Historically, homework was frowned upon in American culture . With few students interested in higher education , and due to the necessity to complete daily chores, homework was discouraged not only by parents, but also by school districts. In 1901, the California legislature passed an act that effectively abolished homework for those who attended kindergarten through the eighth grade. But, in the 1950s, with increasing pressure on the United States to stay ahead in the Cold War , homework made a resurgence, and children were encouraged to keep up with their Russian counterparts. By the end of the Cold War in the early 1990s, the consensus in American education was overwhelmingly in favor of issuing homework to students of all grade levels. 
Parents and teachers interviewed for this article say that in teachers' zeal to expose and eliminate cheating, they must be careful to have proof and not just a suspicion of wrongdoing. "My daughter worked extra hard on a book report for school. She put a lot of effort into writing and rewriting," said one parent. "When her teacher read the report, he accused her of getting help from a parent. I knew the work was her own, and when I confronted the teacher, he backed down. But this experience left my daughter confused and frustrated. 'Why should I work hard?' she said to me. 'The teacher is only going to accuse me of cheating if I do my best.'"