- The school believes that homework is an essential part of pupils’ learning. Homework will be set regularly as appropriate and pupils will be encouraged to develop good study habits. The purpose of homework is to complement or consolidate work done in school time and is as important to the progress of the pupil as class work. Through the regular setting of homework, the school enables pupils to gain specific skills for life: independence and a sense of responsibility, self-motivation, self-knowledge, time management and organisational skills, research and planning skills, and the ability to arrange social activities around work commitments. Homework helps the pupil to prepare for the experiences of adulthood.
1. Homework will be regularly marked.
2. The nature, type and length of homework will vary according to the age of the pupil and the subject; homework set will be appropriate to the ability of the pupil. It is important that homework forms a meaningful and coherent part of the work for a particular subject. Heads of departments are responsible for establishing homework policies within their areas of responsibility and for monitoring and evaluating the implementation of homework policies within their departments.
- Homework may take a variety of forms. These include specially prepared homework tasks that extend class work, learning homework, research assignments, practical activities, longer-term assignments or preparation for the next lesson. Sometimes it may be appropriate to set homework to finish off work started in class. This option must be used with care as the time required will vary greatly from pupil to pupil. Such homework should be kept to a minimum.
- Where completion of homework relies on use of reference materials or specific equipment, access to these will be available in school, and a corresponding deadline set.
- A homework timetable will be established by the person responsible for the main timetable in consultation with Heads of Department and Heads of Year at the beginning of each year. It will indicate on which nights homework should be set by the various subject departments. Teachers should always allow a reasonable amount of time for homework to be completed.
- The amount of homework will gradually increase as pupils pass through the school; the amount of time spent, however, will vary considerably between individual students even in the same teaching group. As a guide to parents, a pupil in Year 7 should expect homework in two or three subjects each evening, taking between 50 and 70 minutes to complete (and slightly more on a Friday). In Yrs 7-9, a minimum of two hours reading for pleasure is recommended in addition as part of their English homework. Students studying for GCSE in Years 10 and 11 should expect to be doing the equivalent of at least two and a half hours homework per evening. Homework at GCSE level is more likely to take the form of extended pieces of coursework which may cover several weeks and students will be expected to take an increasing level of responsibility for planning the completion of such work. A-level students are expected to do at least five hours independent study per subject.
- Each pupil will be supplied with a pre-printed diary in which to record homework. Form tutors are responsible for issuing the diaries and monitoring their use. Tutors should check and sign homework diaries on a regular basis and should alert their Head of Year if homework is not being set according to the timetable and policy. Heads of Year are responsible for monitoring the setting of homework across their year group and for alerting the appropriate Head of Department and that department’s Line Manager if policies are not being followed. The prime responsibility for the nature and quality of homework remains with the heads of subject departments and through the appropriate Line Manager, with the Senior Leadership Group.
- Subject teachers should ensure that homework is set according to the homework timetable and that pupils in their teaching groups enter the homework task in their diaries.
- Parents will be encouraged to discuss homework with their children, to provide an appropriate space for them to work at home, and to help them plan and manage their homework. This is especially important with extended homework tasks that may cover a series of homework periods. Parents are asked to sign the homework diary weekly and a space is provided for any comments they wish to make.
- Pupils should acknowledge in their work any external help that they have received eg parental assistance, IT texts or graphics, library books.
- This document will be held in full in the Staff Handbook and provided to parents of girls joining the school. Each department will keep a record of how the whole school policy relates to their subject area(s) in their departmental handbook. The policy will be subject to regular review.