A Short History of Japanese Educational Development


In my own point of view, Japanese education can be described in three words “Very reformative, Transformative, and adoptive”.  After the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Japan began to adopt Western educational practices in an effort to modernize and strengthen the country. High-ranking government officials and students alike were sent abroad to study as the global study mission. The method has been a blueprint of modern development to and follow by many countries. After 1850, as part of its interaction with the West, Japan developed a modern conception of childhood. Leaders of the Meiji period decided that the nation-state should play the main part and the Western-style school was established.

(Japanese Students)

Following the Second World War, the same method were repeated to transform Japanese education and economy. The American model was used to rebuild the educational system. The education was focused on international engagement and eradicating of poverty- which come to adopt the democratization of education and liberalization of education.

What the most remarkable were the teachers’ role in education and social transformation. Teacher played the very indispensable roles to bring development and better-ness to the entire society. For the reasons that Japan need was badly need human resources to supply teaching professions and promote the diversification in teaching professions, various activities and policies were adopted and enacted in the national law. And one of the most remarkable is that until today, Japanese educational system put a very strong emphasis on teachers’ high standard and profession that lead to apply the concept of “Serious and Continuing Study”.

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