A requirement that students spend a certain number of minutes on homework each day may be eliminated, according to a policy change under discussion.
The district’s Homework Committee recently sent a letter to parents outlining the proposed change and soliciting feedback (a PDF file version of that letter is attached). The committee—which consists of parents, teachers, administrators, and school board members—will meet June 14 to further discuss the plan and will present an update to the school board at its meeting that night.
“Right now, our policy requires a set number of minutes of homework per grade level,” says Supt. Jill Vinson. “Ideally, we would change that requirement to be a baseline of zero minutes, where each teacher may build on that with meaningful activities as necessary and appropriate to the grade level. We are simply hoping to get away from the concept of rote nightly homework based upon a required number of minutes.” The letter to parents states that, “This change would make homework the exception, rather than the rule.”
The letter also stated that parents expressed concern about too much homework and stress during the current school year; citing studies that didn’t show any benefits of homework when it comes to academic achievement as well as the documentary Road to Nowhere, which examined the pressures students face at school. Cardiff parents who want regular homework would be provided with age-appropriate assignments.
Vinson says the homework committee would draft a revision to the current homework policy and bring it to the August school board meeting for approval. Teachers would discuss how to implement the policy again in August and it would be shared with parents at the start of the school year. Teachers could discuss their ideas for home activities and assignments at Back-to-School Night.