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Definition and Purpose:

Homework is defined as work and/or studying related to the classroom learning experience that is done outside the regular classroom. This might be accomplished in a school tutoring situation, study hall, small group learning opportunity, learning lab or at home.

The purpose of homework evolves in complexity as the student matures. In the early years, homework is a tool to teach beginning study habits and to encourage learning in all environments.

For the older student, homework takes on more specific roles:

  • To encourage independent study skills
  • To reinforce and build upon concepts and skills learned in the classroom
  • To encourage in-depth exploration beyond the classroom curriculum
  • To provide opportunities for the student to gain experience in the utilization of community resources
  • To foster a link between home and school
  • To prepare for more thorough and sophisticated class discussion

Overarching Philosophy:

Homework is considered an integral component of the overall educational experience in the Cape Elizabeth School Department (CESD), to one degree or another, depending on grade level and age. Homework should be designed to enrich the learning process, to aid in the mastery of skills and to inspire and stimulate further learning for students.

It should not be expected that homework is mandatory in each subject each night; rather, appropriate and purposeful assignments should call for and encourage an extension of classroom learning. Teachers will use their discretion to determine the need for homework and shall make an effort to offer only meaningful assignments. Teachers have a responsibility to provide an adequate understanding of assignments and also to provide timely feedback, corrections or grades on work given.

Parents are expected to view homework as an important extension of their child’s learning experience, offer assistance in grades 1-4 and assistance and support in grades 5-6. Communication between students, teachers and parents is encouraged to ensure problems are addressed early and the best interests of the student are a top priority.

Finally, homework should never be used as a punishment. It should be viewed as one of many outside learning experiences along with other enrichment opportunities that are highly valued in our community. It is important to help students find a balance of academics, home life and extracurricular activities.


  • December 13, 2005 (Replaces original IKB)


  • February 11, 2014