School board eliminates summer homework

Krishna Gopal, News Editor

During a Board of Education meeting held January 13, the Elmbrook School Board modified their homework policy to eliminate all summer homework.

Kathryn Wilson, the Board’s Teaching and Learning Committee Chair, explained that the Committee observed the type and amount of summer homework to be inconsistent. Wilson was mainly concerned that an excessive amount of pre-course work would discourage students from enrolling in courses that could have otherwise benefited them. She was also worried that students who were willing to take the time to complete the work would be strained by the overburden. Additionally, Wilson mentioned that due to scheduling changes, while some students were able to complete their pre-course work over the summer, others were forced to spend their winter break completing the work.

In the past, teachers and administrators, along with the Board, have attempted to regulate the pre-course work. However, their efforts had never been completely successful. “In the end, we decided it is our responsibility as a school system to design and implement courses that can be delivered within the confines of the school year,” Wilson said.

While considering how the change in policy will affect teachers, English teacher Mr. Patrick Perez said, “It ties our hands.” He believes that this policy eliminates another option for teachers in what they can accomplish. Perez teaches AP Literature and Composition, a course that requires students to read an extensive selection of books. In the past, he had asked incoming students to read several works and take part in an online discussion of the readings prior to the start of the course. Perez contends that while the block schedule may increase daily class length, it cannot increase the speed at which students are able read books.

Regardless, students will no longer be asked to complete any pre-course assignments starting this coming summer.