New York's Elite Private Schools Are Cutting Back On Homework

studying girl

Photo: English106 via Flickr

Amid complaints that high school students were drowning under loads of homework, several of New York City’s elite private schools have cut back on assignments and eased up on test schedules, the New York Times‘ Jenny Anderson reports.The vaunted Dalton school sent parents a letter this summer saying tests and papers would be staggered and that midterms would be pushed back two weeks so students wouldn’t have to study over winter break. And Trinity School has launched a task force to study students’ work loads, according to the NYT.

While not all schools have lightened the load, those that have are looking at research on the effects of stress and overscheduling on teen health.

According to the NYT:

Denise Pope, a senior lecturer at the Stanford School of Education, co-authored a 2007 paper that looked at 496 students at one private and one public school and found that those with more than 3.5 hours of homework a night had an increased risk of physical and mental health issues, like sleep deprivation, ulcers and headaches. In a separate study of 26 schools, Ms. Pope said, 67 per cent of more than 10,000 students reported that they were “often” or “always” stressed out.

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