[MEXT] Discussion by a Group of Experts on the Formulation of Standards for the Establishment of Special Schools

On September 30th, 2020, the “10th Meeting of Experts to Discuss the Ideal Nature of Special Schools in the New Era” was held and the formulation of standards for establishment of special schools was discussed. There is a chronic shortage of classrooms in special schools, due to an increase in the number of students enrolled. As of May 1st, 2019, there was a total shortage of 3,162 classrooms at special schools nationwide. In order to resolve this issue, several requests were made during the meeting, such as the construction or expansion of special school facilities during the “Period of intensive effort” which has been put in place from 2020 to 2024, and the utilization of vacant school buildings and classrooms for the purpose of special needs education. Moreover, it was proposed to set out standards for the establishment of special schools, which have not been formulated until now. These points were also made in the interim report, entitled “Aiming to Build Japanese-Style School Education in the Reiwa Era”, released by the Central Council for Education’s Subcommittee on Elementary and Secondary Education on September 28th, 2020.

Regarding standards for the establishment of special schools, the following points were deliberated at the meeting.  

  1. Whether or not the standards are to be set as the minimum standards required to establish a special school, and will include both general content that is common to all special schools, and content that requires consideration according to the individual situation, such as the type and degree of disability and the age of the students.
  2. Whether or not the newly established standards should be applied to existing schools for the time being.

For more details, please see the following link (Japanese only). https://www.mext.go.jp/kaigisiryo/2020/03/1422997_00004.htm