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Tokyo: Do you think teachers should be allowed to dish out corporal punishment?

by Mark Buckton

Daniel Krieger
Journalist, 42 (American)
I don’t see any benefit in corporal punishment, whether at the hands of teachers or parents. Though this was common practice just about everywhere in a less enlightened era, it’s time for Japan to fully embrace the 21st century and penalize teachers who still think hitting children will teach them something. They need to overcome their laziness and figure out more strategic ways to discipline kids.

Harumi Kanaya
Secretary, 36 (Japanese)
Not anymore. During my time, it was common for Showa-era (1926-89) students, but it is not the same for Heisei-born (1989-) kids. Teachers should learn the difference between then and now. This is a completely different generation with different ideas. Instead of corporal punishment, teachers should learn to praise students to encourage them to work harder.

Nobuyoshi Hashimoto
Company director, 48 (Japanese)
Even in my day we knew that physical punishment did not and could not help us improve. If I could force or control an individual to follow my will by kicking or punching, I would do it with my son every day, but we cannot force people into doing what we want by using physical force alone — so my answer is a clear “no.”

Hiromi Goto
Dance teacher, 31 (Japanese)
No. Being a student of martial arts and a teacher of dance, I know that it’s difficult for people to control their bodies and emotions, but if students learn that violence is the normal way to communicate, they’ll use violence too. We have much better ways to communicate.

Pete Heyhoe
Teacher, 40 (Australian)
Corporal punishment is unacceptable, in my opinion. I think there are better ways of getting children you teach to do what you want. They have strong basketball teams in other countries too, without having to resort to actually hitting kids to make them better, so perhaps yelling should be the most extreme length they go to.

Emi Tsuji
Sales, 38 (Japanese)
I’m opposed to violence. In my junior high school the basketball club teacher hit or kicked us, but only when we all knew we deserved it. But the recent (Osaka) case seems to be violence for the sake of it, with no thought from the teacher. The tragedy also highlights the problem with schools like this, which think they are detached from the real world and always try to cover up their problems.

Interested in gathering views in your neighborhood? E-mail community@japantimes.co.jp

  • Equalizer

    “the basketball club teacher hit or kicked us, but only when we all knew we deserved it.” This person was really marked by the experience. She even learned to believe that she actually “deserved” to be kicked by the Coach. Wow…