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Japan cram school spending surges to record highs amid pandemic

Parents rush to get children into private institutions that offer remote learning

Many schools in Japan were forced to close temporarily in 2020 and 2021 due to the coronavirus epidemic.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The cost of sending children to cram schools in Japan has hit an all-time high, the growth driven by COVID-related demand to attend private schools with distance-learning technology.

Families of public elementary school students paid 81,158 yen ($613) annually on average for tutoring classes in the previous fiscal year, according to data published Wednesday by the Education Ministry. This represents a 52% increase from the last survey conducted fiscal 2018.

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