A few months back, we shared a viral post about a 2nd grade teacher from Texas named Brandy Young, who gave her students’ parents a letter at Meet the Teacher night announcing a no homework policy. In this letter, which gained more than 70,000 shares on Facebook alone in the first week it went viral, Mrs. Young says,
“Research has been unable to prove that homework improves student performance. Rather, I ask that you spend your evenings doing things that are proven to correlate with student success. Eat dinner as a family, read together, play outside, and get your child to bed early.”
Many schools across the country have since taken notice and enacted major changes to the school day structure to reduce homework time, or in some cases eliminate it altogether. For example, earlier this year Kelly Elementary School in Holyoke, Massachusetts announced it would ban homework for the entire year. This particular school, as well as most of the other schools in the Holyoke (MA) school district, opted instead for a longer school day, moving from the old 9 am to 3 pm schedule to an extended 8 am to 4 pm schedule beginning with the 2016-17 school year.
Is there a move to ban homework?
And is the homework being assigned to our students having any real lasting benefit? Many experts, including educational research expert Harris Cooper of Duke University, believe that the benefits of homework are minimal, and age-dependent, with high school students benefiting most. Based on multiple studies compiled by Cooper over a period of nearly 20 years, homework may also have a negative impact on young students’ attitudes toward school. Cooper advocates instead for more reading at home for elementary students, and a maximum of 2 hours of homework per night for high school students.
Do you need help with homework?
If homework is overwhelming your children, Club Z! can help. We offer one-on-one, in-home or online tutoring programs to help make homework manageable, and keep kids engaged in learning. For more information, call 800-434-2582 or fill out our contact form on our web site.