Principal protests Tokyo education board's ban on teacher voting - Mainichi Daily News:
"A high school principal in the Tokyo city of Mitaka has spoken out against the Tokyo Metropolitan Board of Education's ban on school teachers taking votes or shows of hands at staff meetings, saying the ban has thrown a wet blanket on meetings, it has emerged.
Speaking out against the ban is 59-year-old Nobuo Dohi, the principal of Mitaka Senior High School. It is extremely rare for an active principal to publicly speak out against guidelines issued by the metropolitan education board.
In April 2006, the board sent metropolitan high schools a notice saying, "Using methods such as shows of hands and voting at school meetings to confirm the intentions of teachers is inappropriate and is to be stopped." It urged schools to make planning and coordination meetings of principals and executives the main place to settle matters.
...After the notice was sent around, the Tokyo Metropolitan Board of Education monitored high schools under its jurisdiction and handed strict warnings to principals who made teachers give a show of hands to express their opinions about the instruction of students or school events. By February 2007, there were no schools conducting the practice.
Kenichi Watanabe, 64, a former principal of Tokyo Metropolitan Kurume High School, criticized the ban.
"It's the equivalent of saying to teachers, 'Stay quiet without thinking anything.' There's no way lively education activities could emerge under those circumstances."
The education board, however, remains firm in its stance.
"Even if some principals oppose it, we were not going to withdraw the notification that we sent to everyone," an education board official said."