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Moraga ESD |  AR  6154  Instruction

Homework/Makeup Work   

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The principal, staff, and parents at each school shall regularly review the homework policy, which includes regulations for the assignment of homework and describes the responsibilities of, teachers, parents/guardians and administration.

Homework should have a positive impact on student learning and is defined as the assigned learning activities that students work on outside of the classroom. The purpose of homework is to provide students an opportunity to practice, reinforce and apply previously taught skills and acquired knowledge and prepare for future lessons, and is directly tied to classroom instruction. Assignments should have a clear purpose and be designed for completion within a reasonable time frame. Completing homework is the responsibility of the student. Parents can play a supportive role through monitoring, encouraging students' efforts and providing a conducive learning environment.

Homework should be designed to:

* Deepen understanding and encourage a love of learning.

* Consider individual student needs, learning styles, abilities, and social-emotional health in order for students to complete their homework.

* Include clear instructions and performance expectations so students can complete the work independently.

* Be assigned in reasonable amounts so that work can be completed within a reasonable time frame.

* Provide teachers with feedback to inform instruction.

* Provide students with timely feedback regarding their learning.

Weekend homework is discouraged, however, the average cumulative amount of work required over the weekend should not exceed any one regular day's assignment in expectation or duration.

Students may choose to use weekends for review, voluntary work, or completion of make-up assignments.

Project-based assignments may be assigned as homework; however, these tasks should not require face-to-face group meetings outside of class, significant assistance from parents, or costly materials.

Whether or not homework is assigned, students are encouraged to read daily.

Extended breaks from school, defined as four or more consecutive school days, are intended to be a time that is free from schoolwork for students. There should be no expectations on the part of students that schoolwork is done over this period. No assignments should be given over extended breaks, and any long-term assignments given before an extended break should not be due during the first week back from the break.

Homework will not be assigned before or during the review days at the intermediate school which precede semester finals.

Besides extended breaks, any homework given over school holidays should not exceed the homework given on a typical evening.

Students may choose, as a time management strategy, to allocate break time to work on assignments and projects. This should not be seen as the teacher assigning homework, but as the student employing a valid time management technique.

Homework grading practices should encourage learning and use positive motivation to promote completion of the homework. Teachers should employ homework grading practices for late homework which take into consideration student responsibility, and circumstances affecting a student's ability to complete the work on time, and which may warrant an extension or excusal.

Homework for Elementary Grades

1. In the primary grades (K-3), homework should consist primarily of math and reading and a limited number of independent exercises to reinforce previously taught skills and concepts.

2. At the upper grades (4-5), homework should primarily consist of math and reading, and the practice and application of key skills and concepts, application of writing skills, and beginning research. At this level, homework should be designed to build independent study habits and not include the learning of new concepts not previously introduced in class.

3. Long-term assignments at the upper grades should be limited in number and duration. These assignments should include clear checkpoints to monitor progress towards completion.

4. Homework for students participating in intervention programs should be balanced with classroom work assigned for homework.

5. As a guideline, when teachers choose to assign homework, students might reasonably be expected to devote the following amounts of undistracted, focused time to nightly homework, including time devoted to long-term projects and reading.

TK/K Occasional reading

Grade 1 10 minutes M-Th

Grade 2 20 minutes M-Th

Grade 3 30 minutes M-Th

Grade 4 40 minutes M-Th

Grade 5 50 minutes M-Th

Homework for Middle School Grades

1. At the middle school grades, homework should primarily consist of math, reading, science, and social studies, and the application of writing skills, practice and application of key core subject skills and concepts, preparation for future classes and beginning research. At this level, homework should continue to build independent study habits.

2. Long-term assignments at the middle grades should be limited in number and duration. These assignments should include clear checkpoints to monitor progress towards completion.

3. With support of administration and staff, teachers should make efforts to coordinate with one another to establish deadlines, due dates for projects/assignments, and follow school established testing schedules in an effort to minimize student over-extension.

4. As a guideline, when teachers choose to assign homework, students might reasonably be expected to devote the following amounts of undistracted, focused time to nightly homework, including time devoted to long-term projects and test review:

6 30-60 minutes average M-F

7 30-70 minutes average M-F

8 30-80 minutes average M-F

Homework Suggestions for Teachers

In assigning homework, teachers should:

1. Clearly explain objectives, timelines, suggested amount of time for completing the homework, and required materials associated with the assignment.

2. Post assignments in a manner that is clear, consistent and easily observed by the student both in and outside of the classroom. The use of online communication tools is strongly encouraged at the secondary level.

3. Encourage students to monitor their own assignments.

4. Monitor homework time requirements and feasibility of assignments using student assignments, student feedback, and parent feedback.

5. Differentiate homework when it is determined that, despite appropriate effort and learning habits, a student is spending more than the expected time on homework.

6. Clearly communicate to parents and students the expectations regarding the amount and quality of homework required by the student and the level of parental involvement to complete assignments.

7. Inform parents and students of opportunities for student assistance.

8. Suggest and practice techniques to help increase efficiency, such as how to allocate time wisely, meet deadlines, and develop good study habits for each subject area. Examples of this may include the use of a binder reminder or computer based tools as communication avenues between home and school.

9. Provide a process for student or parent feedback if there is a concern.

10. Work with grade and department level colleagues to maintain reasonable total time requirements per week.

Homework Guidelines for Parents

1. Provide a favorable study environment at home which includes a desk or table at which one could comfortably work, proper lighting, minimum distractions and a regular time when the child can work quietly without interruptions

2. Provide a healthy balance between homework, extra and co-curricular activities, and family commitments

3. Encourage student responsibility and independence

4. Contact the teacher if a child is not consistently able to do the homework within the time guidelines, or if challenges or questions arise

Guidelines for Site Administration

1. Provide professional development on homework, including overview of the policy, effective strategies and practices, and time for collaboration with grade level teams or departments to plan, as needed. Be responsible for ensuring compliance with the homework policy, including the use of feedback processes to support its implementation

2. Have on-going discussions with staff regarding effective homework strategies and practices.

3. Coordinate school-wide resources and practices that support homework completion, e.g. use of planners, library facilities and academic support programs.

4. Ensure this policy is easily accessed, and translated as needed, on the school's website or upon request.

5. Provide information to parents on the purpose of effective homework and sharing practices that will help families support their children (for example: newsletters, open houses, and websites).

Makeup Work

The Superintendent or designee shall notify parents/guardians that no student may have his/her grade reduced or lose academic credit for any excused absence when missed assignments and tests are satisfactorily completed within a reasonable period of time. In general, a guideline of at least two days or more to make-up work per each day absent is recommended.

Such notification shall include the full text of Education Code 48205. (Education Code 48980)

(cf. 5121 - Grades/Evaluation of Student Achievement)

(cf. 5145.6 - Parental Notifications)


approved: October 14, 2014 Moraga, California

revised: June 6, 2017