Departmental Bulletin Paper 日本近代公教育の成立過程における教育理念の変遷 : 教育観の質的変容の整理を中心に
The Transitions of Educational Ideals in the Formation Process of Modern Public Education in Japan : Between the Late Edo Period and the Early Meiji Period

鶴田, 真紀  ,  Maki, TSURUTA

(68)  , pp.169 - 180 , 2017-03-31 , 創価大学教育学部・教職大学院
This paper aims to clarify how the educational ideals for children have changed qualitatively, by examining the time the modern public education system was introduced. Discussions on the concept of education for children of a certain age or the whole society in Japan began only in modern times. In the late Edo period, many children were learning “tenarai” (calligraphy) at Terakoya (the school system for the children of commoners operated at Buddhist temples). The terakoya had been operated in close contact with the lives of children. The children of farmers were required to have literacy skills in order to read books on agriculture. Furthermore, some children were expected to be in charge of administration, such as donation and litigation using their literacy skills in the future. The children of merchants and craftsmen were required to possess literacy and numeracy skills, especially to calculate with an abacus, in order to assume responsibility of the family business in the future. On the other hand, the children of the samurais, who would become the future family head were learning martial arts, “kanseki” (chinese texts) and etiquette from their fathers. Therefore, these children of farmers, merchants, craftsmen, and samurais had different types of and purposes for learning, depending on their position in society. However, there had been an educational ideal that all children share, namely, children were regarded as a “child of a family.” However, “family,” in this context, does not mean a private group of individuals connected by blood relationships or marriages, but rather a social organization transcending individuals related to a community. In the Meiji era, public education as a modern school education system in Japan began as a result of the promulgation of Gakusei (the Education System Order) in 1872 (Meiji 5). Thereby, the terakoya was criticized by the Meiji government, and the children were required to change their place of learning from the terakoya to the school. This resulted in the transformation of the education ideal from “child of a family” in the terakoya into “child of a nation” in modern schools. However, modern public education did not immediately penetrate into the society. Even though the government's policy is “child of a nation,” at the level of the community, it was still considered “a child of a family.” For farmers who needed to acquire knowledge and skills concerning agriculture in particular, the educational content in modern schools was far from the expectations of the parents. As a form of rebellion against modern school system by the farmers, a series of “school destruction cases” occurred. Thus, the school system, which had initially triggered a protest, was gradually accepted by the people as a compulsory enrollment system laid down in education reform through the Third Elementary School Ordinances in 1990 (Meiji 33). That meant the people had accepted and recognized the idea of “child of a nation.”

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