San Ramon Valley Unified School District Homework Policy

The Board adopted this homework policy for grades K-8 on June 24, 2008 with the expectation that all K-8 sites fully implement the policy for the 2008-09 school year. High schools will be expected to fully implement by the beginning of the 2009-10 school year.

AR 6154

Homework/Makeup Work

Homework is an integral component of education that deepens student learning and understanding. K-12 students will participate in homework that is meaningful, purposeful, and appropriate.

Homework For All Grades Levels

1. The Grade Level Guidelines of this policy are based on the needs of the average student. The amount of homework assigned to students should be different in elementary, middle, and high school. The amount of time a student spends on assigned homework depends on factors such as the student’s needs, learning ability, subject, school schedule, testing schedule and assigned homework due dates. Time spent on homework should be balanced with the importance of personal and family well-being, and the wide array of family obligations experienced in our society today.

2. Parents and teachers should make students aware that learning occurs at home, school, and in the world around them.

3. Homework should be the result of collaborative efforts, thoughtfully considered, and coordinated to improve student learning.

4. Homework should be purposeful and meaningful to students. Legitimate purposes for homework include practicing a skill or process that students can do independently but not fluently, elaborating on information that has been addressed in class to deepen students’ knowledge, and providing opportunities for students to explore topics of their own interest.

5. Reading is an integral part of learning and is a consistent part of homework.

6. Homework will reflect the accommodations and modifications of curriculum that is stated in a student’s IEP or 504 plan.

7. Assigning homework over holidays is highly discouraged.

8. Homework is defined as any work assigned to be completed outside of class.

Grade Level Guidelines

Elementary School

1. Reading is an integral part of learning. These guidelines include 15-20 minutes of reading per night:

K-1 15-30 minutes of homework per night (reading included)

2-3 30-45 minutes of homework per night (reading included)

4-5 45-60 minutes of homework per night (reading included)

2. In the primary grades (K-3), homework consists primarily of reading and a limited number of independent exercises to reinforce previously taught basic skills.

3. Except for reading, homework at the elementary level should not be assigned over weekends, holidays, or extended school breaks.

4. At the upper grades (4-5), homework consists of completing, practicing, preparing, or extending core academic skills and is designed to build independent study habits.

5. Long term assignments should be limited in number and duration. Project based assignments should primarily be undertaken and completed in the classroom. Some portions of projects may be assigned as homework; however, these tasks should not require group participation, significant assistance from parents or costly materials. These assignments should include clear check points to monitor progress toward completion.

* Please refer to the Homework For All Grade Levels section

Middle School

1. As a guideline, homework should be assigned during the school week on a regular basis. Total homework assignments should have an estimated completion time of 1 hour and 45 minutes per night, including reading. Advanced Math and electives may require additional time.

2. In order to coordinate due dates and balance the workload, teachers should meet on a regular basis to collaborate and be aware of homework, projects, assignments, and testing schedules in all curricular areas.

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

4. When assigning group projects, teachers should allow in-class collaboration time with specific tasks to be completed independently; however, these tasks should not require significant assistance from parents, or costly materials.

5. Though weekend homework is discouraged, students should be encouraged to use this time for review, voluntary work, projects, or completion of makeup assignments.

* Please refer to the Homework For All Grade Levels section

High School

1. As a guideline, total homework assignments should have an estimated completion time of 3 hours or less of on task work per night, including reading. Long term projects should be included in this time frame.

2. Some elective classes such as, but not limited to drama, speech and debate, music, and athletics, will require additional time.

3. Though communication within a high school setting is challenging due to larger numbers of students, staff, and course offerings, staff should make efforts whenever possible to be aware of homework, projects, and testing schedules across the curriculum.

4. Long term assignments should have clear check points.

5. If weekend homework is deemed necessary, the amount should not exceed a regular day’s assignment. Students may choose to use weekends for review, voluntary work, projects, or completion of make up assignments.

6. AP, Honors, and Advanced courses are higher level classes and will require more extensive homework.

7. The homework needs of Del Amigo and Venture will be site based due to the unique nature of their respective programs.

* Please refer to the Homework For All Grade Levels section

School-Site Homework Plan

The principal and staff at each school shall develop and regularly review a school-site homework plan which includes guidelines for the assignment of homework and describes the responsibilities of students, staff and parents/guardians. The plan shall identify all of the following:

1. For each grade level, the amount of time that students shall be expected to spend on homework

2. For each grade level, the extent to which homework assignments shall systematically involve participation by parents/guardians

3. The means by which parents/guardians shall be informed about:

a. Homework expectations

b. How homework relates to the student's grades

c. How best to help their children

4. Techniques that will be taught to help students allocate their time wisely, meet their deadlines and develop good personal study habits

5. Clearly communicate what additional resources are available to students to assist them in completing homework assignments.

6. The means by which teachers shall coordinate assignments so that students do not receive an overload of homework one day and very little the next

7. For each grade level, the extent to which homework assignments shall emphasize independent research, reports, special reading and problem-solving activities

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. 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)

Responsibilities

Students are responsible for:

1. ensuring understanding of the homework and asking for clarification or help when needed

2. regularly completing assigned homework in a timely manner

3. managing time by staying focused, on task, and planning effectively for long term projects

4. bringing home all necessary materials

5. putting forth their best effort to produce quality work

6. completing or making up assignments and tests when suspended from school if required by the teacher. (Ed Code 48913) (cf.5144.1 – Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)

Parents/Guardians are responsible for:

1. being an advocate for their child, while encouraging the child to advocate for himself/herself

2. encouraging reading at all grade levels

3. providing an appropriate environment for homework to be done

4. providing a healthy balance between homework, extra and co-curricular activities, and family commitments

5. contacting the teacher if their child is not consistently able to do the homework by himself/herself within the time guidelines, or if challenges or questions arise

Teachers are responsible for:

1. sharing expectations for homework with students and parents early in the school year

2. encouraging a partnership between family and students that promotes timely communication and supports families in the homework process

3. designing homework assignments that clearly articulate their purpose and expected outcome, allowing for student questions and planning

4. providing timely feedback to students

5. ensuring any homework assigned is directly related to the classroom instruction and consists of clear, purposeful, and engaging activities

6. assigning homework that is appropriate and differentiated as needed

7. teaching the skills necessary for the students to complete the homework and become successful independent learners

8. articulation and planning with all curricular areas

9. providing makeup work for suspended students

Principals are responsible for:

1. implementing district policy

2. developing and implementing a school site homework plan

3. supporting professional dialogue

4. promoting teacher collaboration

5. monitoring homework quality and quantity

6. communicating homework expectations with parents

7. facilitating interventions and support programs

8. ensuring that all students have the opportunity to complete quality homework

Regulation Approved: June 24, 2008

Revised: December 9, 2008

SAN RAMON VALLEY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

Danville, CA