Reopening Our Schools

The East Greenbush CSD has formed a School Opening Task Force to develop plans to help safely reopen schools in the fall. As we develop reopening plans for submission to the state, our priorities will be the health and safety of all students and staff and the academic and social emotional needs of our students.

Preliminary Reopening Plan | NYS Reopening Guidance | COVID-19 Updates

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Homework Policies

English Department

Homework or extra-class study, as defined by the East Greenbush Central School District Board of Education, is a continuation and extension of work in the classroom to be done in school, library, study center, as well as at home.

Study of English Language Arts requires regular homework or extra-class study. The demands in grades 9, 10 and 11 differ from senior English courses.  First, major readings (novels, plays, short stories, etc.) must be completed outside the classroom. Students are required and expected to read chapters or sections of a larger piece of literature for future class meetings. Additionally, students are expected to respond to their reading either through journal entries or some form of “did you read” quiz. Second, each grade level (9, 10, and 11) has its own vocabulary text.  Sixteen lessons are introduced, taught, tested and retested during the 40-week school year. Third, written assignments are, for the most part, completed outside the classroom. Writing comprises 40-50% of a student’s ELA grade. After rating and feedback from the teacher, student writing often requires re-visiting and revision. Through the use of Department scoring guides (Rubrics), students address identified areas of concern such as Controlling Idea (Thesis), Development, Organization, Language Use (Diction, Sentence Structure and Sentence Variety) and Conventions (spelling, punctuation, capitalization, paragraphing, grammar and usage). Finally, students report on an outside reading text, a reading completed outside of class, once each quarter. Given the above, students of English Language Arts are never without some form of homework or extra-class study assignment.

All senior semester courses require extensive reading, writing and research. Students are expected to complete these assignments outside of classroom meetings. The same re-visiting and revising practices apply to all senior writing.

Mathematics Department

The mathematics department views homework as a way to:

  • reinforce material
  • practice skills learned in class
  • establish the building blocks for future lessons
  • prepare for tests and quizzes
  • integrate previously learned material
  • connect different topics across the curriculum
  • differentiate instruction
  • provide students with a form of self-diagnosis
  • provide immediate feedback for the student on strengths and weaknesses

If multiple teachers are teaching the same course, a consensus is reached about the percentage of the quarter average that will be determined by the homework grade. Depending on the course and grade level, homework will usually account for zero to twenty percent of the quarter average.

Teachers plan together and almost always give the same assignments. We view homework as practice and believe that it gives students the opportunity to find areas that they need to improve upon before an assessment is given. Therefore, homework is usually given a grade for completeness rather than correctness.

Science Department

The science department views homework as an integral part of the learning process. The main purpose of homework is to provide students an opportunity to practice/review the concepts learned in class, while indicating to the students their individual areas of weakness. Homework is also designed to teach students the study skills that they will need to master and complete independently, in order to succeed in college.

Individual teachers may use different types of assignments for homework in their different courses. These assignments may take the form of, but not limited to:

  • Practice test questions
  • Summary chapter questions
  • Text reading/outlining
  • Student generated review sheets
  • Written research reports/projects
  • Written laboratory reports

Different teachers may assess students’ achievement on homework in different ways in their courses. These assessments may take the form of, but are not limited to:

  • Walking the room and visually inspecting notebooks
  • Collecting and grading, for effort not accuracy, nightly homework
  • Quizzes based on homework
  • Collection/grading of long-term reading and outlining assignments
  • Review in class, with question/answer sessions to assess student understanding
  • Check for completion and/or content

Because of the time spent by students on homework assignments the science department feels that homework completion should be included in the students quarterly averages. Teachers commonly count homework between 10 and 15 percent of a student’s overall quarterly grade.

Social Studies Department

All social studies teachers follow the district policy on homework by giving daily reading or writing assignments most nights of the week that average about 20 minutes. The purpose of these assignments is used to reinforce or introduce class material, to provide background reading for class discussion, regents writing practice, or as a way to cover current events. Homework is either reviewed in class or collected and reviewed by the teacher for a grade. Every social studies teacher counts homework, including long-term projects, as a portion of their quarter grade. Grade penalties are given for work not handed in on time.

The social studies instructors strongly agree that homework is essential to prepare students for regents examinations by providing reading and writing practice as well as for teaching life skills such as time management, responsibility, and accountability. Although daily course assignments vary depending on the instructor, as a department our policy is consistent.