Great Teamwork Between the Japanese Government and People
Hi, it’s Derek from Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi. I think the Japanese people have been very supportive of government efforts to contain coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Japan. During Japan’s states of emergency between April 7 and May 26, following voluntary stay-at-home and social distancing directives may very well have contributed to the reduction in coronavirus cases. Together with the government’s success in focusing on finding clusters of infections and attacking the underlying causes, the government was able to control the virus and have all states of emergencies for all areas of Japan lifted in a little over 1.5 months. That was a great accomplishment! What great teamwork! Japan is a good role model for the rest of the world! Well done, Japan!
Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi’s Support of the State of Emergency for Hyogo Prefecture
On April 7, the Japanese government declared a state of emergency for Hyogo Prefecture (as well as some other prefectures) to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi is located in Hyogo Prefecture. Smith’s Head Office gave me the option of keeping my school open following COVID-19 risk reductions guidelines or closing it temporarily. To support the government and for the safety of my students and myself, I decided to close my English school from April 8. In May, I offered online lessons to my students who wished to do them in the meantime. On May 21, the state of emergency was lifted so I reopened Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi on May 22. I thank all my students for their patience and understanding during that time.
Examples of Ongoing Support by Japanese Businesses and the Japanese People to Stop the Spread of COVID-19
In Tsukaguchi, Amagasaki near my English school, I see many people wearing masks. Not long ago, I saw open windows on trains for better air circulation. Some people practice social distancing on trains and most people wear masks. Some shops offer customers a chance to sanitize their hands when they enter. I see seats being arranged to better offer social distancing to customers. I also see lines on the floor telling customers in banks and stores where to stand for social distancing. These are some examples of the great ongoing support and teamwork to stop the spread of COVID-19. I am proud to be doing my part at Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi with the Smith’s COVID-19 transmission risk reduction guidelines.
Smith’s COVID-19 Transmission Risk Reduction Guidelines
At Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi, we are following nine COVID-19 transmission risk reduction guidelines. Smith’s Head Office drew up these guidelines based on its research and advice from professionals. Some of these safety guidelines are everybody having to wear a mask, disinfecting things that we touch, hand sanitizing, air cleaning and social distancing. I would like to thank my students for their support and patience as we get through this challenging time together. I also would like to thank Smith’s Head Office for the time and effort spent on preparing the COVID-19 transmission risk reduction guidelines. It is helping keep all Smith’s English teachers and English students safe. This great Head Office support is another reason why I love owning my own Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi.
Going Back to Normal Life in Japan
I recently asked some Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi students if they thought their lives would ever go back to normal. It certainly is not an easy question to answer now. I think it will! In fact, life is already gradually going back to normal here in Japan. We have seen travel restrictions being lifted, businesses reopening and the number of people allowed to gather for public gatherings increasing. COVID-19 vaccine testing is scheduled to start on June 30 as Japan hopes to come up with its own homegrown vaccine. These are all positive signs of recovery.
Of course for now, “normal” has to include taking precautions such as doing social distancing, wearing masks, washing our hands often and avoiding crowded places and small, closed places with poor air circulation. We need to make these daily habits. As we are all in this together, we all need to make the effort to do our part. A group effort is needed. Teamwork!
Yes We Can!
This motivational catchphrase famously used by former President Barack Obama in the 2008 U.S. presidential campaign suits this particular time in history. Can Japan and the rest of the world overcome COVID-19? Yes we can together through teamwork! The Japanese are doing this well and setting a good example for the rest of the world. I am proud to be a part of it. Let’s keep up the great work, Japan!