large compensation from the school then that would be better. Hit them in their pocketbooks. This is one case where a US style lawsuit makes sense.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Welcome to Japan. A place of nice people and unspoken atrocities.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Yubaru,

and no other proof at the time, that the suicide may have been related to the bullying.

There's STILL no proof that the suicide was related to the bullying. The father can believe with every bone in his body that the suicide was caused by bullying, but beliefs are not admissable in court, only facts. There have been a couple of cases in the U.S. where bullying/hazing was blamed in suicides, but so far no convictions of the bulliers because the victim killed themself.

The father is out of line for getting mad at the police in this case. He needs to redirect his anger where it squarely belongs: on the shoulders of the District school administration that allowed the culture of bullying to flourish.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Why is this labeled suicide? The bullies "tortured" him and then forced him to commit the suicidal act under duress. Should be classified as murder. Where are the clueless one-sided prosecutors on this? I was told that most Japanese know that school officials told all students to keep quiet about the evidence and do not say anything to anyone. School officials are now accessories to the murder. Doubt if anyone gets arrested or fired. Shameful. No more saying sorry to the public on TV with a bow. If he, she or they are truly remorseful he, she or they should give up all of their assets and their families' assets immediately and be homeless for two years minimum.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I was at the school in question two years ago checking on a student teacher there. It was a zoo. Wild kids, clueless staff, a recipe waiting to happen.And it obviously did.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The father is out of line for getting mad at the police in this case. He needs to redirect his anger where it squarely belongs: on the shoulders of the District school administration that allowed the culture of bullying to flourish.

Or perhaps he could redirect his anger at himself for not having enough communication between himself and his son? Had his son been comfortable with dad, he could of talked to him about it all and his dad could have taken steps to prevent the bullying. For all we know the son did talk about it and dad brushed ut off which could be why he's do desperatly trying to blame someone.

Dad could also blame society for allowing bullying to be an everyday part of life here. You're either part of the problem or part of the solution. If you want to blame the school, also blame all the students that looked away and did nothing. Kids know bullying is wrong. They're told to report it. How about stop passing the buck around, stop playing the blame game and do something to prevent the next one? I fear there will be copycat suicides with all the attention this is getting.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Anybody and yes teachers are included can call the police if they witness abuse.

Several States in the Australian Education system have a legislation called 'Mandatory Reporting', which requires all teachers to fine tune their duty of care so carefully that they are required by law to report any instance of suspected abuse - be it domestic violence, sexual abuse, drug and alcohol abuse or bullying, to either their Principal, the Police or a Medical Practitioner. There are legal ramifications if you fail to do so, and proof is not required. You only need to have suspicions based on convesations you have had with the child, things you have seen or things you have noticed about the child at school. It's a very big deal in schools these days and something that people do not take lightly. The most important part of it really is that failure to act is considered negligent - so if a kid tells you he/she is being bullied and you do nothing and something like this happens, you will face criminal charges. It give teachers the power to help kids in need and makes people at all levels officially accountable for the welfare of children who need help. It eliminates this problem;

There's STILL no proof that the suicide was related to the bullying. The father can believe with every bone in his body that the suicide was caused by bullying, but beliefs are not admissable in court, only facts

Because the victims have a voice.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There's STILL no proof that the suicide was related to the bullying. The father can believe with every bone in his body that the suicide was caused by bullying, but beliefs are not admissable in court, only facts. There have been a couple of cases in the U.S. where bullying/hazing was blamed in suicides, but so far no convictions of the bulliers because the victim killed themself.

This is Japan, not the US, different rules apply. It's not smart to assume anything when it comes to the police here.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Fellow posters, we have talked about this. Not exactly the same thread as this but on a subject that SHOULD go hand in hand with this.

Spanking. I'm willing to bet that those bullies aren't disciplined at all. They aren't grounded. There's no such thing as "school detention", there's just no punishment level at all.

This bullying will continue until parents aren't afraid to take the belt to their children. This will continue at school until the Principal who should be FEARED is given the right to keep students after school. Teachers need to be backed up. Give them the right to suspend students from class that cause disruption. Give them the right to take away mobile phones and stop texting IN CLASS. Most importantly, "school detention" and removal from "club activities".

You can't reward bullies or cheaters. You can't say "He can't go to detention cause he's got a soccer game on Saturday". Cut those bullies from the team. If the coach doesn't support the decision then he supports the bullying.

If you aren't part of the solution, you are part of the problem. Plain and simple.

It's shouldn't take a media circus to enforce punishment on those responsible.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Watching Japanese TV this morning you can see where the influence to bully might have come from. People telling jokes and getting hit if they aren't funny... then the audience laughs at that. It's like Ichiro promoting beer. What message is that sending? Yeah P/C goes a little too far in some countries but c'mon Japan... catch up a little.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This bullying will continue until parents aren't afraid to take the belt to their children.

Violence begets violence in the case of a bully like these kids.

Give them the right to suspend students from class that cause disruption.

They have that right NOW, nowhere is it said that these bullies were disruptive in class. For all we know they were angels in class, assuming things where there is a lack of information is not prudent nor the intelligent thing to do.

