Children have a break after the NJ school district schedules 3 homework-free weekends

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Wayne’s students will have a little extra something they can feel thankful for this Thanksgiving: a long weekend with no homework.

Passaic County District K-12 is among those in New Jersey embracing “wellness weekends,” a national concept in which students are given a full break from all academic responsibilities.

Wayne’s superintendent Mark Toback announced three homework-free weekends – the first from November 24-28, the others in February and May.

Thanksgiving is November 25.

Toback, in a letter to parents, introduced the concept as benefiting not only students, but also their families and district staff.

“During each of the three Wellness Weekends, students have no obligation to the school district, which means no homework, no tests or quizzes, and no due dates directly before or after. a weekend of well-being. We hope this will lead to healthier students, employees and families, ”he wrote.

Wayne first included Wellness Weekends in the calendar during the 2018-19 school year.

Toback did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but in explaining the initiative three years ago, said high school students in Wayne typically have 4-5 hours of activity and homework per day, in addition to ‘to attend classes.

A 2015 study from the American Journal of Family Therapy claimed that at the elementary school level, too much homework causes children to dislike school, in addition to damaging their social skills and confidence. in them.

Other New Jersey school districts that in recent years have offered Wellness Weekends include Woodbridge, Princeton, and West Windsor-Plainsboro.

In October 2017, the K-8 Denville School District declared four weekends to be homework free and announced that no major projects would be due on the first day back from Thanksgiving, winter break and spring break. .

About 9,000 students are enrolled in the Wayne School District, which has nine elementary schools, three middle schools and two high schools.

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Rob Jennings can be reached at [email protected].


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