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Walt Gardner
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan
Jan 14, 2021
How to protect students from sexual misconduct
Japan reported the second-highest number of cases of sexual misconduct at 273 for fiscal 2019, according to a survey by the education ministry.
COMMENTARY / World
May 22, 2017
University admission tests warrant skepticism
The debate over privately managed exams for university admissions will make little difference because of the limitations of all standardized tests.
COMMENTARY / Japan
May 9, 2017
Helping all children reach their potential
When it comes to meeting the needs of children with disabilities, the contrast between Japan and the United States is jarring.
COMMENTARY / Japan
May 2, 2017
Teachers have fewer rights than students
A recent Tokyo High Court decsion unwittingly affirmed that students possess more free speech rights than teachers.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Apr 25, 2017
When high achievement is a pyrrhic victory
The results of tests of international competition have long been the sole basis for ranking a country's schools, but these tests fail to provide a complete picture.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Apr 18, 2017
Teach patriotism, not chauvinism
Despite its politically incorrect connotation today, patriotism is essential in any democratic society.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Apr 10, 2017
Modify instruction to improve English skills
English-language teachers in Japan can learn from athletic coaches.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Mar 14, 2017
Time to treat English teachers as professionals
If Japan wants to recruit and retain top English-speaking talent to the front of the classroom, it needs to ensure non-Japanese teachers are treated fairly.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Mar 6, 2017
It's time to get real about curriculum reform
Overhauling the curriculum to better prepare students for the future is commendable, but only if the changes are grounded in reality.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Mar 4, 2017
The shared shame of childhood poverty
Children who go to class without a good night's sleep and nourishing breakfast cannot possibly learn as much as their classmates.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Feb 19, 2017
Nursery schools: quantity and quality matter
Admission into nursery school is no assurance of a quality education.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Feb 7, 2017
No wide agreement on how to handle bullying
A better way for both Japan and the U.S. to handle bullying is to intervene before the problem occurs.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Jan 29, 2017
Vocational universities may be the way forward
Universities in Japan and the U.S. face unprecedented challenges that will make them unrecognizable in the years ahead.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Jan 24, 2017
Childhood poverty rates need redefinition
A better education for children from poor families is key to breaking the chain of poverty.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Jan 10, 2017
Nearsightedness a cost of academic excellence
Vision problems in children take many forms. But the likely condition in Japan and the United States is nearsightedness as a result of a combination of genes, behavior and environment.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Dec 29, 2016
Lowest birthrates on record bedevil schools
Record low birthrates in Japan and the United States will raise unprecedented problems for education officials in both countries.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Dec 25, 2016
PISA confirms excellence of a handful of nations
The obsession with rankings on international student assessment tests may be counterproductive.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan
Dec 12, 2016
School lunches reveal cultural differences
Local governments are being penny wise and pound foolish when they reduce the quality of school lunches.
COMMENTARY / Japan
Nov 28, 2016
Despite legislation, danger of exploiting foreign workers remains
Rather than relying on foreign 'trainees' to compensate for labor shortages, Japan should establish apprenticeship programs to give citizens needed skills.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan
Nov 12, 2016
LGBT-inclusive curriculum badly needed
For too long, Japanese LGBT students have faced verbal abuse, physical harassment and far worse because of homophobia.

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