Two Straight Years of Increase


A title like this could be a sign for hope, if only the increase in question were something positive. Arriving at school this morning I found a memo addressed to all the Principals in Tsu regarding traffic accidents for Board of Education employees. The year ending March 31st, 2010 had the fewest reported accidents over a four year period at 62 incidents. Last year shot up to 95 incidents making it a record year, but a short-lived record. The purpose of the memo was to highlight the fact that figures through the first ten months of this year show 104 incidents, on pace for more than 120.

Following their typical pattern, the memo explains the trouble which will be caused by this trend and makes an appeal to change the problem. As usual their worry is not what people with common sense would focus on and there is no constructive evaluation of why the problem is occurring nor how to affect the desired improvement, merely a demand that the situation improve. Rather than concern about safety, increased costs to the school system, insurance problems, etc. the concern expressed in the memo is that students and guardians will have trouble trusting the Board of Education.

Since the change is so extreme – doubling in two years – I am very curious about the cause, and think it would be instructive in the process of reducing accidents. Has there been an increase in off-site business activities which increased the number of kilometers traveled? Has something increased the number of solo trips or trips using individuals’ vehicles? Has there been a change in time pressure applied by Principals?

While this problem is not pleasant, it actually does not come as a surprise since I often see dangerous activities and try to address them at the schools. In one case, I was almost struck by a Principal leaving a parking space without looking. I really wanted to discuss this incident; however, the Principal never mentioned it at all and I was afraid to bring it up myself since I felt his action was unacceptable. Generally, my observation is that our Board of Education is amply staffed with people who feel they are exemplary; hence there is little chance for honest discussion about improvement.


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5 Responses to “Two Straight Years of Increase”

  1. me Says:

    Nothing to share~just noticing you haven’t posted and know you are busy. Still, you are thought of! 🙂

  2. me Says:

    Hey~saw your last fb and wondered how you celebrate Hanami? I’m hoping to get our homeschool group to enjoy a picnic under the cherry blossoms with our nature sketchpads ready and maybe some facts about Japan… (((((HUGS))))) sandi

  3. me Says:

    I am wondering about your calligraphy for some reason~I think I saw some Korean writing and thought it was beautiful, which made me think of asking you about scripture in Japanese. Are you still practicing?

    • びっくり Says:

      Still practicing, but practice has been a little thin this year as I have been taking care of some “issues”. Soon, I hope to be back practicing calligraphy, studying Japanese, blogging, exercising, etc.

      I haven’t written any Korean, but sometimes Katakana resembles it so people get confused easily.

      Studying scripture in Japanese can be quite difficult. Even in English many people are put off at first because of difficult language.

  4. me Says:

    I would actually like to learn Korean. My 14yos would like to learn Japanese! We are deciding what language to do the high school years.

    May your issues be resolved peacefully and happily and speedily! Can’t wait to have you back. 🙂

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