A few weeks ago, I heard from Etta Kralovec, author of The End of Homework, that she is looking for stories about students whose grades were lowered due to homework incompletion. Have you sent her yours?
I passed on this email I received from a 19-year-old Australian high school graduate, who is very articulate about why he didn’t do homework and what that has meant.
Thank you very much for your strong opinion and professional stance against homework, and most certainly bringing to light the harm homework can do to children. Now, although I am aware that your petitioning is only for elementary years, I wish to share with you my experience, and how homework can and does affect many talented individuals who are not provided with the proper education stimuli and are just thrown an enormous pile of ‘homework’.
Personally, I am a 19 year old Australian male who has declined doing homework for most of my natural born life,
yet because of the workload that teachers had set upon me in my final years of schooling and the resistance I had, I managed to find myself with a final score of 65% in Year 12 (or my ‘senior’ year). Because of this stand against homework (although I excelled in my regular studies), my marks were torn to shreds by teachers placing too much emphasis on homework, with many believing that I’d amount to nothing and even saying this to my face on numerous occasions; such is the attitude of a private Grammar school.
Now, exactly 12 months after I completed my final year of schooling dismally, I’m employed as a feature article writer for a nation-wide magazine, which seemingly defies logic if anyone wishes to accept the myth of Homework. I personally believe that if more emphasis was placed on teaching and structure throughout all subjects then homework would become a thing of the past.
However, because of my results of which the nightmarish workload caused, 90% of the doors in the Tertiary education system are now closed for me. For that, I’d like to thank homework; for without it I’d probably have many more opportunities to succeed in life.
Homework should not be used as an IQ test nor a measure of knowledge, because it can cut a lot of people off, many of these persons being intellectuals. How do I know this? Because I have an IQ of 134, and have been ostracized from any further learning institutions permanently.
Thank you for your time and patience, and an even bigger thank you for the cause you’re fighting for.