Chinese province to ban homework on cellphone apps

BEIJING (AP) — An eastern Chinese province plans to ban teachers from assigning homework to be completed on cellphone apps as part of efforts to preserve students’ eyesight.

Zhejiang province issued a draft regulation last week and is seeking public comment.

Along with barring app-based homework assignments, it would limit the use of electronic devices to 30 per cent of total teaching time and encourage the issuing of paper homework to be completed by hand.

Soaring rates of nearsightedness are blamed partly on screen usage.

The regulation would bar primary and middle school students from bringing electronic devices into classrooms without permission, restrict amounts of homework assigned and increase the time for breaks, sports and extra-curricular activities.

It said no written homework at all should be assigned to 1st and 2nd graders.