Curriculum guidelines (学習指導要領 Gakushū shidō yōryō) is a standard issued by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) that specifies materials taught at all of elementary, junior and senior high schools in Japan, either public or private. The authority of the ministry to issue the standard is due to the enforcement regulations of the School Education Law (学校教育法施行規則 Gakkō kyōiku hō shikō kisoku). The ministry also publishes the commentary to the curriculum guidelines (学習指導要領解説 Gakushū shidō yōryō kaisetsu) that accompanies the guidelines. Nominally, the commentary is not legally binding.
The legal extent of the standard has been unclear. While the standard is not a law per se, court cases in the past have shown that it is legally binding to some extent. For example, in 1990, the High Court in Fukuoka ruled that a prefectural high school lawfully fired its teacher who taught a course in a way that violated curriculum guidelines.
- Corresponding Japanese Wikipedia article. Retrieved on 2008-02-16.
- 小学校学習指導要領 (in Japanese). Ministry of Education. 1998-12-14. Archived from the original on 2008-02-15. Retrieved 2008-02-16.
- 中学校学習指導要領 (in Japanese). Ministry of Education. 1998-12-14. Archived from the original on 2008-02-16. Retrieved 2008-02-16.
- 高等学校学習指導要領 (in Japanese). Ministry of Education. 1998-12-14. Archived from the original on 2008-02-16. Retrieved 2008-02-16.