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【NEWS】March 29,2014
Rally to Stop Abe’s Education “Revival” Plan and to Preserve and Implement the Constitution --- over 2,700 people including many teachers and school staff from all over Japan participated
More than 2,700 enthusiastic and engaged people from across the country gathered in the “March 39 Rally” co-organized by ZENKYO, Education Trade Union Liaison and the National Center for Children held at Hibiya Outdoor Music Hall in downtown Tokyo to hat Prime Minister’s “education revival plan”.  The Rally also received support and messages from 44 trade unions and 70 individuals all over Japan.  The South Korean Teachers’ Union KTU as well as the NUTP of Malaysia also sent their messages of solidarity.

Participants were dressed in creative ways to add vivid colors to the rally: green overcoats (Osaka), yellow hats (Kochi) hats with Mt. Fuji carrying the sign “Never send the children to battlefields again”  (Shizuoka), with “Hikonyan” the mascot character of Hikone City with the sign “I love the Constitution” (Shiga).  Ll over the music hall, they exhibited posters and banners with slogans entrusted to them by their colleagues and local people who could not attend the rally to show that teachers around the country were united and share the same demands.

Yoichi KOMORI, professor at Tokyo University Graduate School and General Secretary of “Article 9 Association” gave a talk in the rally.  He said that Abe’s Education Revival Plan represents five arrows shot at children, their parents, teachers nd school staff.  The fives arrows are: 1. Reform of authorizing system of textbooks to ideologically control the population : 2. Control on education through publication of the results per school of national achievement tests: 3. Introduction of “moral education” as a teaching subject to control children’s personalities; 4. Financial control through reduction of teachers’ posts instead of creating 30 pupils classes; 5. Reform of the Education Boardsto control education administratively.  He then reassured the audience by saying “If we can mobilize the public opinion strongly enough to provoke a sharp drop in his popularity, we can make Abe government to step down” and concluded “ Let us together work hard to create such mobilization”.

The Rally included short talks given by the representatives of five regional blocks reminding their favorite constitutional provisions “I LOVE CONSTITUTION”,  high school teachers and students from Okinawa, Nagano, Osaka, Miyagi and Tokyo taking turns to give short talks, Eisah brigade made up of teachers from Saitama prefecture, small live concert of “fathers’ music bands” from all over Japan and a huge choir of about 100 singers who were current and past union members or members of choir circles.  After the rally, the participants walked to Ginza shouting the slogan “Stop Abe’s Education Revival Plan!”

 
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