Parents have been complaining about the amount of homework being assigned for years, but now some New Jersey school districts seem to be paying attention.

Education officials in the Wayne Township school district recently announced all students will be getting three homework-free “wellness” weekends during the school year.

“We have seen an increasing number of districts in the state institute some kind of homework-free weekend policy,” said Janet Bamford, the manager of communications and publications for the New Jersey School Boards Association.

So why do students need a homework break?

“The philosophy is to reduce stress on kids and to give kids and families more time to themselves,” she said. “Districts feel and communities feel that there’s a lot of stress on kids, and sometimes they will enact a no-homework policy surrounding a major holiday" such as Christmas or Spring Break.

She said in schools across the state we’re also seeing “a growing awareness of wanting to assign homework that reinforces learning and isn’t busywork, and doesn’t necessarily introduce new work.”

In addition, Bamford said, many districts offer some kind of guidelines as to how much homework kids should be getting. She said these types of guidelines also help to make homework more consistent from teacher to teacher within a specific grade in school.

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