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2018 March 28 - April 3 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Some Japanese school rules allow teachers to check even the color of female students' panties

March 30, 2018
Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Councilors Kira Yoshiko at an Upper House education committee meeting on March 29 raised the issue of school regulations that hurt students mentally and physically, demanding the withdrawal of the zero-tolerance policy in schools.

Kira reported the results of a survey conducted by a civic group, criticizing some schools for forcing students to wear a designated color of underwear. She cited examples where female teachers conduct uniform checks by undoing the buttons of students' blouses and flipping up their skirts to see if they are wearing the right color of bras and panties. In some cases, even male teachers carry out these inspections.

Kira said, "Isn't this called sexual harassment which violates fundamental human rights?"

Education Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa showed his concern over what he just heard from Kira, and said, "Such conduct undermines students' self-esteem and thus could mentally damage them."

As a major reason for the ridiculous rules, Kira singled out a directive the Ministry of Education issued in 2006 regarding zero-tolerance punishment against students who break school rules.

Kira furthermore took up a case in Fukuyama City in Hiroshima in which a schoolgirl had been arrested for committing "an act of violence toward a teacher" but in fact she had just shook herself free from the teacher's grasp when being reprimanded.

She said, "Unnaturally oppressive school rules should be outlawed," and demanded that the Ministry drop the directive adopting the zero-tolerance policy.

Past related articles:
> Project launched to redress irrational school rules [December 22, 2017]
> Forced dark-dying hair at school violates human rights: JCP Kira [December 6 & 10, 2017]
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