- 東京大学大学院教育学研究科紀要 (ISSN:13421050)
- vol.44, pp.149-157, 2005-03-10
The purpose of this paper is to explain why some polices are implemented regardless of short of support, and why some policies are not implemented although lots of people hope to do so. To make this clear, I examine the problem of commercially produced tests. The reason I take this topic is that I can easily compare three similar cases because the former two cases were not resolved but the latter case was resolved. Therefore we can understand the differences between the successful and the unsuccessful clearly as we controlled the case. Excessive competition for the entrance examination had been one of the major topics at educational field in Japan for a long time. To pass the exam, students go to cram school, so-called juku, and take commercially produced tests several times at their own school eagerly. In the opinion of the bureaucrats at the Ministry of Education, these situations promoted excessive competition. Then they tried to stop using them at schools in 1976 and 1983, however, they failed. Finally they succeeded to remove these tests at school in 1993. What is the difference? At the last case, minister of education and executive played an important role. They used mass communication cleverly. They appealed to public opinion about the unfairness of entrance exam by commercially produced tests. The image of using commercially produced tests became worse and the actors around the schools and educational fields wanted to avoid criticized for using them. Although the Ministry of Education didn't have legal force to remove them at school, they were removed. There leaves one important problem. The government decided to take public opinion the highest priority. Needless to say, it is very important. However this public opinion leaves ambiguous and idealistic, and nobody knows how many people believe and agree with it. Furthermore, the Ministry of Education didn't follow up this problem after removal of commercially produced tests and it ignored the teachers'opinion. After 1990s, the Ministry of Education tends to give public image or public opinion priority over teachers'opinion. The teachers who work at school are thrown into confusion. We have to find another way to implement the policy considering both the public and teachers.