HCPS revises regulation, policy on homework for first time in 28 years

Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 11:33 AM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - For the first time since 1995, Harrisonburg City Public Schools has updated its policy on homework.

At a school board meeting on Nov. 9, members voted unanimously to adopt changes to the policy’s language including a regulation with suggested time limits for assignments.

“There’s not a huge positive impact between the amount of homework students are completing and academic achievement. Looking at the research it talks about focusing on fluency with reading or with math facts,” HCPS Chief Academic Officer Joy Blosser said.

Blosser added that after looking over research and referencing language from the Virginia School Boards Association, the updates reflect changes over the last decade in the intent and effectiveness of homework.

Some redundant language was removed from the policy entirely or moved to regulation while keeping guidelines on school-life balance.

“Making sure that if students were having homework that they had had the concept or skill introduced and practiced at school before they were taking it home for homework. As well as making sure there wasn’t too much homework, and that students weren’t spending hours upon hours completing homework at home,” Blosser said.

Blosser said although the policy was officially changed earlier this month, HCPS has been operating under the revised guidelines for the last several years.