Give them the right to take away mobile phones and stop texting IN CLASS. Most importantly, "school detention" and removal from "club activities".

Again they have the right to do this and more.

Being mis-informed or uninformed about what teachers and schools can or can not do leads one to speculate on the circumstances that is understandable. However just about everything you wrote in your post can be done with the exception of violent corporal punishment. That's against the law here and plenty of other countries too. As well it should be.

They key here is making both the students and parents take responsibility for their actions. That's the hard part.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They should fire the board of education all of them and the whole school staff. Hire teachers and staff members who are willing to be responsible and notice any changes in student behavior. They are not doing their job as teachers and guardian. Most important hire a counselor who can teach about and if the student needs help with social or any problems. Students are at school more than 8 hours a day, all year around. Teacher must know each students behavior, teachers there are like second parents. Kids wants understanding, love and guidance. We need to help kids, be there for them.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This bullying will continue until parents aren't afraid to take the belt to their children.

So you think parents physically hitting their child will instill in them that it isn't okay to hit others. Rather messed up logic. There are plenty of ways to teach kids to behave and punish them when they misbehave. I don't condone hitting kids as a form of punishment because it teaches them that hitting is okay.

I also don't agree with your comments about fear. The issue is respect. People listen to people they respect, not fear. Having principals, teachers, parents... that kids respect is much, much better than having such authority figures these kids fear. Respect is earned and rightly so. Kids aren't dumb and don't respect people they know aren't respect-worthy.

The parents of these bullies need to be examining where THEY went wrong in raising their kids. So do the parents of the dead child. So do the parents of the kids who all looked away and did nothing. So does society, including the teachers and the school board, who live in a society where this is allowed to happen. This isn't the first time and I doubt it will be the last time unless Japan does some serious inward looking at their culture of bullying and pecking order.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

CL400 you see laughing with some one and making a joke of some on are totally two different things, many people messing that point.

jokes always need timing and a suitable situation, jokes which never fit to the situation or targeting some one are not jokes that only creates problems, unfortunately it is happening

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is a good discussion for homeschooling! You put your children with a stranger somebody you hardly know for 12 years of their most intense growing stages, it's mad, you would have been burned at the stake for suggesting it, just a couple of hundreds of years ago. Read the history of schooling and learn! The system is the problem, and parents ARE the ones responsible for their children. You have the right to your choice of using schools, but you also have a choice to give education another way. The choice is for each parent to make. What happens in these situations where there is no clear way of handling it, only victims, is one I prefer to avoid. Argue all you like about who and which person is responsible, or just ignore this sort of disucussion, and spend some time with your own kids. Envision how you could use that time to--well one morning will probably get you one seventh of a way through the Jpanese Kokugo textbook, for eg.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Former WBC, Japanese and OPBF flyweight champion Daisuke Naito is pretty outspoken about bullying since he was bullied as a student. So for punishment, I say these teachers, police officers, and bullies should each have to go a few rounds in the ring against Mr. Naito. To start. More punishment should surely follow.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The only good thing about this incident is that bullying is finally a major topic to be addressed in the media here. I wonder though why that is. There have been so many horrific bullying cases over the years here, only now there is a big public discussion. But better late than never.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@yubaru.

However just about everything you wrote in your post can be done with the exception of violent corporal punishment.

Yes but IS IT? I usually agree with your posts but this time, I fear the teachers do not avail themselves of this opportunity to "teach" the children by giving them detention, or any other kind of punishment.

As for blaming the father, most Japanese kids are little better than strangers to their fathers. I cannot quote the exact expression but I do know that children are brought up in Japan to view only their father's back. There is also the possibility the son could be scared of admitting to having been bullied. He'd want his father to think he was brave. I am NOT saying this is right, I'm just saying this could be one of many reasons for this tragedy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is the problem with systems....... OBVIOUS guilt is ALWAYS discounted in favor of "formal investigations" in order to protect the guilty and cause pain to the victims' families.....

Especially in the case here, where the guilty parties were the sons of "important people".

If the victim's parents were important people, and not the perpetrators', I GUARANTEE the investigation and the entire situation would be very different.

THIS is how corrupt and biased the modern mockery of "justice" is in the world we live in!!!

Modern man is despicable!!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Any ALT from the USA, Australia or Canada knows that there is absolutely no supervision of students between classes and many times during practice time before the teacher arrives. Many junior high schools keep all the teachers in the faculty room before the first class starts in order to hear the wise words from the principal, vice principals and department heads. 99% of the information could be provided by memos in the teachers' mailboxes. What is the solution? Teachers need to be assigned classrooms so that they are in the classrooms before school starts. They can also monitor classes and restrooms between classes. Most ALTs have no idea what a principal or vice principal does. Teachers are told to take care of the discipline or be involuntarily transferred to another school. Administrators fear the power of the PTA. Japan needs to look at alternative ways to assign supervision from the top down. It won't solve all the problems but at least it is a start.

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Completely agreed.

I've worked in private schools where female teachers have been hospitalized after being violently beaten by students and the students barely received a slap on the wrist from it.

The police sided with the students' parents and claimed the teacher was asking for it.

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