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Coastal Bend Black family choosing to homeschool for learning accuracy

Posted at 11:35 AM, Mar 03, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-06 13:25:46-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The expression "history is written by the victor" can ring true in the classroom, but doesn't have to in someone's home.

More people of color have chosen to homeschool their children and the number has quadrupled over the last three years.

According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of Black parents homeschooling their children instead of having them educated within a public school system jumped from 3.3% three years ago to 16.1% present day.

Tiffany Cardenas made the decision to start homeschooling her three children after pulling her oldest daughter Genesis out of public school.

”I’ve learned what my kids need," Cardenas said. "So sometimes in a big school setting they don’t get that attention (...) that they have been needing."

Cardenas is part of a growing number of Black parents nationally who choose to homeschool their children. Part of that choice has ties to what teachers are allowed — and not allowed — to teach.

"As an African-American, I’m able to go more in-depth about topics that they may not talk about in school and I have free range to do that in my home," she said. "Someone else (might) not necessarily (have) the autonomy to teach them about subjects that may be difficult for some teachers."

Nancy Vera, president of the Corpus Christi chapter of the American Federation of Teachers, said Texas is making it harder for teachers to teach outside the curriculum.

”A lot of it has to do with standardized testing," Vera said. "Teachers are told what to teach, when to teach it, and how to teach it. We do not teach critical race theory in elementary, middle, and high schools—public schools. We do try to teach as much as we can but because of restrictions with the standardize test(ing), we are unable to do so.”

For Cardenas's children, it gives them bigger opportunities to really learn about their history, as well as the freedom that comes from learning without limits.

"I like that I get to do it myself," 13-year-old Genesis Cardenas said. "I really dive deeper into what I’m learning instead of kind of skimming over it or just trying to get through with my school."

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