Convener(s): Professor Takehiko Kariya and Dr. Natalia Doan
Speaker(s): Professor Misako Nukaga (Professor at the Graduate School of Education, University of Tokyo), Professor Fumiko Takahashi (Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Arts and Science, University of Tokyo), and Professor Tomoko Tokunaga (Associate Professor at the Institute of Human Science at the University of Tsukuba)
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How do Japanese public high schools respond to immigrant students? Challenges of diversity and educational equity in Tokyo
Japan has experienced an influx of immigrants due to its low birthrate, ageing population, and shortage of labor force. While public education is expected to accommodate culturally and linguistically diverse students, recent studies reveal that immigrant students have lower enrollment rates to higher education and lower rates of employment compared to Japanese students. Our research group conducted a survey of Tokyo metropolitan high schools and interviews with schoolteachers to explore how schools respond to immigrant students and what they perceive as challenges. Based on survey responses from 56 schools and interviews with teachers from 30 schools, we will examine how schools identify immigrant students and recognize their educational needs. Then we will explore how schools provide career support for immigrant students and how they work with community organizations to provide equitable educational opportunities. We will discuss the possibilities and challenges of inclusion and empowerment of immigrant students while examining the strengths and weaknesses of Japanese education.
Misako Nukaga is a Professor at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Tokyo. She earned her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research interests lie at the intersections between immigration, ethnicity, gender, and education. Aiming to create a culturally inclusive education for minority students, she is currently engaged in a cross-national project that examines the relationship between different education systems and the well-being of second-generation immigrant youth.
Fumiko Takahashi is an Associate Professor at Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, The University of Tokyo. She received her D.Phil. in Sociology at University of Oxford. She studies migrant education in Japan with a focus on schoolteachers and the majority’s privileges in educational system. Her latest publication includes Takahashi, F. (2020). Japaneseness in immigrant education: Toward culturally responsive teaching in Japan. Educational Studies in Japan, 14, 15-27.
Tomoko Tokunaga is an Associate Professor of the Institute of Human Sciences at the University of Tsukuba. She received her Ph.D in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. She has conducted Participatory Action Research (PAR) in an attempt to empower and support creation of ibasho among immigrant youth. She is the author of Learning to Belong in the World: An Ethnography of Asian American Girls (Springer, 2018).
Joined in the Q&A by team members:
Akiko Miura is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Chukyo University. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology from Hitotsubashi University. Her main research interests include social integration and ethnic identity formation of second-generation immigrants in Japan. She has been conducting fieldwork in areas with large immigrant populations for many years in order to clarify how second-generation immigrants grew up within ethnic networks.
Ayumi Fukawa is an Associate Professor of the Center of Academic Support Center at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology from Hitotsubashi University. Her research interests focus on the social integration of migrant and refugee children in Germany and the changing role of schools. She's doing field research at the all-day school in Germany.
Yunjeong Kim is a Professor at the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Tokyo Metropolitan University. She received her Ph.D in Pedagogy at University of Tokyo in 2006. She examined the formation of multicultural education in Japan from the regional movements of Koreans and Japan in Japan since the 1970s. Her recent research includes analysis of literacy and multicultural education in South Korea.