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School age violence

Japan With Kids - Forums: Education in Japan: School age violence
By Hugh Levinson on Thursday, January 4, 2001 - 12:26 am:

I am a producer with BBC radio in London and I am researching a programme about violence among schoolage children in Japan. I would very much like to hear from anyone who either has personal experience of this subject or who can give me any suggestions for further information.
With many thanks,

By Cornelia on Monday, March 5, 2001 - 12:49 am:

In a book review about:

Hikikomoru Wakamonotachi
[Withdrawn adolescents ]
by Mami Fukae

there is one case where:

"Satoshi Kato, not his real name, 21, has been living in seclusion since the night he was assaulted by some classmates during his first year at high school. He refused to explain exactly what inspired him to lock himself away, even to his parents. He refuses to dine with his family members, and never utters a word when he is talked to. His parents now communicate with him through memos, which are mostly limited to a list of items Satoshi wants to buy."

There is probably a lot of information on the subject, if you are Japanese literate. I am not so I can't offer too much info. The question is not entirely clear. By school-age violence, what exactly is meant? Very famous here is the violence of children against children (bullying). Juvenile violent crime is also on the uprise. I have heard/read little or nothing of violence by children before junior high. Either it happens very rarely, or it is censored from media discussion. Not always easy to tell.

By Hugh Levinson on Monday, March 5, 2001 - 6:01 pm:

I have now completed my radio documentary, which was broadcast last week. I also made a webpage on the subject, which you can see at

With thanks,
Hugh Levinson

Moderator's note:
"As of April 2001, victims will get more information about what happens in Family Courts, which try most teenage criminals. Victims will also for the first time be allowed to make statements to the court.

More controversially, the age at which young offenders can be tried in the criminal courts will go down from 16 to 14. And teenage murderers will in principle be tried like adults."


"[Lawyer, Yoshikuni Noguchi is] a supporter of the old Juvenile Law, which emphasises rehabilitation over punishment. As a result, relatively few young criminals in Japan are detained, and they are usually kept not in prisons but in Juvenile Training Schools. I was taken to see the oldest of them, the Tama Juvenile Training School at Hachioji in the suburbs of Tokyo."
etc. as well as several relevant links including:

Association for families of victims of youth crime (in Japanese)

By A.K. on Thursday, March 8, 2001 - 10:26 am:

There is an article on the subject of the boy (14 at the time, now 18) who beheaded the student in Kobe at this link:

He is in rehab now, and wants to become a writer.

I personally am a strong advocate of rehab for people who commit crimes in adolescence, alone or under peer pressure with raging hormones, etc. These kids are not fully cognizant of the finality of their acts, nor are they adults with experience in handling their inner turmoils, physical and emotional. These crimes hurt the victims and their families terribly, but in the case of children committing crimes, it is not fair to place the entire burden on them, we are all to blame.

Look at how they are using child soldiers in Africa! How easily these children can learn to do such terrible things under such dangerous circumstances. There is no way that they can be mentally equated to adults nor held mentally responsible for each action.

By Kathy Noll on Friday, June 29, 2001 - 5:30 am:

Hello everyone.

Did you know in the USA 1 out of 4 kids are bullied? I've had many people write to me to tell me this is going on in all different countries across the globe.
If you'd like to read more about Stopping Bullies and Ending School Violence, Please visit our web site:
We also have books and videos available.
Best Wishes,
Kathy Noll with Dr. Jay Carter
Authors, "Taking the Bully by the Horns"

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