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In Japan, parents want humane kids: Survey

For Japanese parents, it is more important for their children to be humane, than to be ambitious.

india Updated: Feb 09, 2006 13:55 IST

Many Japanese parents want their children to become adults who don't cause trouble, while their South Korean and Chinese counterparts hope their children will become top achievers, according to a survey released this week.

"One who takes good care of family" was the top pick in all cities where the poll by Benesse Corp. was conducted - Seoul, Beijing, Shanghai and Taipei except for Tokyo, where it ranked second.

"One who does not cause trouble to others," and "one who values friends," were among the characteristics most favoured by Japanese parents, who were least interested in leadership, principles, social contribution and respect from others, according to the study, released Tuesday.

The study also found that Japanese parents' academic goals for their children were lower than in other nations - only 2.2 per cent of Japanese parents wanted their children to pursue education through graduate school, compared to more than 70 percent in Beijing, 61 per cent in Taipei, 56 per cent in Shanghai and 46 per cent in Seoul.

Japanese parents were also least interested in sending their children to prestigious schools. Compared to more than 70 per cent of parents in Shanghai and Beijing, 41 per cent in Seoul and 34 per cent in Taipei, only 25 per cent of Japanese parents set their sights on a top school.

Japanese parents were also most relaxed about their children's lifestyles _ allowing their children the most sleep and TV viewing. The study found that the majority of Japanese mothers were full-time housewives, compared to less than 10 percent in Beijing and Shanghai, and one-fifth in Taipei.

A majority of mothers in Shanghai, Beijing and Taipei had full-time jobs. About half of mothers in Seoul worked full time.

The percentage of mothers in Japan who had a college education was the lowest among the five countries _ less than 19 per cent compared to more than one-third in the other four cities. Benesse surveyed 1,007 parents in Tokyo, 941 in Seoul, 992 in Beijing, 935 in Shanghai and 2,259 in Taipei - all with children aged 3 to 6 from March to June last year by sending out questionnaires to kindergartens. No margin of error was given. The company's businesses include education, language schools,publishing and research.

First Published: Feb 09, 2006 09:00 IST