Every school day, an average of 68 students are punched, slapped, kicked or otherwise physically punished by their teachers, although physical punishment is prohibited by law. A new report by the education ministry confirmed that 6,721 teachers were reported to have used corporal punishment on 14,208 students in the academic year that ended in March.

This number is far higher than what was reported in the ministry’s interim report in April, which found only 840 teachers used violence on 1,890 students from April 2012 to January 2013. The number leaped after local boards looked into the issue more carefully, partially because of an incident last year at Sakuranomiya High School in Osaka in which a male student committed suicide after being repeatedly hit by his basketball coach.

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