Under 1,000 kids wait for childcare in Tokyo

The number of children on a waiting list for nursery schools in Tokyo fell to less than 1,000 for the first time since 1970 when such statistics were first recorded.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government says that 969 children were waiting to be enrolled in childcare facilities as of April 1 this year.

The number is 1,374 less than a year ago.

The largest number was 8,672 that was recorded in 2014.

Officials say that 26 of 62 municipalities in Tokyo have no children waiting, an increase of eight municipalities from last year.

While 36 municipalities still have children waiting for available spots in childcare facilities, 34 of them had fewer children waiting than last year.

The officials say that capacity of nursery schools increased by about 10,000 during the past year which helped reduce the number of waiting children.