A NEW homework policy will be rolled out at Law Primary School this month.

Instead of conventional homework, pupils at the North Berwick school will be given a range of ‘life skills’ tasks they can complete with their families.

It comes after headteacher Jill Wareham agreed last summer to a trial where pupils were not given any homework.

After that pilot project ended last October, a survey was carried out of pupils, parents and teachers to gather views and the results were revealed at a meeting of the school’s parent council last month.

Stacy Cathcart, co-chair of Law Primary Parent Council, explained where the idea of no traditional homework originated.

She said: “Last spring, a group of parents approached us with concerns about the amount of homework set by the school and questioned how much value it was to the children.

“Jill Wareham said that this was something educators were talking a lot about too and it was agreed that she would talk to the teachers, get their initial thoughts, and come back to the parent council.”

Mrs Cathcart said there had been a “huge response” to the survey, with more than 800 comments and 322 responses. Views were split but 80 per cent of pupils and parents felt the pilot had allowed them more time to do other things.

“It was clear from the responses that opinion was very divided and we worked hard with Jill and the teachers to come up with a compromise,” she added.

Mrs Wareham told the Courier: “We want everyone to continue with their reading at home but we’ve come up with a chart of some tasks that pupils will be able to complete with their families.

“[The new policy] is designed to be flexible and reduce the stress on parents – most people who responded did not favour a return to the old homework method.”

As part of the school’s new home learning approach, maths and spelling booklets would be given to pupils to complete at home but would not be marked by teachers.

A life skills grid will also be given to pupils to complete and show to their teacher by the end of the term.

Any unfinished classwork pupils may have can also be taken home under the new scheme, which Mrs Wareham said had been drawn up “in partnership” with the parent council.

The proposals come into effect when pupils return from the February break next Tuesday.

Mrs Wareham was aware that some parents were concerned how pupils would cope when they move up to high school and their workload significantly increases.

She said Fraser McCallum, a depute headteacher at North Berwick High School, was due to attend the next parent council meeting on March 19 to discuss the issue.