After reading two letters in the July 29 issue — “Outsourcing teaching jobs bad for schools” by Chris Clancy and “Poor names for Olympic mascots” by Gavin Bantock — I found something in common in the decision-making process by authorities when it comes to English matters.

They seem blind to who the real beneficiaries should be.

They don’t seem to listen to the opinions of “outsiders.” There are a lot of non-Japanese advisers who have constructive ideas and opinions, and also love for Japan. However, the authorities are locked into a mindset of “We Japanese do our business by ourselves.”

They (including all related persons, not only decision-makers) don’t seem to have the ability to say “no” when the decisions have been made. Once a final decision is known to the public, we often see huge opposition, but the authorities don’t withdraw the decision and apologize.

Taking these things into account, decision-makers regarding English-related matters must be more flexible and open, and try to really take an international viewpoint. I hope they will adopt a mindset that we are a part of an international community.


The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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