Reported cases of bullying decline 24.5% in Japanese schools


Cases of bullying in schools — as recognized and acted on by police — fell by a quarter in 2015, to 200, marking the second annual drop in a row, the National Police Agency said Thursday.

A total of 331 students from elementary school to senior high school were arrested or taken into protective custody over bullying-related incidents last year, down 27.4 percent, also down for the second consecutive year.

Total bullying cases fell by 24.5 percent.

The improvement may be because of an increase in counselors and social workers posted to schools, an NPA official said.

Of the 331 students, 206, or 60 percent, were in junior high school, 48 in elementary school and 77 in high school.

Of the arrests and protective custody cases, 74 were related to injuries. In one case, a teen in Saitama Prefecture was arrested for causing a black out by pressing down hard on the victim’s chest.

There were 56 cases of assault, and 17 each of violence and extortion.

In nine cases, victims were photographed nude with smartphones and forced to suffer the indignity of having the images shared. In these cases, 22 people were arrested or taken into protective custody.