Japan's education ministry revises guidelines, encouraging school rules reviews
For the first time in 12 years, Japan's education ministry has revised its guidelines for teachers on how to instruct students about their behavior. The guidelines call for schools to review their rules frequently to prevent excessively strict guidance.
The ministry released the guidelines on Tuesday. The revision reflects discussions by experts.
The revised guidelines say that schools should make public their rules on their website or other places, and should explain why the rules have been established and the procedures required to review them.
They also call for schools to check whether their rules have negative effects on students and to constantly carry out reviews.
For the first time, the guidelines clearly state the rights of children. They ask for understanding on children's rights to freely express their opinions.
The guidelines also include support for students of sexual minorities. They say it is acceptable for children to wear the uniform of the gender they identify as, and to use multipurpose toilets.
The ministry official said he hopes the revision of the guidelines will be an opportunity for school officials to think about how to deal with students in a way that matches the times.