Over 100 intellectuals oppose change in Fundamental Law of Education

A group of 129 writers, academics, and educators on January 20 published a statement in opposition to government control over education.

The statement was announced to increase public opposition to an adverse revision of the Fundamental Law of Education and thwart the government and ruling parties' plan to submit a bill to this year's ordinary session of the Diet convening on January 21.

At the news conference on the same day, Fujita Hidenori, professor at International Christian University, pointed out the problem of the lack of discussion based on his own experience.

Writer Irie Yoko criticized the proposed adverse revision of the law as intending to cultivate people who will never say "No" to what the government says, as shown by the "ethics notes" that are now forced on all public schools as a herald to the adversely revised law.

The statement opposes the bill's submission to the Diet for the following reasons: If Article 10 of the Fundamental Law of Education is changed, it will pave the way to state control over education; freedom of conscience will be infringed; and education will become more discriminatory and rank-conscious.

The association to which the 129 people are affiliated was established by writer Tsujii Takashi, Saitama University professor emeritus Teruoka Itsuko, and others in 2002 when they had a strong sense of crisis at the moves for adverse revision of the basic education law. (end)

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