By Richard Lynn
Educational criteria in Japan are the top on the planet. during this first accomplished learn of those criteria Professor Richard Lynn concludes that eastern kids are approximately years prior to their contemporaries in Europe and the United States.
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As the academic reputation of the school has grown the demand for places has increased and entry is now very competitive. It is estimated that to have even a chance of admission a boy has to be comfortably in the top 1 per cent of the ability range and that of these only one in three is actually admitted to the school. Academic standards at the school are very high and the boys have a strong sense of being part of an elite. Given the public interest in elite schools in Japan, journalists quite frequently interview boys from the school and ask them what they intend to be when they are grown up.
Only Nishi, by virtue of the favourable catchment area in which it was located, just retained a position towards the bottom of the list. A variety of ingenious stratagems were adopted by a number of parents anxious to get their sons into Nishi. Some bought houses in the school's catchment area, while others took accommodation addresses, arranged for their sons to lodge nominally with relations or friends, or simply faked residence near the school to fulfil the new residential requirements. But most middle-class parents, who could afford the fees, began to send their children to the private high schools.
By 1982 the private senior high schools had pulled ahead, obtaining 48 per cent of places. There are close parallels in the effects of comprehensivisation on reducing equality of opportunity between Japan and Britain. In Britain, as in Japan, the state grammar schools and direct grant schools were free to intellectually able children from working-class families in the period from 1944 to the 1970s. The abolition of this free access to elite academic schools in the mid-1970s has cut off this route to upward social mobility for working-class children, and likewise resulted in a system which is more differentiated by social class and is less meritocratic.