Apr 9, 2014

Textbook selection law enacted

A bill to revise the law governing how school textbooks are chosen cleared the Upper House on Wednesday, obliging boards of education to follow decisions by their municipalities’ regional councils over the selection of common textbooks for local schools. The move comes in the ...

War memorials as varied as public's views

| Mar 31, 2014

War memorials as varied as public's views

by Eric Johnston

The controversial Yasukuni Shrine, a source of perennial tension between Japan and its East Asian neighbors, and the Peace Parks of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are well-known in and out of Japan as the country’s representative war memorials, drawing millions of visitors each year. But ...

Mar 23, 2014

Education ministry's heavy hand

Two weeks before school starts, Japan's education minister tells the town of Taketomi, Okinawa Prefecture, that it may not use the junior high school civics textbook it adopted in place of the "conservative" textbook selected by an area-wide council.

Clams touted for 'sea flower garden'

Mar 18, 2014

Clams touted for 'sea flower garden'

The Okinawa Prefectural Sea Farming Center is speeding up aquaculture of “himejako” clams, popular in the prefecture for sushi and sashimi, to attract tourists. The center said the clams, also known by their Latin name of Tridacna crocea, are being planted in nearby coastal ...

Mar 14, 2014

School board told to use conservative textbook

Education minister Hakubun Shimomura on Friday ordered the board of education in Taketomi, Okinawa Prefecture, to adopt a junior high school social studies textbook known for its conservative views, after the town chose another book in defiance of a regional council. It is the ...

Island hop to friendly Okinoerabu

Mar 8, 2014

Island hop to friendly Okinoerabu

by Hillel Wright

At the end of March, having reached the age of 70 three months ago, I’ll retire from my post as a lecturer at Okinawa Christian University — mandatory retirement. Knowing this has given me a real sense of liberation in the past year or ...

Mar 3, 2014

LDP avoids second loss in local Okinawa races

Yoshitaka Nakayama, backed by the Liberal Democratic Party-led ruling coalition, was re-elected Sunday as mayor of Ishigaki, Okinawa Prefecture. Nakayama, 46, won 15,903 votes against 11,881 for Nagateru Ohama, 66, a former Ishigaki mayor who ran as an independent. With Nakayama’s victory, the LDP ...