29 Apr, 2012 @ 09:43
1 min read

Spanish parents’ association calls for homework strike

By Eloise Horsfield

THE Spanish parents’ association has called for a two-week ‘homework strike’ to reduce the amount of homework given to schoolchildren.

CEAPA says the time pupils have to spend on homework has greatly increased in recent years, and that children’s education has turned into a humdrum of fact memorising.

“Whether a child does their homework badly or well depends on their home situation,” said a statement.

“Some parents help out with their children’s homework, or invest in private lessons – but many others don’t have the level of education or the money to be able to offer such support.”

The statement also said homework can cause arguments between parent and child, and that children’s time needed to be freed up for sport and cultural activities.

Not all parents agree that children are given too much homework in Spain.

“I wouldn’t necessarily support less homework,” said British expat Sarah West, whose daughter attends the local primary in Alpandeire.

“The kids finish at 2pm and then have on average eight more hours of the day doing nothing particularly productive.”

“But it’s true that the actual way of teaching children in Spain is archaic and they spend hours copying pages and pages of things they have no idea about,” added West.


Eloise Horsfield

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  1. The keys to controlling homework are to bound it by time rather than the assignment, reduce penalties for work not done, and make it clear that every parent is the final decision-maker about what takes place in his or her home. With these principles in place, teachers will become more thoughtful about what they assign, and parent-teacher relationships should improve. Kenneth Goldberg, Ph.D. author of The Homework Trap: How to Save the Sanity of Parents, Students and Teachers. “www.thehomeworktrap.com”

  2. Analising the homework given daily to my son, (2ª Eso bilingue Sierra de Mijas) I must agree with the complaint. In many cases it clearly is work that should have been done during school hours. Apart from that, and even more worrying, is the weight of the rucksack carried every day to and from college and between classes. A simple locker system on school premises would make a huge difference to future health issues.

  3. Interesting!! While other EU countries get more rigorous with schooling to be more competitive & graduate employable…Spain wants less. Maybe that accounts for the extremely HIGH (30-50%)youth UNemployment in Spain, & getting worse. The old adage is always true… you either COMPETE with the Leaders or
    suffer & complain as a Loser.
    ps: NO one hires or remembers… a Loser

  4. Dear Dr. Goldberg, Ph.D. Your view sounds OK in a NON competitive World – READ what the Chinese do regarding student homework.. and maybe this is one reason why their students are WAY above our students’ abilities. I graduated from the most rigorous elementary, high and colleges in the USA. Our homework was NOT determined by “hours” you got the “Job” done, even if you had to stay up all night. Other than politicians & social workers – who the heck ever told anyone that healthy youngsters “had” to get 8 hours sleep each night?! They do NOT get that IN LATER COMPETITIVE jobs! Ken, get Real in this most real, competitive World.

  5. Similar to educational and employment excellence, Lee Iaccoca’s quote comes to mind, ” You either lead, follow or get out of the way”. Always the parents’ and students’ choice of course. For the LAST 2 options, there’s always the possibility of living dependently in your 30’s at home with parents… collecting unemployment benefits from the state, using Dad’s car, finding “a place” to take your lady/man friend to, etc.
    Some “life”

  6. I certainly didn’t have this much homework at Primary school in the 1960’s – excepting tables and the dreaded spelling.

    My bugbear –
    Why do the kids have to spend hours copying out the questions into their exercise book before answering them? Takes ages.

    My 10-year-old daughter has no problem with the English homework but I really pity the families where no adult can speak excellent English. The homework must take hours. (She got marks knocked off for translating `horn`for antlers and not writing `big village’ for town)

    A friend of mine’s 8 year old had to prepare a powerpoint presentation, but the school (British Council Somosaguas) hadn’t actually taught the children how to use powerpoint. He was livid!

  7. they wouldnt be tired if they werent bl**dy dragged out till 3am making a bl**dy racket every few days for some carnival. i agree with the homework part you wont earn money playing in a band

  8. Best of Spain. Glad your not my parent.Maybe, being so competitive, you should join the army, travel the world, meet loads of interesting people and shoot them. Maybe you should join the church and with your competitive edge make it the only religion in the world. The world does not have to be competitive. Enjoy life and learn at your own pace. Children are not being educated anymore they are being trained. Most kids with a decent education will probably end up stacking shelves etc. My kids are fluent in Spanish and are quite bright kids, when they get too much homework I simply give it back to the teacher telling them it was too much. whilst my children are young they will enjoy life as children. The chinese also have the highest suicide rate for young people.

  9. Olive: Hear hear. The interesting thing about youth unemployment in Spain: there are no jobs. No matter how competitive one is, that is a fact. The coasts are small bubbles outside the real Spain. Lots of youngsters are travelling abroad, mainly to the UK and Germany, ohters even to Australia etc to work.

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