44. In the judicial precedent - Disciplinary Punishment
  of the disobedient teachers in Japan

 Shoji Sugita

    In the judicial precedent, there are few cases of disciplinary punishment of disobedient teachers
    in Japan, though there are a lot of cases in the United States.
And in Japan, almost all of the disciplinary punishments are Written Warning . Of course, I don't
think the more severe cases would be the better, but I think if there extremely few, it might be
bad, for the management of teachers is questioned to be too loose.

In Hanrei Jiho: Judicial Precedent Review, there are not latest cases, but the one in 1991 is the
newest, so I checked Hanrei Times: Judicial Precedent Times at first, and found a few cases
there. They are the cases of the graduation ceremonies of schools and particulary of National
Anthem of Japan: Kimigayo and National Flag of Japan: Hinomaru ( Rising-sun flag ), and some
teachers were disobedient to the order given by the principals about the issues.
TAction of a home room teacher in the graduation ceremony of a public
 elementary school

            Fukuoka District Court,   Jan.24, 1998 decision    Hanrei Times No. 965
1. Outline
  A home room teacher of a public elementary school was seated in Kimigayo unison at the
 graduation ceremony of the school and rised his fist to the parents and the guests of the
 ceremony when he guided the students to leave the hall of the ceremony.

  This act by him was considered to be disobedient to the principal and " losing teacher
 credibility" ,and he was punished with Written Warning by the Board of Education and the
 Court affirmed the punishment to be right. 
2. Fact
〇 The sixth grade pupils of a public elementary school of whom he had taken charge as the
  home room teacer made the flag ( Guernica ) which they had copied from the picture of
  Guernica by  Picasso, and had wanted it to be put on the stage during the graduation
  ceremony, but in reality on the day, it was put at the back of the hall of the ceremony and
was hoisted on the front stage.
〇A graduating student from his class was seated when Kimigayo was sung in unison and
  shouted, " I can not sing such an anthem." two times during her speech when every gaduating
  student was present there shortly, she stated, " I am very angry with the principal."

〇When the confused ceremony finished and the teacher guided his students to leave the hall
  of the ceremony, he rised his fist of the right hand to the parents and the guests of the
3. Decision
〇 We don't think his sitting down in the Kimigayo unison was not an action without reason, but
  we think it was some action with the resistance of the unison, for the flag ( Guernica ) was not
  hoisted on the fron stage and at his former school he had been sitting down in the Kimigayo
  unison, because of resistance to the anthem.

  There, he had made a tear picture for the graduation ceremony, however it was not hoisted on
  the front stage at the ceremony of the school and he was angry with it and insisted against
  the anthem, too.

〇 And more, we think his rising his fist to the parents and the guests of the ceremony was
  his intentive display of the protest or the victory of his resistance agaist the ceremony.

〇 We think the Board of Education invesgated the facts suitably, so we affirmed Written Warning
to be right.
  I think disciplinary punisment is not be clarified in Written Warning in the United States, but
  there, heavier punishment would be administered. But, I will comment more as follows:
  In Japan, Written Warning means not only warning punishment, but also means
  postponed a raise in salary and means reduced retiring allowance in the future,
  so it will be more severe punishment than it looks like.
U A teacher's act in the gaduation ceremony of a public high school
           Urawa District Court,   June 28, 1999 decision     Hanrei Times No. 1037
1. Outline
  A home room teacher distributed some printed materials to his students directing them to
 oppose Hinomaru in the graduation ceremony of the school and let the students go back
 home on the graduation ceremony reharsal day.
  The Board of Education punished him as Written Warning , because of losing teacher
  credibility and violation of the obligation of teacher's and the Court affirmed the punishmet to
  be right.
2. Fact
  The teacher distributed some printed materials suggesting they oppose hoisting the Hinomaru
at the graduation ceremony of the school to the students and parents of his class and let the
 students go back home not to participate in the rehearsal of it. The topic was known widely
 among the community.
3. Decision
  He had to obey to the order of his principal of hoisting the Hinomaru.
  Boycott of the rehearsal of the graduation ceremony was widely known among the community.
  The Court affirmed the punishment l in favor of the Board.
【Comment】 As above-mentioned, I have the same opinion.
V Demand of entrance of the Conference of student displine problem
          Tokyo District Court,   Sept. 9, 1991 decisin    Hanrei Jiho No. 1404
1. Outline
  The Conference of Student Displine Problem by Metropolitan Board of Education was held
 in a hotel and a high school teacher demanded to join it without permission, and interrupted
  the job of the receptionists with force.
  The Board punished him as Written Warning and the Court affirmed it to be correct.
2. Fact
〇There was the notice with " No person should enter into the hall without permission by
   the Metropolitan Board of Education." in fron of the hall, but the teacher violently thrust
   aside three receptionists who denied to enter using his body and interrupted their jobs
   for about ten minutes.
3. Decision
〇The Conference conducted legal at all, therefore, his act was illegal.
   As for the conference, the Board had the right to give permission of attendance and
   should be up to discretion of the Board.
Written Warning is the lightest disposal in the disciplinary punishment and in this case, it
   was in the legal range.
 This case was concerning Training of the Teachers on the Article 20 of the Special Law of
  Teachers, however even if considring of it's self-study by teachers, the punishment would be
 light punishment.
W Refusal of X-ray inspection of chest
          Nagoya District Court   May 29, 1996       Hanrei Times No. 941
1. Outline
  A junior high school teacher was ordered to receive an X-ray inspection of his chest, but as he
  had had X-ray exposure in the past and thought it was harmful for him, he refused it two times.
  Then, the Board of Education punished him as Salary Reduction Punishment for two months,
  and the Court affirmed it to be right.
2. Decision 
 〇 The principal and the Board thought the students should not be effected with tuberculosis
    from the teacher.
 〇 However, there is no regulation which obligates to school personnel to have an X-ray
   in the School Health Law, and Mr. Yoshino of Tokyo University expressed the opinion that
   mass screening with X-rays would have more risk of the younger person than somebody of
   fourty years old and might be less useful.
 〇 More, the teacher had reported to the principal of the result of his sputum check and there
    were no abnormality.
 〇 Therefore, we think it is not right for him to be obliged to follow the order from the principal.

 And the Court didn't take up the issues of his office secession for one hour, because of general
 demand and questions of teachers.
 I can not understand whether the examination of his sputum can take the place of the X-rays
 inspection of the chest or not, however, this is an unusual case and wil leave a lot of problems
 behind for the school education.
 In May 2001, described        Not to be copied without permission
           Japanese version, here