For Om Kwan Ja, excluding "chosen gakko" pro-Pyongyang schools from the government's tuition-waiver program would mean more than just having to shell out extra cash for her kids' education. It's a problem that touches on her family's identity, especially for her son, who is studying at Tokyo Korean Junior & Senior High School in Kita Ward.

"I felt it necessary that my children learn the culture and language (of North Korea) at the school, since we as parents can't provide that," Om, a fourth-generation Korean residing in Tokyo, told The Japan Times.

"The students there are regular high school kids. They will become a part of Japanese society in the future," Om said, adding that it would be unreasonable if the government were to make them ineligible for the waiver program due to diplomatic tension between the two countries.