In search of the benefit of homework

The debate about homework is growing heated in education circles. With more and more demands being placed on teachers, students, and educational leaders, homework can provide valuable practice time for students, TeachThought.com reports. It can also be a time of torture where families lose their precious little time to conflict and stress, as the battle of “I don’t want to do my homework” ensues. It’s important to impress upon students the value of getting the work done, but sometimes homework demands are unrealistic, bringing up the question “Is homework productive?” It has been argued that homework unfairly punishes students who do not have family members available to help them, giving the long-term edge to students with parents who do…

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At elite schools, easing up a bit on homework

It was the kind of memo that high school students would dream of getting, if they dreamed in memos, the New York Times reports. Lisa Waller, director of the high school at Dalton, a famously rigorous private school on the Upper East Side, sent a letter to parents this summer announcing that tests and papers would be staggered to make sure students did not become overloaded. January midterms would be pushed back two weeks so students would not have to study during vacation. Across town at the Trinity School, another of Manhattan’s elite academies, the administration has formed a task force to examine workload, and the upper school, grades 9 to 12, has been trying ways to coordinate test-taking with papers, labs and other projects…

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Los Angeles school district suspends homework limit policy

A new policy that caps homework as a percentage of a student’s overall grade has been suspended, the Huffington Post reports. Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy announced Wednesday that the policy, which limited homework’s weight to 10 percent of a student’s grade, was enacted without enough public input. The policy went into effect July 1…

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School’s out as districts weigh lightening homework loads

School districts from coast to coast are weighing the elimination of homework on weekends and holidays, part of a move by educators to rein in student workloads, Reuters reports. Officials at public schools in Galloway Township, New Jersey, this week proposed no more homework on weekends and holidays for their 3,500 students, and the Pleasanton Unified School District in northern California suggested drastic changes to homework policy for the 14,500-student district…

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