Japan: Teacher helps fill school void on LGBT issues

Despite rising sensitivity toward sexual minorities in Japan, schools have a long way to go to improve the environment for LGBT students. But an elementary school teacher from Mie Prefecture hopes her efforts will result in change.

Takako Ogura, 57, a teacher at a public grade school in the town of Meiwa, has introduced her own textbook to teach students about gender identity disorders and related issues in her health and physical education classes. According to a recent survey by advertising giant Dentsu Inc., 1 in 13, or 7.6 percent, of 70,000 people polled consider themselves part of the LGBT community. 

To address the situation, the education ministry in April issued a notice calling on all elementary, junior high and high schools to take measures to prevent bullying and discrimination against LGBT students. Ministry officials, however, admit that school textbooks lack information to encourage students to deepen their understanding on the issue.  Read more via Japan Times