“Our new motto for assignments is ‘review and preview.” That means that homework in the district now constitutes an ungraded review or preview of current course work that’s the students’ responsibility to independently complete.
Spelling words, vocabulary practice, and study guides for testing all fall under this purview.
Teachers who do assign it need to have a very compelling reason for extending a student’s school day.
“My general suggestion is to change the default: No homework should be the norm,” Kohn says, “Six hours of academics is enough—except on those occasions when teachers can show strong reason to infringe on family time and make these particular students do more of this particular schoolwork.” Still, homework is so ingrained in the fabric of schooling that studies revealing its minimal positive benefits have been largely shrugged off or ignored altogether.
The Great Homework Debate Some educators aren’t fans of the new policy.
Tammy Linder, a sixth grade teacher at Allardt Elementary School, is one of them.
At the start of the 2013-14 school year, the Fentress County School District in Tennessee announced that it would enforce a district-wide ban on graded homework assignments.
Administrators explained their decision by pointing to the large majority of students who lacked at-home resources to help them with their homework.
For most educators, completely cutting homework out of schools isn’t a viable alternative – at least not yet.
And many, if not most, teachers are unconvinced that gutting homework from their repertoire of learning tools is the best idea anyway.