Bills seek 'no homework' policy, P50,000 fine and imprisonment for teacher violators

MANILA, Philippines – Two lawmakers have filed separate bills that seek to implement a "no homework" policy for school children.

Two House Bills have been filed to prohibit teachers from giving out homework
Two House Bills have been filed to prohibit teachers from giving out homework | Photo Courtesy: ABS-CBN

Deputy Speaker Evelina Escudero and Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas have both filed bills noting the negative effects of homework and are pushing to restrict it.

Escudero filed House Bill No. 3611 that seeks to prohibit teachers from giving homework to students from kindergarten to senior high school. It also seeks to limit school activities only inside the campus.

According to the lawmaker, homework tends to take away most of the learner's time, including time that should be spent for resting and other non-academic activities.

"Homework assignments can deprive students and parents precious quality time for rest, relaxation and interaction after school hours and even on weekends," Escudero's explanatory note stated.

Escudero also noted how students are at risk for fatigue, spinal disease and other affiliations because they have to carry heavy books for their homework.

"School children carry heavy bags as they feel compelled to bring home all their books and activity kits because of the daily homework given by their respective subject teachers. The giving of homework assignments to conclude a lesson is a hallmark of Philippine pedagogy which also needs to be seriously assessed," she added.

Escudero proposed that schools should be equipped with lockers for students to easily deposit and leave their books.

No homework on weekends

Meanwhile, Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas also echoes the same sentiment on homework but proposed it should only be restricted during weekends.

Vargas' House Bill No. 3883 noted a South African study in 2018 which shows that homework tends to become an added burden to students and parents. This burden often results in less family time and demotivated students.

“In addition, a few landmark studies have suggested that homework does impact upon family life, in some cases in a negative way… yet in general, it is positively associated with academic achievement," Vargas stated in the bill's notes.

Vargas' bill imposes a fine of P50,000 or imprisonment of one to two years on teachers who would violate the no-homework policy.

UPDATE: Vargas admits mistake, apologizes for P50,000 fine on "no homework" bill

— Sally, The Summit Express

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