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WASHINGTON (ChurchMilitant.com) - Across the nation, college enrollment is dropping, and Americans are seeking an alternative to woke indoctrination.
The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center revealed that college enrollment has steadily dropped over the last few years, while conservative classical colleges are seeing an increase in applications. Jeremy Tate, the founder of the Classic Learning Test, points to the abandonment of traditional education.
"The story of American higher ed really for the past half century has been a story of one college after another really trashing any kind of a serious core curriculum," Tate noted. "You probably took U.S. history or economics or Western civilization. But those days are long gone. Many colleges now have gone to kind of an al-la-carte model."
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, enrollment in colleges throughout America has dropped about 13% in recent years. Meanwhile, Hillsdale, one of the most well-known faith-based institutions with a classical curriculum in the nation, saw a 53% increase in applications at the beginning of 2022. Hillsdale eschews woke ideologies and even resisted overreaching health mandates during COVID-19.
In Florida, Catholic Gov. Ron DeSantis began the year with tackling a problem in his state's higher education system. DeSantis promised to purge the New College of Florida of Marxist theories and gender ideology. He appointed six new conservative members to the college's board of trustees and vowed to stop state funding of "diversity, equity and inclusion" courses. DeSantis and his team are aiming to clean up the liberal arts school and make it a "Hillsdale of the South."
On the other side of the spectrum, the State University of New York is instituting mandatory diversity, equity and inclusion courses starting in the fall.
A New York professor and advocate for campus reform, Nicholas Giordano, warned, "It seems many colleges and universities would prefer to pursue a political agenda rather than produce productive members of society who contribute to a competent workforce and understand their civic obligations. Continuing down this path will render higher education meaningless... ."
Jeremy Tate explained that the aim of a classical education is "the cultivation of virtue, moral formation." He added, "It's an incredible education. I think every parent wants this kind of education for their children. Every parent and even across the political spectrum — parents want their children to go to school and come back more honest. They want their children to grow in wonder and curiosity."
Tate pointed to a number of colleges seeking true education. He cited colleges like "the University of Dallas, Franciscan, Benedictine, Hillsdale Grove City College that have maintained and sometimes double down on a traditional core curriculum." The first three of those colleges are on the Cardinal Newman Society's list of Catholic Colleges — recognized for their commitment to authentic Catholic education. Among the other colleges on the list are Ave Maria University, Belmont Abbey College, Christendom College, Thomas Aquinas College, The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts and Wyoming Catholic College.
Americans are starting to realize that the educational system — starting as early as preschool and kindergarten — is indoctrinating, not educating, their children. Since COVID-19 forced many young Americans to stay home, parents have recognized the dangers of woke curricula, and they have started to resist, choosing to entrust their children to Christian and classical institutions of learning.
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