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San Mateo Un HSD |  BP  6154  Instruction

Homework/Makeup Work   

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Purpose of Homework

The Board of Trustees recognizes that homework contributes toward building responsibility, self-discipline, lifelong learning habits, and that time spent on homework directly influences students' ability to meet the District's academic standards. The rationale supporting the District's homework policy and regulation is based on the following:

* Equity and access

* Student health and wellness

* School/life balance

* Quality of instructional practices over quantity of assignments

Definition of Homework

The definition of homework encompasses any task assigned by a student's teachers solely intended to be completed during non-school hours and does not include work pursued during tutorial periods, flex time, office hours, etc. For assignments in which students work on during school and non-school time, only the non-school work is considered homework. Homework does not include extracurricular activities.

Homework Application

Homework is a tool to enhance student achievement and gain mastery over subject matter. Homework is part of an overall instructional strategy employed to accomplish the ultimate summative performance goals of the particular course. Typically, homework provides students with an opportunity to practice, reinforce, and apply previously taught skills and prepare for new material that is immediately reviewed in class. Homework intended to prepare students for future lessons shall be clearly defined for that purpose and have a limited objective and reasonable timeframe.

The following are requirements or guiding principles for homework:

* Homework assignments shall emphasize quality over quantity.

* Homework must have a clear academic purpose, such as checking for understanding or applying knowledge and skills.

* Homework is a relevant extension of classroom instruction and learning.

* Homework assignments shall be based on individual student needs including, but not limited to, specific IEPs and 504 plans.

* Homework assignments of different types are recommended.

Homework shall be structured around content with which:

* The student has some familiarity and context,

* The student has been exposed to in prior coursework, or

* The student is not familiar with but is reasonably prepared to comprehend (such as an introduction to new content in preparation for future lessons).

Homework Free Breaks

Effective homework practices do not place an undue burden on students in regards to the amount and difficulty of homework. The Board of Trustees recognizes the value of extracurricular activities, family time, hobbies, unstructured time, adequate sleep, and their importance in a student's life. The Board of Trustees realizes that too much homework negatively impacts these valuable activities and competes with other responsibilities that students may have. As part of a balance approach to homework, specific homework free breaks, as detailed in the accompanying administrative regulation, are required. The intent of homework free breaks is to provide students time to develop personal interests, engage in other pursuits beyond their academic load, and take part in family activities.

(cf. 5020 - Parent Rights and Responsibilities)

(cf. 6011 - Academic Standards)

(cf. 6020 - Parent Involvement)

(cf. 1240 - Volunteer Assistance)

(cf. 1700 - Relations between Private Industry and the Schools)

(cf. 3541 - Transportation Routes and Services)

(cf. 5148 - Child Care and Development)

(cf. 6112 - School Day)

(cf. 6142.4 - Service Learning/Community Service Classes)

Legal Reference:


48205 Absences for personal reasons

48913 Completion of work missed by suspended student

48980 Parental notifications

58700-58702 Tutoring and homework assistance program; summer school apportionment credit

Management Resources:


Parent Involvement in the Education of Their Children, 1994

Policy Statement on Homework, 1995


adopted: June 21, 2018 San Mateo, California