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Ticked off by homework

The article "Too close to home?" (Cover story, 15 February) confirms what most teachers have long suspected, that homework is of questionable value. It is driven by parental expectation; I also know of school management teams that use the marking of homework as a blunt measurement of teacher performance. Perhaps we would learn its true value if teachers were paid overtime for marking it? Almost all have resorted to the subterfuge of "tick and flick", which carries zero educational benefit. But attempts to mark in a meaningful way lead to a crippling workload. I have developed model answers and checklists in an effort to make feedback clearer and more useful - and to reduce the time I spend marking.

Mike Follows, Physics teacher, King Edward's School, Birmingham.

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