There is a common belief, particularly in the nation’s more-affluent neighborhoods, that teenagers are swamped with homework and school-related commitments. Some would have you believe that U.S. students are working around the clock and at great risk to their health and well-being to deal with the daunting academic load.

But while that may be true for some, just how widespread is this phenomenon? According to a recent report, just the opposite is going on.

Using data collected from student questionnaires, a recent report from the Center for American Progress found that for many teens and preteens, school is simply too easy. Far from being overworked, they are hardly breaking a sweat in some of their most important subjects. Take eighth grade. (Please.) According to biennial surveys administered by the National Center for Education Statistics, 51 percent of eighth-grade civics students and 57 percent of eighth-grade history students say their work is often or always too easy.

Even math can be a breeze for at least one out of every five students.

That doesn’t mean student life must be a grind but it doesn’t mean it should be a breeze either. When eighth-graders aren’t reading five pages a day at school or home, it’s clearly a lot closer to the latter than the former.


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