I am in the process of thinking about rules, routines, and procedures I would like to have in my classroom for the coming year; I am a first-year new teacher at the middle school level. One area I've been going back and forth with is accepting late work. Initially, I was going to adopt the policy of 50% per day; after 2 days it is a 0, but I felt this might be a little too harsh at the 7th grade level. Then I was thinking about 20% per day; this, in essence, will give a student a whole academic week to turn in a late assignment for at least partial credit and after that the assignment goes in as a 0. A good friend of mine suggested having a "homework ticket" where students get, say, 2 tickets per quarter and if they do not have a homework or in-class assignment that was due, they can turn in a ticket and the assignment won't count for or against them, but after the tickets run out, assignments go in as a 0, no questions asked (unless there's some sort of extenuating circumstance going on with a particular student). The thing is, I want to establish consistency in this particular area, but do not want to come across as a complete jerk. I do believe that middle school is a time where students need to begin learning true accountability for their work, taking those first initial steps. I've seen various teachers accept late work 2, 3, 4 weeks after the fact, and though they were only giving the students 40-50% as a mark, I feel it still is letting the kids think, "I can turn this in a month down the road, and I'll still get some sort of credit for it...no bother." I was told by my superintendent and principal that I need to establish clear rules and consequences within the first 6 weeks or else it will be a difficult year. I'm just trying to get everything in place as best I possibly can Thoughts?