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教育政策 子どもの将来見据えた論戦を

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Dec. 12, 2012)
Election debates should take up education policy
教育政策 子どもの将来見据えた論戦を(12月11日付・読売社説)

Voters pay special attention to education policy. How should the children who will be responsible for Japan's future be nurtured? Each political party should present a clear future vision in this regard.
 教育政策は有権者の関心が高い。次代を担う子どもたちをどう育成するのか。各党はその将来像を示すべきである。

The Liberal Democratic Party listed education as a priority in its policy pledges for the upcoming House of Representatives election. It is one of the party's four pillars for national revival, along with the economy, diplomacy and quality of life. The party's proposals include reinstating Saturday classes and reviewing the current system of six years of primary school, three years each of middle and high school and four years of university.
 公約で教育を重点課題に掲げたのは自民党だ。経済、外交、暮らしと並ぶ再生の4本柱に位置づけ、「土曜授業の復活」や「6・3・3・4制の見直し」などを挙げている。

LDP President Shinzo Abe probably wants to try again on education reform, which he aimed at while he was prime minister but left only half-done.
 安倍総裁には、首相時代に、道半ばに終わった教育改革に再挑戦する思いもあろう。

===

Undue influence of teachers union

In the election campaign, Abe has repeatedly said the Democratic Party of Japan, which is influenced by the Japan Teachers Union, cannot be entrusted with the task of truly reviving the nation's education.
 安倍氏はこれまでの選挙戦で、日本教職員組合の影響を受けている民主党には、真の教育再生はできない、と繰り返し述べている。

For example, the national achievement test, which was introduced in 2007 to improve schoolchildren's academic abilities, was scaled down after the DPJ took power, so that instead of having all students in targeted years participate, the test was given only at a sample of about 30 percent of schools nationwide. The shift came out of consideration for criticism from the teachers union that such a test would invite competition.
 学力向上策として2007年に始まった全国学力テストは、民主党に政権移行後、全員参加方式から約3割を抽出する方式に縮小された。「競争をあおる」という日教組の批判に配慮したものだ。

Because the sampling method targets a smaller number of schools, detailed analysis of results cannot be conducted. It is understandable that the LDP argues for returning to the full participation format.
 抽出方式で対象校が減り、きめ細かな分析ができなくなった。自民党が全員参加方式に戻すと主張しているのは理解できる。

Making public high school tuition-free was one of the DPJ-led administration's pet policy measures. The LDP has proposed this be limited to children whose parents earn under a certain amount.
 民主党政権の目玉政策の一つである高校授業料の無償化についても、自民党は対象に所得制限を設ける方針を打ち出した。

On the other hand, it is a cause for concern that the LDP itself has made policy proposals that would require large-scale fiscal spending, such as one to make preschool education tuition-free.
 一方で、幼児教育の無償化など大規模な財政支出を伴う政策を盛り込んだことは懸念される。

Under the current fiscal situation, which borders on crisis, it is essential to secure fiscal resources. If the LDP is serious about returning to power, it should not end up listing policy measures simply to please the public. Rather, we want it to present a realistic policy course.
 危機的な財政状況の中では、財源の確保が重要だ。政権復帰を目指す以上、大衆受けする政策を並べるだけでなく、現実的な道筋を示してもらいたい。

Meanwhile, we consider the DPJ's policy pledges on education insufficient, as they offer little in concrete terms.
 民主党の教育に関する公約が具体策に乏しいのは物足りない。

===

Unclear role of education boards

In this election, the role of boards of education is another important issue, especially after the functional inability of the Otsu Municipal Board of Education came to light following the suicide of a middle school student in the city who had been bullied.
 今回の選挙では、教育委員会の在り方も重要な論点である。大津市の中学生がいじめを受けて自殺した事件で、市教委の機能不全が問題視されたためだ。

The LDP proposes that full-time school superintendents appointed by the heads of local governments with the consent of local assemblies should be in charge of education boards.
 自民党は、議会の同意を得て首長が任命する常勤の教育長を責任者とするよう提案している。

Regarding this point, the DPJ's policy pledges say only that the education board system should be reviewed.
 この点でも民主党は「制度の見直し」を公約しているだけだ。

Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party) suggests the system be abolished, while Your Party proposes that local governments be given discretion over issues concerning the system.
 日本維新の会は「制度の廃止」に言及し、みんなの党は「自治体による選択制」を主張する。

Under the current education board system introduced shortly after the end of World War II, education board members, appointed from among local residents, have a council system to make decisions on such important issues as teacher personnel affairs and the adoption of textbooks, to keep education from being politically influenced by local government heads.
 戦後導入された教委制度では、教育が首長による政治的な影響を受けないよう、地域住民の中から任命された教育委員が合議制で、教員の人事や教科書採択などの重要事項を決めてきた。

But it cannot be denied that where responsibilities lie has become unclear as the education board system has become a mere formality despite its intended independence. Who will be responsible for education? In-depth discussions should be held on this point.
 だが、独立性を付与したはずの仕組みが形骸化し、責任の所在が不明確になっている面は否めない。教育に誰が責任を持つのか、踏み込んだ議論が求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Dec. 11, 2012)
(2012年12月11日01時46分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2012-12-13 06:41 | 英字新聞

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