MEXT Action Plan for Society Where Japanese and Foreigners Coexist

On June 17, The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) compiled a report that lists new policies regarding educational environments related to the acceptance of foreigners into Japanese society.

The number of child students who need Japanese language education and the number of Japanese language learners have seen major increases in recent years. In addition, due to the enforcement of April 2019’s Revised Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law, it is predicted that there will be a large increase in the number of foreign child students.

With these changes to Japanese society, MEXT is planning to guarantee educational opportunities for foreign children, as well as improve Japanese language education for foreigners, in order to better realize a society where Japanese people and foreigners can coexist.
In accordance with these aims, MEXT lists the following items in their report, as a directive regarding new policies to work on to help foreigners in Japanese society.

■ Improve education for foreign children:
1. Further refine instruction systems in schools:
– Improve the faculty and care workers in schools.
– Improve the abilities of faculty, by guaranteeing nationwide training opportunities.
– Help more students to move on to middle and high school, as well as improving career support.
– Improve support for foreign children with disabilities.

2. Guarantee education opportunities and coexistence by connecting and cooperating with regional communities:
– Help people understand conditions for entering school as well as promoting the entering of schools.
– Set up middle school night programs and improve education activities.
– Improve education, based on an understanding of other cultures and living together in a multicultural society, and include regional communities in these efforts.

■ Improve Japanese language education for foreigners:
Guarantee Japanese language education opportunities and improve quality:
– Develop Japanese language education for foreigners who live in Japan, Guarantee learning opportunities.
– Improve all aspects of Japanese language education.
– Improve the quality of Japanese language education institutions.
– Improving support for foreign children with disabilities.

■ Promote domestic job hunting for foreign students, be thorough in registration management:
1. Promote domestic job hunting for foreign students.
2. Be thorough in registration management for foreign students.

As for more concrete efforts, the report lists utilizing ICT in fields of education, starting with multilingual translation systems, as well as establishing middle school night programs. It also discusses the materialization and development of the (temporary) Foreign Student Job Hunting Promotion Credit Program.

Guaranteeing education opportunities for foreign children, as well as improving Japanese language education, will lower the hurdles that foreign talent face living in Japan. It’s expected that this will lead to the promotion of more foreign talent being accepted in Japan.

[Reference Site] Report from Foreign Acceptance and Coexistence Education Investigation Team – MEXT
[Reference Site] Report from Foreign Acceptance and Coexistence Education Investigation Team (PDF File)

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