Measures to reduce homework load of students

Published Date: 03 November 2021 07:30 PM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Christopher de Souza, Holland–Bukit Timah GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education what changes can be made to the school curriculum so as to lessen the amount of homework given that may exacerbate stress and anxiety during the COVID-19 endemic.

Response

1. MOE is closely monitoring the disruptions to schooling caused by COVID-19 and has taken steps to ensure that students' learning and well-being are not unduly compromised.

2. School leaders and teachers are mindful of the need for students to have a balanced life even during the pandemic, with adequate time for family bonding, personal interests and rest. They are therefore mindful of the need to keep homework load manageable. Every school has an established homework policy that addresses such needs, with school-based measures to manage and coordinate the amount of homework.

3. Beyond homework, there are also other sources of stress in students' lives during the pandemic. By keeping schools open as far as possible, and ensuring that learning can still continue under Home-Based Learning (HBL) conditions, we provided students with a sense of normalcy and sustained social connections, which have been helpful to easing their anxieties.

4. When students return to school from extended HBL, the emphasis in schools is on checking on their well-being and curriculum recovery, and not on rushing to complete the syllabus or prepare for assessment. That is why we have cancelled the Primary 3 and Primary 4 year-end examinations and removed the Common Last Topics from national examinations. These decisions have also been helpful to safeguard students' development and well-being.

5. Through these efforts, we seek to help our students cope with the stress and anxieties exacerbated by COVID-19 disruptions.

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