A popular topic among parents during any school year is the homework load and the frustration of countless hours children spend on assignment after assignment.
As parents, we have all been down this road from time to time.
“I think kids get too much homework,” said Erika Johnson, who has two children in Tracy area schools and a third who graduated from high school in June. “There is also the weight of the books to consider. I feel bad for kids these days, and the adults that are put in place to inspire and assist do not.”
Paul Hall, the director of student services and curriculum for Tracy Unified School District, said the right amount of homework may be different for each child.
“Sometimes homework can be an individual kind of thing,” Hall said. “If the student is not engaged, then it could take a longer time, because it becomes a laborious task instead of something they enjoy or that piques their interest. I think it’s also important to ask your child if they understand their assignment, as this can have a major effect on homework time.”
According to the district, a board policy and administrative regulation, No. 6154, is set in place for homework levels. A detailed description can be found on the district website, www.tracy.k12.ca.us, but a summary follows:
• 30 minutes of homework each day for primary grades, kindergarten to third grade
• One hour per day for fourth and fifth grades
• 90 minutes per day for sixth to eighth grades
• 10 hours or more per week for high school, ninth to 12th grades
• In Gifted and Talented Education and similar programs, more homework will be assigned.
“I am not against homework as an enrichment tool; however, I am strongly against my students bringing several hours of school work home during the week, plus weekends, and over vacation as well,” Jessica Benotti-Reddoch, mother of a local high school student, wrote in a comment on the Tracy Talks Facebook page. “Students deserve time for family, friends, Scouts, sports, music, acting ... in addition to their education.”
Parents have some possible recourse if they think a child is being assigned too much homework. The district recommends first having a meeting with the child’s teacher. If the issue does not get resolved, next try meeting with both the principal and the teacher together.
What do you think?
• Anne Marie Fuller, a Tracy arts commissioner, Mrs. California BOTN and National Mrs. BOTN., is also the host of “Helpful Hints with Anne Marie” on Channel 26 at 7 p.m. Fridays. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.