Why There’s an Increased Interest in Homeschooling

By Tony Perkins Published on June 2, 2018

There’s a lot to dislike about many public schools — and right now, student safety is at the top of the list. “After a gunman opened fire on students in Parkland, Florida,” a new Washington Times feature explains, “the phones started ringing at the Texas Home School Coalition, and they haven’t stopped yet.”

Like so many state organizations, the Texas organization was used to a certain number of inquiries about homeschooling. President Tim Lambert says they usually averaged about 600 calls a month — a number he watched double over the past several weeks. “When the Parkland shooting happened, our phone calls and emails exploded. And they’re not alone.

“I think what happens with these school shootings is they’re the straws that broke the camel’s back,” Christopher Chin, the president of Homeschool Louisiana, told the Times. “I don’t think it’s the major decision-maker, but it’s in the back of parents’ minds.” In general, he thinks, the violence, bullying, and dangerous environment is tipping the decision for families, who were already sick of the lack of quality instruction and the liberal indoctrination.

More families are angry about what their kids are learning — and they’re pulling their kids out of public school to prove it.

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Over the last four years, reporters have seemed surprised by the mass exodus of children from traditional education settings. The homeschooling movement has ballooned from 1.5 million to estimates of more than 2 million now. Since most states aren’t required to count the number of homeschooling families, it’s still a guessing game. But there’s one thing everyone agrees on: more parents are making the leap — and fast.

Based on the crackdown on faith, the out-of-control sex ed, and genderless chaos, who can blame them? “Most parents homeschool for more than one reason,” Brian Ray points out at the National Home Education Research Institute. When he asks families, he hears these issues over and over again: “a desire to provide religious instruction or different values than those offered in public schools; dissatisfaction with the academic curriculum, and worries about the school environment.”

In some states, like North Carolina, the number of kids in home schools is actually growing faster than private school enrollment. At least at home, parents can take back the control that schools are stealing from them.

Of course, not everyone is happy about the shift — least of all big government bureaucrats, who are worried they’re losing their grip on students. Or local school districts, who lose a significant chunk of funding with each departing student. But what are moms and dads to do when the place they send their kids to learn is punishing their religion, denying them privacy, and forcing them to sit through sex-ed curriculums so pornographic you couldn’t read it on the evening news?

If public schools would stop being hostile to most Americans’ values, fewer parents would be running for the exits.

When President Barack Obama forced schools to open their bathrooms and locker rooms to kids of both genders, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick warned that it would “be the end of public education, if this prevails. People will pull their kids out, homeschooling will explode, and private schools will increase.” Looking back, Patrick was prophetic.

But, as usual, as the number of homeschoolers grow, so do the legislative threats. States like California would like nothing better than to clamp down on the families who want to take full responsibility for their children’s education.

Parents, state legislators and groups like the Homeschool Legal Defense Association need to be on their toes, as liberals try to fight back with tighter restrictions and more regulations on homeschoolers. In the meantime, maybe more school districts will get the message: If they’d stop being hostile to most Americans’ values, fewer parents would be running for the exits.

This was originally published in Tony Perkins’ Washington Update, which is written with the aid of Family Research Council senior writers.


Copyright 2018 The Daily Signal

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  • Nick Stuart

    Hello Christian parents. It’s way past time to get your children out of the public school system. This is an extremely urgent matter bearing not only on your child’s spiritual safety, but their physical safety and even their basic education as well.

    Rather than relitigate the arguments pro-and-con Christian children in the public schools, I’m going to categorically state a proposition:

    You cannot place children for 13 years under the tutelage of a system whose foundational worldview is atheistic materialism, whose creation myth is mechanistic Darwinian evolution, whose sacraments are safe sex and abortion on demand, where marriage and family are whatever combination of people seems right to the people involved, where basic biological differences between male and female are denied, and expect that those children’s spiritual condition will not be adversely affected.

    This proposition doesn’t even address the fact that in many cases the public school system fails in even its basic mission of graduating minimally literate, numerate young adults.

    For many parents, homeschooling is the only option available, with a private Christian school either not available, or way out of reach financially.

    Families will have to either make a lot of money to afford to send their children to a private school, assuming a suitable one is available. Or, one parent will have to stay at home to homeschool the children.

    Churches will have to unlock that building that sits empty for six days a week, get involved in supporting Christian schools, and pass up buying that new espresso machine for the coffee bar to help moderate the cost of tuition. Churches will have to stop treating homeschooling like some kind of bizarre hobby for a few weird families who can afford for one parent to stay at home and not work outside the home.

    Christians who do not have school age children will have to dig in and help families who do with the financial end of their child’s education either directly gifting the parents, or by contributing to the school [OUCH! Just left off preaching and got started meddling].

    Educating children in a private school or at home is of course not a guarantee that they will grow up to be Christians. You can only do what you can do, at some point it is up to them. God calls us to do what he’s called us to do, the results are in his hands. Ultimately it’s up to you to decide if God is really calling you to get your children out of the public schools. Just like it was up to Lot to decide if God was really calling him to get his family out of Sodom. Pro-tip: don’t look back.

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