Homeschooling is growing at a record rate in North Carolina, according to reports.
Over 10,000 more students are being homeschooled than just two years ago, with enrollment figures surpassing that of private schools. The News & Observer reports that the North Carolina Division of Non-Public Education estimates that there are 98,172 homeschooled students in North Carolina, compared to 95,768 students enrolled in private schools.
While the majority of students attend public school—1.5 million—there is still a marked departure from the system, as there were just 2,300 homeschooled students in the state 25 years ago.
“If you’re dissatisfied with public education, you really have two routes,” Kevin McClain, president of North Carolinians for Home Education, told the outlet. “You can send your child to a private school, which is really expensive, or you can homeschool. The economy means that, for many people, you homeschool.”
“We are seeing a lot of people homeschooling their children, but also pulling them out of school because they are concerned about the environment they are in,” parent Beth Wegert added to WECT, noting that she spends just $300 a year on curriculum as opposed to thousands on tuition.
Others also state that some are also choosing to homeschool because of concerns about Common Core.
“Common Core is a big factor that I hear people talk about,” Beth Herbert, founder of Lighthouse Christian Homeschool Association, stated. “They’re not happy with the work their kids are coming home with. They’ve decided to take their children home.”
As previously reported, many Christian families are concerned not only about Common Core’s unprecedented nationalization of educational standards, but also by the curriculum’s ungodly content on many issues. Brian Farmer, a columnist for The New American, says the new curriculum “deviates from the Judeo-Christian view of human sexuality.”
“This is not surprising,” Farmed added, “given that the [Common Core] Advisory Committee included directors from the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network.”
The Common Core scientific standards have also drawn criticism for their treatment of topics such as evolution and global warming. Some lawmakers accused the curriculum of promoting speculative theories instead of demonstrable fact.
Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA), a Christian advocacy organization committed to protecting homeschooling freedoms, warns that the Common Core standards are not at all based on Christian values.
“Traditionally, education has been premised on the notion that all education of value is designed to know truth that only can be fully known in God,” an HSLDA article states. “The omission of the pursuit of truth as a core goal of the Common Core demonstrates its alliance with the dominant philosophy of modern education that there are neither absolute truths nor absolute values.”
“Because society has taken one direction doesn’t mean it’s the only direction,” said parent Merrielle Buckner.
To homeschool in North Carolina, one must have at least a high school diploma. After providing notice to the state on religious or other grounds, the parent is required to maintain a regular teaching schedule, give nationally standardized tests each year and keep records of attendance and immunizations.