Common Core Boosts Homeschool Numbers

homeschoolNew evidence is showing that the ranks of homeschooling children are swelling since the imposition of the controversial Common Core State Standards at local public schools across America.

According to a report by the Cardinal Newman Society, findings in several states reveal a significant increase in the number of parents who are taking their children out of local schools and homeschooling them instead.

For example, the state of Virginia “has seen homeschooling rates nearly double over the last decade,” with the amount of the student-age population being home-schooled growing from 1.8 percent in 2002 to 2.7 percent in 2013 according to

Sylvia Diaz, coordinator of the Tri-State Homeschoolers Association, told EAG that the Common Core “has wreaked havoc with a lot of parents, and they say their children are confused and anxious.”

North Carolina is another state where homeschooling has grown 14 percent in just the last year thanks to parents who are looking to escape the troublesome new curriculum.

The phenomenon goes far beyond two states, says Laura Berquist, founder and director of the Catholic distance homeschooling program Mother of Divine Grace School based in Ojai, Calif. She has seen a “strong link” between an increase in homeschooling and implementation of Common  Core across the country.

“Significant numbers of parents have told our office staff that they are enrolling to get away from the Common Core,” Berquist told the Newman Society. “In addition, a consideration of our enrollment statistics for the past two years shows a swift upswing in enrollments that matches up with the timeline of the increase in dialogue relating to institution of the Common Core standards.”

Parents are rightly concerned about the quality and content of their children’s education, she says, and are also worried about the federal government’s involvement in setting national standards.

“This is not a role that should belong to the federal government. Education has always been better handled at a more local level, and best handled by parents, who actually know and love their individual students,” she said.

“These parents also know that Common Core advocates, by their own admission, want a utilitarian education that prepares children for a job, not an education that is about goodness, truth, and beauty. As believers, our parents know that an education centered solely on this life and getting a job is not going to prepare their children for the most important (and longest) part of their lives: eternity.”

Dr. Mary Kay Clark, director of Seton Home Study School, corroborated Berquist’s findings to the Newman Society.

“There is no question that the implementation of Common Core into the classrooms of America has been a strong reason for more parents to choose home schooling,” Clark said. “More educated parents are realizing that Common Core is intended to limit parental influence and to separate students from parental values.”

She continued: “The public school system is dedicated to teaching certain social values. Over the past decades, we have seen these values change from the Judeo-Christian values, upon which our nation was founded, to something quite different.”

The best way to avoid this is to teach children at home, she said, and “the natural consequence of this has been the strengthening of Catholic home schooling families.”

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