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More UK parents take children out of school to home-educate: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This file photo shows British parents supervising education of their children at home.

A growing number of parents in the United Kingdom have opted over the past years to take their children out of school and home-educate them, according to a report.

Research by Sky News showed that the number of parents opting for home-schooling of their children since 2013 had increased nearly two and a half times, or 242 percent.

Most of those parents cite fear of “permanent exclusion” of their children from schools for their decision, the report said, adding that most of the children who are removed from schools are those who have difficulties socializing or experience problems like bullying, abuse and harassment.

It said an estimated 45,000 children are now being educated outside of a traditional school environment in Britain, which amount to a 78-percent increase compared to 2013.

The main factors for opting out of the school system have been “religion, culture and philosophy”, the report said, adding that white, British parents are frequently turning to home-educating of their children.

The rising trend comes as local councils in Britain have not much power to check whether children are receiving proper education at home. There is no set curriculum or exams for the home educators and teaching does not necessarily have to be carried out by the parents. If the children want higher education, they should take mainstream exams; otherwise, they take lessons based on their interests.

Britain’s Department for Education is investigating whether there should be a compulsory registration system for the home-schooled children in the country so that the government and local authorities could monitor and track them more easily.

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