Recently, I flagged some posts as "a solution to homework" on the question Net Force of Equal and Opposite Gravitational Forces Don't Equal Zero?. Knowing which posts were flagged is irrelevant for this meta post. My flags were declined with the reason$^*$
The question has not been closed as HW, and if OP had not written the question in the style of an exercise, no one would have thought it was one.
I first want to focus on the latter part of this : if OP had not written the question in the style of an exercise, no one would have thought it was one. This is true for any "homework-and-exercise" question on this site. We ask students to frame their question to focus on the concepts they are confused about, not the exercise, calculations, etc. So really this argument could be made about any question: "This could have been framed in a way so that it wasn't an obvious exercise/homework question, so it actually shouldn't be considered a homework question." Therefore, I don't think this is a valid argument.
This is obviously a student posting a homework question and asking for someone to check their reasoning and/or give them a better answer. This leads to the first part: The question has not been closed as HW... Why does this matter for flags on answers? The answers supplied to this post could very well be turned in by the student as an answer for their homework. Just because the question wasn't closed as homework doesn't change this. There are answers here that are solutions to this homework question, and this is why I raised the flags that I did.
However, I understand that my opinion is not the only one that matters, and I would rather align with the community than only focus on what I think. So here are some questions I am left with:
1) Should answers that are solutions to homework problems only be flagged as such after the question is closed specifically for being an off topic homework question?
2) If a question is not closed as an off topic homework question then does this mean that its answers cannot be considered solutions to homework?
3) If I can see a way that the question could be worded to not be an off topic homework question, does this mean it should not be closed as an off topic homework question?
I think "no" is the answer to all three questions, but maybe I'm missing something. I always look forward to learning more about the community and how certain scenarios are best handled, and I hope this post can help myself and others gain more insight here.
$^*$Actually, one flag was accepted as helpful, but no action was taken because of it, which makes the declined reason even more odd to me. By the given reason, all of my flags should have been declined, not all but one.