Push for no homework sparks debate - WNEM TV 5

Push for no homework sparks debate

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It’s a subject of debate across the country, is homework beneficial for young students?

Some say it's not, while other parents say that's totally out of the equation.

“Homework that has an appropriate use that extends learning is very important in a school,” Freeland Schools Superintendent Matt Cairy said.

Cairy believes in having students doing homework, as long as the assignments are useful.

“Homework should be used as an extension of learning,” Cairy said. “And an opportunity for a student to take what they’ve learned in school and practice it at home with their parents and when it’s used like that it’s very appropriate.”

Homework is in the news after a CBS Special Report highlighted a New York City school district that banned mandatory homework for kindergarten through fourth grade. Some parents there say their children weren’t responding well to the additional workload.

But Dr. Harris Cooper, a professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University, said there are benefits to younger students doing homework in moderation. He believes getting rid of it all together would be a bad idea.

“Studies show even small amounts of homework help kids do better on unity tests,” Cooper said. “But they also help to shape a child’s time management skills, their organization.”

For his part, Cairy said he has no plans on taking homework out of the curriculum.

“There’s very little that’s as important as a student’s learning,” Cairy said. “And anytime we have the opportunity to extend the learning past the school day I think schools should take that opportunity.”

For kindergarteners experts suggest occasional short, fun tasks parents and children can do together.

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