433 Embassy in Washington to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 341 WASHINGTON, 10 March 1947, 6.17 p.m.

FEC.71-Japanese Education.

Reference our FEC.51 paragraph 2.We have had great difficulty in reaching an acceptable compromise. State Department desired to emphasise decentralisation. S.C.A.P. wanted Commission to prescribe as little detail as possible. New Zealand desired locally-elected bodies to control education, but Australia has received very strong support from Canada.

2. Following compromise has now been worked out, which is acceptable to U.S.A.

'Japanese Government should exercise such control over the educational system as will ensure the objectives of the occupation, particularly the reforms called for by this policy decision. Subject to the foregoing and to the maintenance of standards prescribed by the Government, the responsibility for the local administration of educational establishments should in due time be decentralised. Where practicable, parents and other local citizens should be associated in the control, development and work of the schools and other educational institutions.'

The Australian representative will state our views in detail at F.E.C. meeting which adopts paper, so that they may be forwarded to S.C.A.P. for his guidance as to degree and timing of decentralisation. [1]

1 On 27 March FEC adopted FEC-092/2,'Policy for the Revision of the Japanese Educational System'. Makin stated before the Commission that comprehensive educational reform was likely to be handled most effectively by a centralized government department but recommended that the carrying out of details of administration should be decentralized He suggested that this decentralization should be a gradual process and 'should keep pace with the progress of development of democratic thought among teachers and parents'.

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