Ridgewood High School in New Jersey introduced a homework-free winter break in December. Schools in Tampa, Fla., and Bleckley County, Ga., have instituted “no homework nights” throughout the year. The two-year-old Brooklyn School of Inquiry, a program for gifted and talented elementary students, has made homework optional: it is neither graded nor counted toward progress reports.
“I think people confuse homework with rigor,” said Donna Taylor, the Brooklyn School’s principal, who views homework for children under 11 as primarily benefiting parents by helping them feel connected to the classroom.
The homework revolution has also spread north to Toronto, which in 2008 banned homework for kindergartners and for older children on school holidays, and to the Philippines, where the education department issued a memorandum in September calling on teachers to refrain from giving weekend assignments “for pupils to enjoy their childhood.”