Education Ministry will seek funding to tackle teacher shortage

TOKYO, Aug 23 (NHK) - Japan's education ministry plans to offer financial support to help schools attract new teachers. The move comes as fewer people want to enter the profession due to its long hours and heavy workload.

The ministry aims to secure funding for the initiative as part of the draft budget for the fiscal year that starts in April.

It plans to request about 3.4 million dollars to cover the cost of setting up a new mechanism for school boards to work with universities and private-sector companies to find teachers. Former educators and ex-company workers, as well as athletes and artists, will be among those to be hired.

They would go through skill-building sessions and also get assistance to find positions at schools that are in need of staff.

The ministry also plans to request about 12 million dollars to help reduce the managerial tasks assigned to vice principals.

Former teachers or those with experience working on educational boards would be brought on to ease their burden.