It’s the first day of a homework-free weekend for Kirkwood high school students. The school decided to give their students some relief to help the mental health of not only them, but their teachers as well.
"Usually homework just takes over and I don’t make it to the gym that weekend," said Emma Leeker, senior at Kirkwood HS.
But not today. The weight of homework is off of Leeker's shoulders--at least for a couple of weekends.
"It's definitely overwhelming at times," she said.
Overwhelming, because on a normal weekend, she's spending at least five hours on homework alone.
“Sometimes seems a little bit impossible," Emma said.
That's why you're not hearing complaints from Emma about the school's decision to give students a break.
"I do not miss doing homework this weekend," she said with a laugh.
And that's got Emma's mom, Karen Leeker, a bit jealous.
"I wish I had,” she said. “I still would like it as a working person you often do work on the weekends."
A college senior, Emma takes AP classes. She's on the dance team and on a number of different clubs at school.
"Even now applying for scholarships and trying to get to the next step of housing and roommates, it can be a lot,” she said.
As a student preparing for college, she knows the importance the role homework plays. She's not advocating for it to be all year round--though she wouldn't mind it either. All she's saying it's a break needed for both students and teachers.
"[A] weekend here and there is 100 percent a good decision," Emma said.
And though mom is a little jealous, she can't disagree about that.
"I hope you, the kids get a chance to really take advantage of it and do something they normally wouldn't do on those weekends,” Emma’s mom, Karen said.
Emma’s mom does support the homework-free weekends. It’s early, so she can’t say if it should stay, but it does, she hopes it is a balanced approach.
The next homework-free weekend for Kirkwood High School students is in March.