LDS Church to Independently Teach Both Religious and Secular Education Classes   148 comments



This is very good, very big news.

Even though the fight for freedom in education is fought by freedom-loving people of many different religions, I share this great news, which comes from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, hoping it will inspire other people and other churches as it has inspired me.

In February 2016, in an all-employee meeting at Brigham Young University’s Idaho campus, the Commissioner of Education of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Elder Kim B. Clark, gave an address, “CES: The Lord’s Educational System for His Church”.

The 54-minute talk can be viewed here.

Elder Clark announced that the church is launching a new initiative in fall 2016 that will eventually offer secular and religious education courses, from Master’s degrees down to high school, to people wherever the church is organized.

Elder Clark began by saying, “Whatever level of spirituality we now enjoy in our lives, whatever degree of faith in Jesus Christ we have, whatever strength of commitment or consecration we have, whatever degree of obedience or hope or charity is ours, whatever level of professional skill or ability we may have obtained, it will not be sufficient for the work that lies ahead.  Brothers and sisters, you and I need to be much better than we are now, in every aspect of our lives.  The scriptures teach us that the world is now, and will be, in commotion and we can see it all around us. Wickedness and darkness will increase.  It seems hard to imagine, but it will.  Yet in that darkening world, there’ll be increased light, divine light.  The Lord Jesus Christ has a great work for us to do with the rising generation.  It’s a greater work than we’ve ever done before…  The Lord is working in power to strengthen teaching and learning in his true and living church.  He’s hastening his work.”  (minute 2-3)

He said that last October, the presidents of the Church’s universities counseled together and then proposed a new initiative that was soon approved by the church leaders. (minute 13-14)

It is this: “The Church Educational System (CES) will seek to provide opportunities for education to the members of the church wherever the church is organized.

The church has long operated universities, seminaries, institutes, education weeks, high school classes through its universities and through its churches.  But now, the Church will be rolling out a new program that will use all its resources to increasingly provide both secular and religious education to all its members, wherever the church exists.   Elder Clark speaks of Master’s degrees down through high school classes being offered, both online and inside church buildings; I hope, and guess, that in the future, junior high and elementary classes will also be offered.

At minute 16:37, we learn that the first principle for the church’s new initiative is:

“Education is a spiritual experience”.  It explains, “Education– the struggle for perfection– is a spiritual experience and is essential for building the Kingdom of God and establishing Zion. Religious instruction, gathering experiences and a spiritual focus to online learning will be essential.”

The second principle is: “The initiative will be a collaborative, system-wide effort involving all CES institutions.  We will also partner with Self Reliance Services (SRS) and other Church departments as appropriate and will build as much as possible on resources, courses and programs that already exist”.

The third principle is:  “Instruction will be delivered online and in local gathering activities at Institutes and chapels.  Study at local schools, combined with religious education at an Institute, is an important part of this initiative.”

The fourth principle is:  “Students will access programs through their local Church units, guided by priesthood leaders, supported by CES and Self Reliance Services.”  Elder Clark emphasized the fact that these classes are to be held under the direction of local priesthood leaders; he added:  “We felt really strongly about this.”

Even though Elder Clark said, “We’re talking about a global audience that numbers in the hundreds of thousands,” (minute 44) he felt it was important to make this educational program locally driven by local leaders.

In closing, Elder Clark reminded us that Ephesians 6:12 states:  “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”  He asked those in attendance to rise to the challenge, to repent daily, and to meet the great opportunities and responsibilities before us by receiving greater spiritual power from Christ.

He said, “The rising generation in this marvelous worldwide church needs education, including the plain and simple truths of the gospel…. the rising generation will learn deeply and they will rise up.  We know this will happen.”

What a great message.  What great news.




Elder Kim B. Clark


148 responses to “LDS Church to Independently Teach Both Religious and Secular Education Classes

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  1. Are these separate but equal classes, or combined?

  2. I am so excited! Our youth are in desperate need of this. Thank you!!!

  3. Oh my gosh, I can finally teach! I refused to teach so long as I was forced to join the NEA, the largest commie group in the nation, but I can teach this way! When does it start? Where do we apply? WARCHICK

    • I’m excited too. I am also a teacher who has refused to be a part of the communist core. I also would like to be a part of this.

      • You are very scary. Have you read the common core? Are you aware that teacher ed students at BYU schools are taught how to teach the common core and that the common core increases rigor in the classroom and critical thinking skills. “Warchick”? You want to teach the gospel of peace?

