Getting students ready for GCSE, further study and the world beyond school is vital and being able to organise themselves to complete review work, or homework, is an important part of that. However, we believe that homework should be:
Meaningful (not setting tasks for the sake of it, and in a way where the students can see the value)
Manageable (in terms of both amounts for students but also staff workload)
We do not have a ‘homework’ timetable but expect most subjects to set review work roughly every two weeks. So unless they have a specific piece of homework, or family activity planned, students should aim to do a consistent, set amount of ‘review’ work, rather than ‘homework,’ five nights a week relative to their age during term time. This works out as 20 minutes for Year 7, 30 minutes for Year 8, 40 minutes for Year 9, 50 minutes for Year 10 and 60 minutes for Year 11.
If a member of staff wishes to continue to set ‘traditional’ homework in the form of worksheets, reading, essay writing, exam questions and such like they may do it. All homework set like this must be marked - no student should ever do homework where they is no feedback on it.
Increasingly departments are encouraged to use online platforms for homeworks (e.g. Hegarty Maths) and students should inform their Form Tutor if they don’t have internet access so alternates can be provided.
However, we anticipate that most ‘homework’ will be review work. Teachers should carefully plan these to link with prior and future learning so they become an integral part of classroom practice. Staff should never be so broad as to say “review all the work we have done”, unless for an end of term summative test, but should be specific with “review a specific aspect of topic X, Y or Z”. These should then be interleaved into the next starter quiz so that students are tested on what they have reviewed. Homework should always be recorded in the planner and the parents have to sign weekly to say that the students have done the review work. All students will have an assembly early in the academic year to look at good ways of effectively reviewing at home, led by Mr Leece and Mr Martin.
If students fail to do their written homework, they will be placed into a homework catch up detention. During this detention, they will do the homework or equivalent work set by the classroom teacher / Head of Department. If a student is getting low quiz marks and classroom teachers are concerned they are not doing their review homeworks, then a phone call home should be made and then the detentions used. Do not use the sanction system where a lower ability students is obviously trying hard but scoring lower marks than the rest of the class. We sanction effort (or, lack of) rather than outcomes.