HIROSHIMA – A Hiroshima school’s in-house probe into a 15-year-old student’s suicide has found its poor clerical management and career guidance is responsible for the death, it emerged Thursday.
The junior high school student from the town of Fuchu took his life in December after the school refused to issue a recommendation to the high school he wanted to attend based on a record of delinquency that was incorrect.
The report, which was disclosed to Kyodo News, was compiled by school Principal Hiroshi Sakamoto and four others on Feb. 29. In it, the school admitted that its failure to manage data used for career guidance, combined with poor career guidance given by the boy’s teacher, led the boy to take his own life.
On Thursday, the education ministry launched its own investigation into the case, which will include examining measures to prevent the same situation happening again.
The report said the teacher supervising the boy’s class had referred to the wrong records, obtained from another faculty member in November last year, stating that the boy had been caught shoplifting in a convenience store, although it was actually another student who had shoplifted.
The boy’s name was mistakenly entered into the electronic records by a faculty member based on an oral report on the case from another member, the report said.
The mistake had been discovered during the school’s session on career guidance in October 2013 and was corrected on paper but not in the computer records.
“It was a big mistake to have used data which should not have been used,” Sakamoto said.
The report also said the boy’s teacher failed to give proper career guidance. The teacher gave guidance counseling to the boy five times in November and December last year, but only for about five minutes each time in the school’s corridor, it said.