The public outcry over the bullying incident at Higashisuma Elementary School in Kobe is intensifying as parents and caretakers express outrage over the school's handling of the matter.

As reported on October 4th by the Japan Times, four teachers bullied a colleague by pinning his arms and rubbing curry into his eyes. The teacher went on leave last month. In response, the school removed the four bullying teachers from their teaching positions and are considering disciplinary action.

However, the school's briefing on October 16th left many parents and caretakers angry and perplexed. As the Mainichi Shimbun reports, it was revealed that the incident had also traumatized students, resulting in four of them missing school for several days, two of whom are still unable to attend. TV Asahi obtained recordings from the 3-hour-long closed-door meeting which revealed that the Kobe Municipal Board of Education read prepared apologies by the four bullying teachers, prompting parents to complain that the teachers were not present to deliver the apologies themselves. The school also explained it would renovate the home economics classroom where the incident took place. One parent asked if the bullying teachers were on paid leave, to which a board member replied that the four were "recuperating" while they investigated what action to take.

School "fires" curry, keeps teachers (for now)

One more measure the school implemented was removing curry from the students' lunches indefinitely. This caused a minor uproar on Japanese social media, with many questioning the logic and the wisdom of such as reaction.

For example, Osaka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura tweeted:

A similar opinion was voiced by Twitter user @kanzusan27:

On the other hand, Twitter user @imamuraenpire revealed that some parents approved the decision.

Indian restaurant springs to curry's defense

Meanwhile, in a Tweet which has already garnered over 160,000 likes (at the time of writing), an Indian restaurant called Indian Kitchen Dhaba(印度屋キッチン ダバ 下香貫店)in Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture, has become the hero of the moment on Japanese social media for pointing out the obvious:

It seems there's even a hashtag now making the rounds called #カレーに罪はない (curry is innocent), where Twitter users are posting pictures of tasty curry dishes and expressing their anger at the school's decision.

By - Ben K.