Media March 2011

Schools Blamed for Low Ranking

Cardiff University ranked Japan low and Britain high in the biggest global survey on knowledge of pregnancy and sterility, the Mainichi Shimbun reported on 14 February. “Lack of knowledge and a feeling that childcare is a burden has possibly helped lower the birth rate in Japan”, the survey said.

The university and a pharmaceutical firm polled about 10,000 people with an average age of 31 from 18 countries, including 481 Japanese. Just 35% of Japanese women and 37% of men got full marks, coming 17th and 16th, respectively. Turkey was last in both genders while New Zealand women and Danish men came top. British men were 4th and women 3rd.

Prof Akiko Mori, of St. Luke’s College of Nursing in Tokyo, said Japanese schools don’t really teach reproduction and how women’s bodies change with age. “We must have a well-structured curriculum and train people who can teach this subject”.