After being petitioned by fifth-graders, a New York school district is considering eliminating homework for students.
Farley Elementary School students Christopher DeLeon and Niko Keelie initiated the petition, which is representative of a larger nationwide trend.
“I got stressed by homework a lot, so I just — it took me a minute of thinking — I want to get rid of homework,” said Keelie.
Posing a solution to their problem, Keelie and DeLeon wrote a petition and presented it to the Haverstraw-Stony Point Central School District. Not only did most of the fifth-graders’ classmates support the petition, the school district agreed with the boys’ argument.
According to NBC New York, the district was already deliberating a change in their homework policy, which could include allowing parents to request homework for their children.
“It’s really not about banning homework or no homework — it’s about rethinking it, and how can we do it different to better the needs of our students,” said Assistant Superintendent Kris Felicello.
Taking a cue from studies that have found that elementary school students do not benefit from homework, school districts across the country are considering the elimination of homework or a drastic reduction in at-home assignments.
“If you go home and you do homework, you’re just thinking about that, and then you stutter and stuff,” said DeLeon. “But if you don’t, then you’re relaxed and calm, and if you take a test more calmly, you get a better grade ’cause you’re not thinking about other stuff.”
The proposed relaxed policy has its critics, including parents who question how their children will learn if they do not do homework, and what will they do after school?
Felicello suggested, “I hope that kids would go home and they would read and they would discover things that they’re interested in doing, and go on YouTube and figure out how to play the ukulele, or go and research what’s going on with Space X, or talk to their friends or get outside and play.”
The New York school district hopes to implement their new homework policy beginning in the fall.