When reading the article “Spreading Homework Out So Even Parents Have Some”, I had several mixed opinions. This article is about Damion Fry, a ninth grade English teacher at Montclair High School in New Jersey. Fry has a class blog that requires the parents to post about whatever their kids are learning for that week. It is required that the parents post a response or tell why they were not able to post or their child can lose points. While the article said that Fry has only taken points from a student once, I still feel like it is not right. Even though it was not enough points to change the child’s grade, it is not right to make a child suffer because of their parents.
I also take issue with the fact that the parents have to post to the blog. Believe it or not there are still many households that cannot afford to own a computer. This may not be a reality in the town of Monclair, where people such as Buzz Aldrin, Steven Spielberg and Yogi Berra have made their homes, but it is still a common situation in many households. Even if parents have Internet access outside the home it can still be very difficult. Many adults are not allowed to use office computers for anything except for work. I know that I have worked at a law firm where any outside web access was blocked. It was blocked because they had fired so many people for searching the web while at work. So people who don’t have a computer at home and can’t use one at work are limited to using one at the public library (which has limited hours) or pay to use the computers at an Internet cafe or Kinko’s…let’s be realistic. After working all day and having to get home to make dinner, clean the house, take care of the kids and keep the slightest bit of sanity, venturing out to search for a computer to make a post is probably not in the cards. Not to mention the time it would take to read the assignment that you are to be posting on.
This idea of having parents read and do homework to help them get more involved is great for stay-at-home parents or rich parents who have extra time, but this is not a reality for many working moms and dads. I know when I was growing up my parents had to work all the time and didn’t have the luxury to sit and do homework. They were traveling for work or not getting home until late. There are many kids who, like me, are latchkey kids whose parents have to work hard to take care of their families. It would be great if parents could spend all their time helping and bonding with their kids, but unfortunately that is not the way the world works.