'No Homework' Debate Finds Support in New Jersey

Board members in the Galloway Township Public School District (NJ) will consider aboloshing weekend homework while parents in Maplewood, NJ are organizing a movement to abolish homework altogether.  Do you support putting the issue of homework on the national policy agenda? Join us in taking the first step of discussing with your friends: the nature of the work our children are expected to do in what has become a "second shift"; what opportunities are lost to homework; the impact homework has on your child's health, rest, and well-being; the impact it has on their love of learning and sense of curiosity; and the impact it has on your life as a family. Sharing our stories helps us see we are not alone and allows us to take the next step of organizing with each other to change the structure of the system. A possible framework for the discussion - Given the research shows homework in the elementary years is counter-productive, let's advocate for its elimination.  For high school students,  how about limiting school-related activities to 40 hours a week (including the school day and homework)? Rather than starting with the presumption of a set amount of time each night, why not start by asking whether the assignment will foster engagement, learning and health? In some communities it will also be important to strengthen after-school options available. Why not experiment in your school community? If the results are positive, they are likely to spread. If not, it will hardly be devastating. Ask doctors to share how heavy backpacks and the "second shift" are impacting children's health.  Support our efforts to organize doctors by asking them to contact us if they are interested in participating in a health-based campaign for change. You can also help shape the End The Race campaign by participating in the crowd-sourcing survey.