        • Warchick can have that opinion of common core. If you havent been reading lately there is a combination of several factors that likely were a topic of discussion when this plan was discussed. Things like God taken out of school and how schools teach kids how to take a test and not how to learn, the convoluted way that common core math arrives at an answer etc… So yes BYU teaches about common core and its methods it has several education degrees available and common core is still available to learn about at BYU as graduates go all over the country to find jobs.

          • I am saddened that someone would not teach because they thought they had to be a member of the NEA. I have been teaching for 30 years – I am not, nor have ever been a member of the NEA. It is not a requirement – it is a choice. In fact, I found it interesting that in a time when the local chapter needed to stand up for teacher’s rights – it was non-members who got most involved in the positive efforts to effect change. The local chapter president noticed this – and chastised those who were griping about non-fee paying teachers. I agree with some of these posts and and am grateful for those who clarified that the church is not against the common core and are actually using it. As I watched the video of Elder Clark’s talk I did not hope for the church to expand it’s education to middle and elementary schools nor did I hear any intent of this happening in the future. I did love his address – especially at the end where he was recouting the Savior’s blessing of the children in the America’s. My heart was touched and my belief reinforced that being a teacher, especially of young children, is one of the things I am to do while on this earth. I am grateful that I have spent 30 years doing just that and have been able to teach – even in a secular setting – with the knowledge that these are children of God and that how I treat them and how I teach them is helping them to be their very best!

          • There is no such thing as common core math. The math that everyone calls Common Core Math is actually called Mathematical Thinking. As I teacher I have trained in mathematical thinking and am very supportive of it. it may be seem wierd – especially to those for whom math was easy. For me, who struggled with math, it was amazing because instead of memorizing and trying to remember where to apply rules, I finally understood the concepts behind the rules. Common core is a set of standards that was put together to put students across the united states learning the same things at the same time. One benefit – when student’s move their prior education isn’t totally different than their continuing education. Another – it allows students to be ready to work outside of their own communities if they so choose. The Common Core does not specify HOW to teach the concepts (although many educational companies have jumped on the bandwagon and created lesson plans, etc.) However, research and new methods of teaching do encourage teachers to have students learn differenly than we have in the past – like the basis behind Mathematical Thinking – changes that have come about while the Common Core came out also include teaching kids to think instead of memorize. This is the very reason that the Lord has a church educational system – because thinking people are able to make wiser choices and be less won over by what Satan puts out there.

            • I’m no college graduate. And I understand this blog is about math. However, as a “teacher”, you need to check your grammar. I’m still shaking my head at your 3rd/4th(not sure which. After your 3rd . (period), but you didn’t capitalize “it” so not sure. But I digress. My point in replying was to point out that I got confused by “it may be seem weird”. Is that suppose to be “it may be weird” or “it may seem weird” or are you using another language?

        • THANK YOU!

        • You are goofy. Common core is a financial scam. The tests are designed intentionally with a high failure rate, & required retesting. Tests are charged to the school district @ $16 per test, per student. Since the tests are designed to not be intuitive logically, failures & cash flows are guaranteed.

    • Of course anyone whose opinion is different than yours is a commie. The NEA is a association of educators. Nothing more or less than that. As educators the group tries to make the educational system of the country better. If keeping closed minded “war chicks” out of the class room is the result all the more reason to support them.

      • Actually the NEA is a union who has very strong beliefs against anything that goes against their agenda and power. They are one of the biggest opponents of homeschooling. We continually fight them in the political special interest realm.

        • You mean….the NEA and other unions are a lot like organized crime? Forcing us to pay for something we don’t want or use…hmmmm…

          Sent from my iPhone


      • The Nea has a totaitaroan they indoctrinate for state goals and do not educate / our country would be better off without rhw wvil Department of Educations

      • I’m with warchick. I disliked the NEA very much, but was forced to pay my money into it. They donated that money to politicians that I was not in agreement with whatsoever. I’m a retired teacher.

        • The corruption in the national NEA is rampant. Their goals for our children are NOT my goals. On the same hand the Department of Education, run by Arne Duncan, who shouldn’t be in charge of anything to do with children, in case anyone doesn’t know his history, is totally unconstitutional. It should be disbanded and the power and responsibility returned to the state and local school boards.

