We have a school-wide homework policy that was developed by teachers and is periodically revised. It has also been informed by input from parents through the School Leadership Team and based on a parent survey a few years ago. Homework should be assigned Monday through Thursday (see modifications for 1st/2nd grade), keeping in mind the following time allotments. Reading four nights a week is a priority in all grades.
Although we realize that homework will not take all children the same amount of time, we believe that children should not have to do much more than the maximum amount for their grade, assuming that they are working without excessive breaks and distractions.
Please note that the maximum includes both the written homework and the reading. Therefore, if a fourth grader reads for 30 minutes and does 35 minutes of written homework but is still not finished, the parent may send a note to the teacher indicating that although the homework was not completed, the child spent the required amount of time working diligently on it. If parents feel that their children finish their homework too quickly, we recommend that they read more, write in their Writers Notebooks, or sketch in sketch books. We have decided school-wide that individualizing homework is not a good use of teacher time.
Homework Folders: All students have a red plastic homework folder that goes home with them every night and returns to school with them every morning. The right side is for current homework and the left is for important notices for families .The folder should travel back and forth every day because even when homework is not assigned, there may be important notices for families, or you may need to return notes or permission slips to teachers.
Because 321 is a large school with many activities and events from week to week, flyers go home via your child’s backpack. We do send a lot of information via email, but still find these flyers essential. There is information from the classroom, the administration and the PTA. Although we try to distribute them ahead of time, much depends on how cooperative the copy machines are at a given time. Also, do not expect your child to cheerfully hand over flyers the day they are received. The left-hand side of the red homework folder will hold these flyers. Please get in the habit of checking it frequently.
Report cards are distributed three times a year in grades 1-5: in November before parent teacher conferences; in March before parent teacher conferences; and on the last day of school. For Kindergarten, the November report is a narrative; the kindergarten report card with ratings gets sent home in March and June. We use our own teacher-developed report cards. Teachers at P.S. 321 write informative comments that get attached to the report card. The school does not keep copies of report cards, so please keep these for your own child.
The Principal, in consultation with assistant principals and classroom teachers, is in charge of assigning children to classes. Requests for specific teachers are not honored. Our top priority is having heterogeneous classes. Parent requests for a certain type of teacher or attention to a particular issue that would affect your child’s placement will be considered but are not guaranteed. Any such requests must be made in writing to the principal no later than the beginning of May.