Opinion: Public School Enrollment in NJ Lowest in 20 Years — Why?
While public school enrollment was down 3% overall in the past year, many "experts" point to the pandemic and its restrictions on school attendance.
The decrease is the largest in 20 years, since 2001. The argument is being made that the biggest drop in enrollment in public schools in among preschoolers and earlier grade, since distance learning for younger children presents the most challenges.
One can certainly see where that would be an issue. But is there something more to the decrease in enrollment? Have some of the decisions made in New Jersey school districts shaken the confidence in the general public about the state of public schools?
Many schools were closed or reduced to "distance learning" far longer than many parents were comfortable.
Add to that some of the curriculum approved and added to many schools in our state this past year, that gave many parents pause. It seems many school districts are more concerned with social engineering and advancing far left-wing ideology than actually improving the quality of education in our school.
I personally know many great teachers in our public schools, the majority of which don't agree with the direction our public education system is heading in. But they're not steering the ship; administrators and school boards are. Many of which seem to be totally out of step with the traditional values many New Jersey parents have.
Much of our property taxes, the highest in the nation, goes to pay for public education. In my own family there has been a lot of discussion about home schooling, private alternatives or moving out of state where property taxes are much lower and they can afford to pay for private education to avoid the indoctrination and nonsense of some of the curricula being put forward.
It's a real, life-changing dilemma for many families, which leads to one simple question.