Parents applying for home schooling in NC crash website

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Many parents across North Carolina want to home-school their children because of COVID-19 and the uncertainty in the fall. As a result, the state’s nonpublic education system’s website crashed Wednesday. The site blamed “an overwhelming submission of notices of intent.”

Spencer Mason, with advocacy group North Carolinians for Home Education (NCHE), said, “I was a little surprised it shut down the website, but I’m not at all surprised a lot of people are interested in home schooling.”

Mason said parents have been calling their office with questions for weeks. He said filling out an application on the state’s website is the first step parents take in the home schooling process.

“In a normal situation, the division of nonpublic education can get your home school set up in about 10 working days. And once it set up, you’re good to go. Then it’s a matter of selecting up your curriculum, deciding on a philosophy of education, approach you want to take,” Mason said.

Mason said a recent study showed 40% of North Carolina families with kids in public education are considering home schooling. Since parents play a big role, he doesn’t expect the influx of home-schoolers would cause any problems with current programs.

“In the Charlotte area, we have a large, 300-plus choir, members in that choir. We have sports teams that are home-school sports teams. We generally have activities every week if not more often than that,” Mason said.

Mason said home schooling is an option families should consider.

“I don’t think people understand the freedom you get with home schooling. In other words, you’re not tied down to a particular curriculum. You’re not tied down to a method of instruction,” Mason said.

The state’s website was still down Thursday. It’s unclear when it will be back up.

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