Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Thursday, October 18, 2012

France to abolish school homework

The Wash. Post reports:
French President Fran├žois Hollande has said he will end homework as part of a series of reforms to overhaul the country’s education system.

And the reason he wants to ban homework?

He doesn’t think it is fair that some kids get help from their parents at home while children who come from disadvantaged families don’t. It’s an issue that goes well beyond France, and has been part of the reason that some Americans oppose homework too. ...

Whether Hollande really gets all of this done is open to question. But his homework position is not original; some school districts in the United States did the same thing going back more than a century. Early in the 1900s, the influential Ladies’ Home Journal magazine called homework “barbarous,” and school districts such as Los Angeles abolished it in kindergarten through eighth grade. In fact, some educators said it caused tuberculosis, nervous conditions and heart disease in the young and that children were better off playing outside. The American Child Health Association in the 1930s labeled homework and child labor as leading killers of children who contracted tuberculosis and heart disease.
I would guess that homework helps kids from disadvantaged backgrounds more. The privileged kids do not need it.

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