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Homework Philosophy



Dear Green Mountaineers and Families,


Perhaps it is the time of year to dive head-first into the stormy waters of homework! Reading the local papers recently, the topic is making headlines and stirring debate;


“South Burlington school subtracts homework” Burlington Free Press, September 9th

“Homework is banned at this Massachusetts school” Boston.com, September 6th

The letter that went viral on the internet;




I see two sides to the whole homework debate. For example;


For Homework

Against Homework

  • Homework allows students to practice responsibility. Two of the habits of mind are self-direction and responsible and involved citizenship. Homework is an opportunity to practice these.


  • Middle school and high school certainly will assign homework, and so by giving it in younger grades they can start to form habits that will make transitions to the older grades easier.


  • To achieve certain goals in life, practice is needed. If you don't practice your band instrument, the piece of music will never be played. If you don’t exercise frequently, your fitness level will never be where you would like it to be. So too with reading and math fluency! The more you practice these skills, the stronger you will become.

  • There is no compelling data that shows homework in elementary school leads to increased academic performance.


  • Homework is a stress on families. As a parent myself, I know how hectic the typical American family’s life is; between trying to pay the bills, take kids to extracurricular activities, maintain the house... I know the additional, conflict and stress that homework assignments can cause.  In addition, after a long day at work I would rather have quality family time rather than nag and hassle. Talking over dinner, reading a book as a family, going for a walk are surely more beneficial than a grammar worksheet.

  • Homework tends to lack equity. Not all students have the same level of support with homework, resources to do homework, and environment to do homework in. As such, grading homework as part of a grade has never sat well with me.  With the new report card there is no room for this anyway, as we are measuring observed work against Common Core expectations.




As such a compromise position is offered on a weekly basis!


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