While a record number of foreign children at schools in Fukushima Prefecture were found to have needed Japanese language assistance in fiscal 2023, the prefecture lags behind in providing a sufficient learning environment for these children.

According to the prefecture, there were 311 children of foreign nationality attending public elementary, junior high and high schools in the year that ended in March. Of these, a record 113 students — or more than a third — were found to have been unable to fully understand Japanese and needed support.

Support groups are calling for a review of a special quota for foreign nationals at prefectural high schools, claiming that the current eligibility for taking the entrance exams is not in line with reality.