Image used for illustrative purposes.
The Ministry of Education has mandated a no-homework policy across public schools in the UAE, reported a section of the media on Wednesday.The initiative aims to lessen after-school workload that ends up occupying a good portion of children’s time at home as they scurry to finish assignments before the next school day.
Foreseeable pedagogical implications of the reform are endless: young learners would be able to better absorb and engage with lessons in class without pulling in late hours the night before, reserve more expendable energy for extracurricular activities, develop hobbies, thoroughly explore their non-academic environment and most of all, enjoy leisure without added pressure.
While the policy is directed to redress lost student time, it will also restructure the country’s academia by giving equal weight to non-scholastic activities that improve students’ cultural awareness and overall physical and mental well-being.
All the stakeholders involved including parents and teachers are expected to benefit from the MoE programme. Without the arduous task of taking work home, teachers can now dedicate more time to perfecting their lesson syllabi and classroom climate. Parents can step back and spend more time with their kids without badgering them about unfinished schoolwork.
Around 256 government schools will abolish homework by February 16, affecting 23 schools in Dubai and 233 in the capital Abu Dhabi.
The UAE is the first to execute a no-homework nationwide policy while countries like Finland and South Korea have acted upon the issue marginally by reducing homework to 2-3 hours per week.
A number of educational institutions across the UAE have announced financial packages and fee reduction to support the community in overcoming challenges posed by the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
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