    • It is illegal to force any teacher to join the NEA, however a nonNEA teacher can give consent for the union to speak in their behalf during negotiations. There are other teacher associations out there that are faith based and stay out of the political arena keeping the focus on supporting the teacher. This has helped me continue as a teacher so that I can be part of children’s lives who are in desperate need of a positive influence.

    • BYU teaches teachers to use common core, and in the the accredited high school degree offered by BYU common core standards are used. This new CES initiative does not change that. This blog post is much too speculative, I suggest you read the Church’s official announcement of this new initiative here: . Sorry folks but no the Church isn’t building new high schools or elementary schools. In face you’ll not see much of these changes if you live in the United States.

  4. I’m a little slow…what exactly does this mean?

  5. To me this sounds like the current Pathway program that is being put into place all over the world and the concurrent classes for high school students through BYU-I. Both wonderful programs.

  6. Yippee! My children just caught the cusp of the wave of Common Core–I wish they were younger so they could benefit from this program!

  7. Finally!!! I have been praying for the church to do something to promote a safer place to learn. I homeschool so this is also great news for us homeschoolers and gives me a bit of validation for all the years I have been homeschooling, now coming up to 36 years.

  8. Why will priesthood holders oversee the program? Shouldn’t men and women with training in education be the administrators? How will the program gain accreditation?

    • It is under priesthood leadership, that does not mean the priesthood does the teaching, it just means it is under their direction. A lot like a catholic school that is under the leadership of an ecclesiastical person but their classes are taught by teachers.

  9. why on earth are priesthood holders acting as gatekeepers for this education program? everything falls to them, they’re overscheduled. women are not utilized. women are traditionally more involved in education for their children. this may tie church standards and or temple worthiness to being able to access these programs. just some reasons off the top of my head.

    rebecca campbell
    • have you been endowed? might be time for a review of some of those concepts.

    • It doesn’t say anywhere that only the Priesthood will be teaching these courses. Only that the priesthood will make sure things are organized and run effectively.

    • It’s not RUN by priesthood holders but “under the Direction of The Priesthood” just as Relief Society is “under the Direction of The Priesthood” but not RUN by priesthood holders.

    • The priesthood oversees every thing done in the church. Take relief society for example. It is all run by the women, but overseen by the priesthood. I imagine it will be similar. The priesthood will appoint great educational leaders to run the program.

      • Well, not everything is overseen by priesthood authority. The recent letter from the First Presidency to the sisters to get involved helping refugees, with its accompanying suggestions for involvement in local organizations, is not receiving any priesthood oversight. Just an FYI.

    • If it’s not overseen by the Priesthood why have it? Just let the world continue to run it. I see it being run just like the church owned colleges. They are still run by educators they just have priesthood oversite.

    • Like everything in God’s kingdom it is done under priesthhood authority. But that doesn’t mean bishops and stake presidents are actually administrating it and the ones who have to teach. I believe the administration will fall the CES employees ( men and women who are trained and educated to do this kind of thing) and the teaching will be by educated men and women with experience and qualification to teach.

    • Everything is under the umbrella of the Priesthood! ALL work done in the Temple is also! Men and women are equal…side by side…They just have different responsibilities, combined together to make up the WHOLE.

    • Don’t you know how the LDS operate by now? Can you say C-U-L-T.

    • You realize that the Relief Society is also overseen by the local priesthood (a.k.a. Bishop), right. I didn’t see where it said the priesthood would run it. I had male and female teachers in seminary, and I imagine this will be set up similarly.

      Charles Sanders
  10. cool! cool! cool!

  11. When will this be available to everyone no matter their financial status or church standing? I know many mothers who are poor or non members, but still want the best education possible for their children. Will my High school aged child be able to walk to our stake center for school? How can I help to speed up the process to have this available to my elementary age children? I have been waiting for the secular and spiritual to be common in education with out the financial strain of private school.

  12. A few years ago a friend who is a teacher was called into her Bishops office. The bishop said that the Bishops had been asked to meet with ward members who were teachers to ask them to keep their credentials up even after retirement. No other explanation given. Just a request from church headquarters. Now we why!

  13. This is so exciting! I begged for this when we were raising our Children in New England.

  14. I am in the Pathway program now. Also, I am the Self-Reliance committee chairperson in our stake. They are both inspired programs and will work well together. This is an exciting move made available for all members. Yea!!!

  15. I can no longer support this website. While I am not in favor of the testing requirements surrounding the Common Core I certainly do not support religious institutions educating our youth. I will continue to do everything I can to help create better public education for all students. Sadly, this is not a part of it.

