In Japan, All Elementary Schools in Osaka Prefecture to Have Guards

Osaka Prefecture plans to hire security guards for all its 733 public elementary schools, except those in Osaka City, in the wake of the killing of a schoolteacher Monday in the city of Neyagawa, Osaka Gov. Fusae Ota said Friday. Each school will have one security guard to stand around the school gates watching out for intruders until pupils go home, Ota said in a news conference. The annual budget for the operations is estimated at about 700 million yen.

She indicated readiness to organize security teams consisting of school staff and parents to watch over children's safety. The teams, with the help of retired police officers, will patrol routes and parks as pupils go to and from school.

"Schools have to be a safe place again," Ota said.

Meanwhile, the education board of Tokyo's Nakano Ward decided Friday to provide tear gas canisters to all 1,000 teachers and other staffers working in the ward's public elementary and junior high schools as well as kindergartens, ward officials said.

They will be required to carry the canister wherever they go, they said.

The board will also distribute 10 clubs to each elementary school, and five to each junior high school to be placed on each floor of a school building for use in emergencies.

All of this equipment will be given out at the end of March, the board officials said.

The board plans to ask police to give training sessions for the teachers and staffs to instruct them in how to use the equipment.

Nakano, one of the 23 wards that comprise the central Tokyo, has 29 public elementary schools, 14 junior high schools and four kindergartens.