Students should have freedom: Schools assign too much homework

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Clara Moss, Staff Writer and Social Media Team

Take a look at Finland, where the test scores are highest, they have a high school graduation rate of ninety three percent, and two out of three graduates go to college. To achieve this, Finland schools only have one standardized test, there are about seventy five minutes for recess, their teachers are phenomenal, but most importantly – they assign less homework. Finland tops the United States in test scores and graduation rates, and homework is a key component of that. 

Childhood is meant to be enjoyed, but homework makes that impossible. From the time students are in kindergarten, they are given an excessive amount of work to complete. Instead of spending their time on work, students children should be with their family, their friends, or playing their favorite sport. 

Kalamazoo Public Schools homework policy increases at least ten minutes every grade, until high school when students are expected to have an hour and a half to two hours of work, with additional work for advanced classes and during exam times. From the time students are in kindergarten, they’re expected to read for at least twenty minutes per day. This amount of reading increases to half an hour after second grade, which adds on to the already massive amount of work for students.

Instead of being given an hour or more of homework every day, students should have a smaller amount of homework, fewer days a week. This way, students have time to be with their family, friends, participate in sports, and experience other clubs or extracurriculars. Students are expected to have a sport and several clubs on their college application, along with good grades and high SAT scores. But how can students achieve that when they have more homework than they have time for?

The amount of homework students have now leads to stress, imbalance in their lives, and even lower test scores. In a study from the Journal of Educational Psychology journal, it was found that students who do more than 100 minutes of homework per night have lower test scores. Homework isn’t worth sacrificing student’s test score.

Some teachers argue that homework is important to make sure students know material and work independently to complete responsibilities. By having work to complete at home, students will learn about responsibility, time management, and the lesson of procrastination. Homework also works to reinforce students’ learning of the subject and the concepts taught in class. However, these teachers don’t experience the amount of homework teenagers today have and are unaware of the stress and mental problems the work causes. 

A statistic from Nationwide Children’s Hospital states that although teenagers need 9 hours of sleep, they really get seven hours on average. Homework not only affects test scores, it also harms student’s health.

“I usually spend a good five hours doing my homework,” sophomore Jaxson Irons said. “I usually pull off two all-nighters a week, sometimes three or four,” Irons said of how homework affects his sleep schedule. 

Homework is entirely detrimental for students and their health.