    • It is voluntary so no one is forcing anyone to use this program. But we still have in this country the right to send our kids to religious schools in both the lower grade levels and Universities.

      • Promoting religious school is not the same as working to improve the PUBLIC school system. This website obviously has other objectives and motivations. That’s fine but I don’t share those objectives.

        • I anyone thinks the LDS Church is going to FORCE anyone to do anything, better bone up on the principles of AGENCY. You will always have a choice. Use it wisely!

          • You misunderstand my point. I do not care if people send their children to religious schools and I know that mine are not forced to attend such places. My issue is with this website in particular. I thought it was in place to support public education reform but it’s now apparent that it’s a ideology-based initiative. Not my thing.

        • “Public” education, as it is now, is a communist system. In other words, the government owns and controls the factors of production. You might do well to remember that the government is not your friend, nor your children’s. A separate school system will hopefully prevent, or make great inroads in preventing, the brainwashing socialization and dumbing down of people that has led to viewpoints such as yours.

          • You are so quick to become rude and antagonistic simply because I express a different opinion. If that’s where your education/spirituality has guided you then I’ll happily differentiate my children’s learning experiences from yours.

          • Right. Because religions never use brainwashing, socialization, and the dumbing down of people to keep them in the fold.

            • Communism is a religion worshipping the leaders in the government system. Lol

              Thanks for pointing that out!

              Sent from my iPhone


              • You obviously don’t know the definition of “religion.” I doubt you know the definition of “communism” either… and Jesus was more a communist than he was anything else.

                • 🙄

                  You are clueless. But; it’s your choice.

                  Enjoy your life!

                  Sent from my iPhone


                  • I love how you resort to cocky, smug, ad hominem attacks when the discussion doesn’t go your way. Of course you don’t know anything about me, but I am a successful scientist who enjoys a productive life in the service of others… just as Jesus did. How you livin;, sister?

                    • And you say *I’M* cocky and smug!!! ROFLOL

                      I’m a sinner like everyone else, just doing my best to get through the day.

                      Sent from my iPhone


                    • Why not forego all the “LOL” and “eye roll” affectations and free yourself from the slavery of Bronze Age mythology. A mind free of the shackles of arbitrary definitions of sin is a powerful tool. Freedom from religion and equality for all humankind is the knowledge we should be seeking.

                    • I know your faith in the absence of sin is very powerful…but I prefer my faith of love and kindness to all.

                      Have a great day.

          • The government is you. We the people insisted it be that way. We control government by electing representatives who act as stewards of the constitution, federal law, lands and the various services we wanted on our behalf. If that leads to a communist school system it is either our desire to have it so, or our fault it is so.

        • This will improve public education. More competition is always better. As of now, the public school system is a subsidized monopoly and, because of this, is one of the most well funded, least efficient institutions in the US. Private schools break down the monopoly and will improve efficiency. If you care about the quality of public schools, you should support competition and this initiative as well as other private school initiatives.

    • I’m totally in agreement with you! This is terrible.

    • you must have been educated in the public schools…

      • You have forgotten how to use capital letters so I wouldn’t be critical of other people’s education if I were you. 😉

    • I live in the Bible Belt and there are all kinds of religious schools. Many of the local churches offer private school. Why don’t you support churches offering an alternative to public education? I’m also educated as a teacher, but currently a stay-at-home mom. I substitute quite a bit and see how left-leaning the education system is. I would love a new alternative for my kids.

  16. Ooo, I hope this is true! I can’t wait for the class sizes in my kids’ public school to decrease!

    • It won’t decrease the size of your child’s public education. Just more teachers will be out of jobs. I live near charter schools that take a lot of kids from our public schools and we went from year around because of our high enrollment to traditional because the numbers have dropped, yet class sizes keep going up because they will only allow a certain number of teachers per number of students. I went from having 21 students to a projected 33 this year.

  17. This is absolutely the right move. Spirituality never has been and never will be separate from education. Somebody’s morals and ideology will thread all academics. As a parent, I have the right and responsibility to choose the moral teaching of my children without apology. The endeavor to “separate religious and moral teaching from academics” has simply created a vacuum which has been filled by secularists around the world. It has become part of the disease that is destroying the hearts and minds of humanity. Our children deserve more.

