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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 November 12 - 18  > Teachers protest ministry proposal to increase class size
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2014 November 12 - 18 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Teachers protest ministry proposal to increase class size

November 14, 2014
In protest against the Finance Ministry’s proposal to increase class sizes in public elementary schools, members of the All Japan Teachers and Staffs Union (Zenkyo) staged a rally in front of the ministry building on November 13.

At the end of October, the ministry proposed to raise the upper limit of the number of students in elementary school classes from the current 35 to 40 in FY 2015, with the aim of cutting payroll costs for teachers.

Zenkyo Chair Kitamura Yoshihisa noted in his speech that the Abe government’s stance giving priority to an increase in military spending and tax cuts for large corporations is linked to the ministry’s move.

Zenkyo official Sakamoto Tsugio referred to the Defense Ministry’s plan to purchase 17 Osprey transport aircraft from the U.S. by 2018, each of which costs about 10 billion yen. He said that if the government were to move this money to the education budget, it would be possible to lower the number of students per class to 35 and under in all public primary, junior high, and high schools nationwide.

A teacher from Miyagi Prefecture stressed that a small-sized class is essential to support children effectively.

The union is calling on its members across the nation to send protest faxes and e-mails to PM Abe and the Finance Ministry.

Past related article:
> Finance ministry proposes ending promotion of small class sizes for public schools [October 26, 2014]
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