Education

Good Idea? NJ School District May Ban Weekend Homework

| by Mark Berman Opposing Views

Schoolkids at one township in New Jersey could soon be the envy of every student in the nation -- the district might ban homework on weekends and holidays.

According to a report in the Press of Atlantic City, the Galloway Township Public School District is considering changing its homework policy. One change calls for homework to be assigned from only Monday-Thursday, not on the weekends or over holiday breaks. 

The plan was devised by by schools Superintendent Annette Giaquinto, and district officials Betty Napoli and Michael Hinman.

"When the three of us started on this, there was a rumor that we were abolishing homework. That is not the case," Giaquinto said. "We want to make sure the homework we are sending home is meaningful."

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The plan was presented to the Board of Education last week. Some board members were not enthusiastic. One of them, Beverly Evensen, said it makes no sense because parents likely have more time to help kids with their homework over the weekend than during the work week.

Napoli countered by saying parents can still work with their children on long-term school projects on the weekend.

Another change would be how much homework a teacher can assign. The trio came up with a formula -- 10 minutes multiplied by the grade level. So a fifth grader couldn't get more than 50 minutes of homework, for example.

Besides giving kids an opportunity to "turn off school for awhile," this would ensure that students are not assigned nonsense homework, such as getting 25 math problems when five would show whether the students understand the material.