  18. I’d be willing to teach math, science, and Spanish again.

  19. So listening to his address, I never heard him mention anything about middle school or elementary students. So is it just the “hope” of the blogger of this article or is there something I’m missing. It is great they offer classes to high school students but the curriculum and classes are very sparse in this area.

  20. Do you have the rights from the Church Educational System to use their logo on your webpage?

  21. My children both took online high school and college level courses through BYU while in home school (high school). The courses were poorly constructed, the user interface was substandard, grading was erratic and slow and the text books were out of date.

  22. I have homeschooled my children since 1997. My youngest two are still in high school. I think they would benefit greatly from this!!! How exciting.

  23. This is a spectacularly careless analysis of Elder Clark’s talk. He states that the program is designed to operate in consort with local public institutions of learning, not to supplant them. He also states that the crucial factors is helping individuals become proficient in the English language. Here is a reality: the Church is mostly young, mostly poor, and mostly non-native speakers of English these days. This is a program designed to lift people who are economically, socially, and culturally disadvantaged to a place where they can enjoy the blessings of self-sufficiency and self-respect. This is not a kickback against Common Core, or an attack on the public schools. It is certainly not a Utah-centric program. Speaking as one who is currently an early morning Seminary teacher, after spending 22 consecutive years in leadership callings ranging from Elders Quorum President to Bishop, I can tell you that the need for this program is great: we have tens of thousands of Church members, who lack the basic skills necessary to “stand independent.” That includes a familiarity with basic Gospel principles. This program is for them. It’s not a repudiation of the American Education System, or the Church’s endorsement (or, in fairness, condemnation) of those who choose home schooling.

    • Thank you. I was wondering how on Earth “working with local schools” REALLY meant “LDS school system.”

      Interested Catholic
    • Thank you for the fresh air of reason and unbiased analysis.

    • Totally agree this web page is a “spectacular careless analysis” of Elder Clark’s talk, and then the webpage has the Church Educational Systems logo. I can’t imagine anyone thinking they should post that on their website. They have this website set up to appear that the church is against Common Core. Don’t think they are being to forthright on that call.

    • Thank you. I read Elder Clark’s talk and was wondering what in the world people were talking about on here. He didn’t even hint at a church school system. He did not say the program would replace the school systems already in place. It is not a program that will fight back against common core, public school, homeschool or anything else.

      Ginger Robison
    • Amen!

    • I agree with your comments after listening to Elder Clark. Nothing is mentioned or hinted at for below the high school level. Almost everything he talked about is already in use, it will just be at a greater scale. And it did sound like it was aimed at international students. That said, as a homeschooler, I was grateful to have the opportunity to listen to the talk and to gain insight into what the church leaders are thinking and planning.

    • I thank you too!

  24. You may want to add to the list that Elder Clark indicated this would be grades 7-12 and Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees AND will be available wherever the LDS church is located. Yes they will integrate with local schools but it is going to be incredible regardless. He said they already did this successfully with pilot projects in the South Pacific.

    Also the LDS church just purchased Provo High. Will be exciting to see what happens with that!

  25. I doubt very seriously that the Church will be creating its own HS system outside of the local school districts. They will probably be supplementing the HS with online HS classes like Khan Acadamy, The Great Courses and online institute/seminary classes. “Oh your school doesn’t offer ESOL or it moved too fast for you? Try ours.” Oh You got lost in Algebra/ Calc/Differential equations? Try ours”. Now the BA/MA classes would likely be done through BYU and since they would be degree seeking would be much more likely to be strictly structured.

  26. How doni find out more how do i start using this program for my highschoolers? I also run a lds based private school. We just became a legal private school but have been lds based for several years and open for 10! I currently use latterdaylearning for history and science we pray at meals too anyway i really would love to know more

  27. As instructors, how can we get involved? Both my husband and I are teachers (primary and college professor) with Masters degrees and currently teach in Omaha, NE and Iowa.

    Sarah Ravenberg
  28. Does this new approach to education mean that we can have teaching with Church standards? Can the education from K to 12 prepare students for college, or will this new education be in line with all church colleges? I hope that this question is not confusing to others as it is to me.

  29. Instead of the higher level of education given priority that has already have been taught the worlds ways, I believe the education system should be focusing on the younger, kindergarten thru high school first. Many public school systems are corrupting the young with junk and that is carried over to higher education, if they make it that far. Most do not.

    Phillip J Elliott
  30. Holy christ amighty. Now you can teach myths to impressionable youth who will believe anything you say.

