Hayakawa Nobuo
  • Hayakawa Nobuo 
  • By this author: 3 Latest posted: 2012.07.03
Senior commentator at the Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK), specializing in education and cultural issues. Born in 1953. In 1994 founded NHK’s Kodomo nyūsu, a weekly news program for children.
Is Too Much Riding on the National Achievement Test?2012.07.03

In April 2012, Japan’s national achievement test was held for the first time in two years. The examination was first introduced as a response to rising criticism of the “room-to-grow” educational policy, called yutori kyōiku in Japanese (yutori meaning “relaxed” or “pressure-free”). Critics of that policy argued that competition was a necessary ingredient for raising students’ academic performance…

Declining Birthrate Changing Japan’s Schools2012.05.07

Schools in Japan, from elementary to high school level, are being closed at a rate of 400–500 schools per year. The major cause of this is the declining birthrate. Schools overflowing with children are a thing of the past and empty classrooms are increasingly conspicuous. Japan’s declining population is bringing deep change to its schools. The number of children in public elementary schools has…

A Return to Basics for Japanese Education Policy2012.04.05

Japanese education policy has often been compared to a pendulum, swinging back and forth between the two extremes of rote learning and a more relaxed, individualistic approach. Underlying this shifting personality are the vacillating priorities of the nation’s policymakers, who tend to respond to any hint of stagnation by treating education as the root of the problem, instigating educational refor…

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