At Rayner Stephens view homework as an opportunity to enrich the learning of our students and believe it is a valuable learning tool which also prepares our students for the demands that they may face later on in life. Homework is intended to be beneficial for students by broadening, consolidating and mastering the learning achieved within school time, laying the foundation for future self-supported independent practice, and promoting the home/school partnership.

Students’ knowledge and understanding is promoted through the publication of 'knowledge organisers' for each student in every subject termly. These will inform students and families exactly what knowledge the students need to acquire and understand as the building blocks of learning for that term. They are shared with students in lessons and are also on the school website:

Homework supports student development in variety of ways:

  1. It directly links to knowledge organisers to support the retention of key subject knowledge into the long-term memory.
  2. It promotes independent learning. This way of working is vital at all stages of secondary education and will prepare them for the demands of independent revision for assessments and ultimately GCSE exams.
  3. It can involve parents, carers and others in the student’s work for their mutual benefit.
  4. It can give students valuable experience of working to deadlines.
  5. It can support students’ self-esteem and allow confidence to build. 


How We Set Homework

Whole school policy dictates that homework tasks set should satisfy three clear aims:

  1. Develop effective independent learning habits;
  2. Improve students' knowledge and understanding (fluency) as the building blocks of learning in all subjects;
  3. Enhance students' literacy and numeracy.

 Staff will inform students of homework set in lessons and provide the necessary support and resources. This is then supported by the setting of homework through the Class Charts platform. Parents and carers can access the details of the tasks set, how long should be spent on the task and when the task should be completed by. Resources, such as knowledge organisers, can also be uploaded by staff and accessed by both students and their families.

Students’ independent learning habits will be promoted through the homework tasks set on Class Charts and the direct link to the knowledge organisers. This long-term approach to independent study becomes habitual and the same strategies are embedded for all students by the time they complete external examinations in Year 11. All parents and carers can access their child’s homework record via Class Charts.

Homework culminates in a range of low-level retrieval activities based on previous learning. Preparation by students, in advance, with the knowledge organisers from previous topics is expected. Teachers will monitor individual student abilities to retrieve key subject knowledge and where it is perceived to be a continuous concern appropriate intervention will be put in place to further support students.


All students should:

  • Log on to Class Charts daily to check homework tasks that have been set and to meet deadlines. Students will not be issued with planners;
  • Locate and use the termly knowledge organisers on the school website;
  • Log on to their school email account daily to check for shared resources and messages from staff;
  • Use the independent practice skills to improve knowledge and understanding across the curriculum;
  • Read regularly and widely including a range of fiction and non-fiction texts, such as newspapers, magazines, online articles etc.


All Parents and Carers should:

  • Ensure they have used their login code to set up their Class Charts account ;
  • Log on daily to Class Charts and check the homework that has been set;
  • Encourage the completion of homework tasks every day and support the development of effective study habits;
  • Ensure that reading is promoted and valued at home;
  • Support students in acquiring factual knowledge and sound understanding of subject content by discussing academic progress at home;
  • Use the subject knowledge organisers to check for understanding in preparation for tests and assessments at school.


Each homework task will include guidance regarding how much time students should take to complete the activity set.

Given the importance of homework to students’ education, it is necessary for it to be monitored, supported, rewarded and enforced when necessary. Students will be rewarded when they demonstrate the ability to consistently retrieve the identified key knowledge within subject areas.


Rayner Stephens High School provide opportunities for students to work in the Hive on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 2:55 -3:55pm and Fridays 2:55 – 3:30pm if they need a quiet space or want some help with their learning.

Rayner Stephens High School provide opportunities for students to work in the Library every morning from 8:20 – 8:40, every break time, every first lunch 1:00- 1:30 and every day after school 3:00 – 3:50. The Hive is also accessible on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and Friday from 3:00 -3:55pm if students need a quiet space or want some help with their learning.

Students should be working proactively to address their learning gaps, go back through their class notes, create resources for revision and build their long-term memory through regular testing and quizzing. The provision of knowledge organisers and strategies students can deploy at home means there are lots of opportunities for students to develop effective homework habits.


Proactive Study

We also have the following resources to support students’;


Active Learn is a web-based learning platform that includes key course content to support learner knowledge and understanding.

  • BBC BITESIZE (KS3 and KS4 Subjects)

BBC Bitesize is a free web based interactive learning platform that combines theory, video clips and both KS3 and GCSE course content with low stakes testing to help students remember more.

  • SPARX MATHS(Maths)

HegartyMaths allows teaching staff to set skills tasks for students to complete. Students can also use HegartyMaths to complete individual independent study and allows them to track their own progress through the skills units that they have completed.

  • OAK NATIONAL ACADEMY (KS3 and KS4 Subjects)

Oak National Academy provides students with access to a web-based learning platform in a range of subjects at both KS3 and KS4 delivered by subject specialists to support student knowledge and understanding.

  • SENECA ONLINE LEARNING: (KS4 Business, Computer Science, Science, MFL, History)

Seneca Online Learning provides students with free access to a web based interactive learning platform which combines lots of gifs / memes / video clips GCSE course content with lots of low stakes questioning to help learners remember more.

  • TEACH ICT (KS3 and KS4 Computing/Computer Science)

Teach ICT provides students with access to a web-based learning platform including key course content to support student knowledge and understanding. Students will be provided with a username and password to access resources.

  • MEMRISE (KS3 and KS4 MFL)

Memrise is a free online learning platform to support student knowledge and understanding of foreign languages. 

  • QUIZLET (KS3 and KS4 Subjects)

Quizlet provides students with free access to a range of science backed study tools in a range of subject areas to support knowledge and understanding of key concepts.

Knowledge Organisers - Spring Term

Stamford Park TrustIQMTeacher Development Award