Monday, July 06, 2009

Japanese court orders school to make accommodations so that girl can attend junior high school

Shimoichi, Japan, July 4, 2009 - After a provisional injunction by the Nara District Court, 12-year-old Meika Taniguchi, who uses a wheelchair, and who could not be admitted to her local junior high school because of its inaccessibility, finally attended the school for the first time on July 3. From The Mainichi Daily News:

The Shimoichi Municipal Board of Education allowed the girl to attend Shimoichi Municipal Junior High School after the Nara District Court issued a provisional injunction ordering that she be admitted to the school.

The education board has appealed the decision to the Osaka High Court.

"I'm happy. I want to speak with my friends and learn English at the junior high school," said Meika Taniguchi, 12, just before heading to the school on Friday morning, as she was carried on her mother's back in front of their home in the town of Shimoichi.

Asked about the new school uniform she was wearing, Taniguchi said with a smile, "It's big for me now, but I think it will fit some day."

On July 2, Taniguchi had trouble sleeping because she was too excited -- "just like before going to a field trip," according to her mother.

Taniguchi finally met her friends again at the school on Friday, for the first time in about three months since their elementary school graduation.