  31. As I have been looking for an affordable Masters program and wishing BYU had an online masters program, I am excited to hear this news. I am a full time mom, wife and professional and need a masters for my own edification and professional growth. I am so glad to hear this and hope the online masters programs will roll out soon. As for online high school the church already offers that. And for those conceded about “Priesthood Oversight” it is the same a the university Board or local School board oversight.” The Relief Society, Primary, Bishop Storehouse, church employment, are Underdirection of the Priesthood …. If that shakes you ….maybe you need a little personal time for spiritual contemplation about how the church has always been run.

  32. This may have already been addressed in the comments, but…….will this program replace current public schools classes if someone uses it (state graduation requirements fulfilled?) or just supplement public school classes (student will still need to attend public school, but can do this program in addition?)

  33. Wonderful! Education gives people freedom!!

  34. Hallelujah! Now I and my children won’t worry quite so much about the education of our posterity! And, now I think I know what my dear husband (recently deceased and an educator) may be working on in the spirit world. He had so many dreams of service to the Lord here before he died but perhaps, with the great work Elder Clark has announced, Durell can do so much more where he now is to help Heavenly Father’s work move forward!

  35. I hope this will extend to the elementary and junior high levels as well. The Gay agenda is being forced into our schools, and I have been concerned about my grandchildren.

    • The Gay agenda? Really?? H. Murray you are a disgusting individual. You need to learn a little tolerance and quit spreading your hate around for those you live and think differently than you.

  36. Thank you a thousand times over!! I’ve been waiting for this day to arrive. How do we get involved?

    Jennifer Coalwell
  37. i’ts a little too late for my kids as all but my last one are grown up with their own families. My last will be a senior this year. But this means that my grandchildren can take advantage of this.

  38. You’re all nuts. Seriously get a life outside of “The Church” bubble. That bubble is suffocating.

  39. I think this is a great idea! We need more stupidity, bigotry, and ignorance in this world. Forget the facts, forget science, go LDS!

    Daniel Morgenstern
  40. First lesson: The BITE Model

  41. I’m thrilled that this is happening. It is truly inspired. I have been so sad at the history and values that are no longer taught in today’s schools, as well as so many things are being taught in schools, in many areas of the country, that are not only false but also harmful. Hooray for this inspired decision! Also, people in outlying areas of the world will now have the advantages of a good education!

    Bonnie Marshall
  42. I work in public schools and they have a definite agenda that has become more pronounced every year and takes more time from academic instruction. It’s not Common Core that is altogether at fault, although it hasn’t helped, it’s the forced, socialist,political propaganda that can’t be avoided anymore, Tolerance is a big concept, but is not extended to religious belief systems. The above site comments should alert you to what schools teach about religious belief- that it equates to bigotry and ignorance. Don’t think it’s a choice between religious training and academic training; it’s more between genuine academic instruction and complete political indoctrination. After 10 years I see no evidence that anybody cares about academic progress anymore and I do. I’ve spent time, money and all my resources to help kids who are from very impoverished backgrounds and can see that it has worked for them, so no regrets, However I have to constantly fight the system to give them the skills they need.All kinds of marginal, time wasting exercises performed daily in classrooms to show compliance with the political agenda; I teach social studies despite the disapproval of superiors, yes, even I even teach cursive. I know many faithful teachers who pray for their students and work hard only to be overshadowed by lackluster weak teachers with classes where students never get a chance to succeed but no one cares as long as the teachers support the mindless groupthink meetings and required training in what I call ‘re-education camps’. Teachers are forced to attend these regularly during the school week..These soulless ‘analytical’ group sessions take academic time from classroom instruction and are hated by most teachers, but the company line is that we all grow and learn from them instead of waste valuable time listening to colleagues whine about their test scores and being censored for any show of autonomy or individuality. I love teaching and would love to get back to it. Maybe there is a way after all.

    • Thank you for being honest & articulate in your observations. These are the things that parents who are AWARE are concerned about. Thank you for sharing your thoughts & feelings. I truly appreciate it.

      • I teach in public schools as well and this is NOT what I experience. Just please be aware that this is not the position of all teachers.

    • You are a brave person! To stand up in the midst of the chaos and speak your mind. I applaud you!

      Sent from my iPhone


  43. This is awesome news! I knew this had to happen someday! Public schools are becoming harder and harder for our children. If they stand up for true principals, they are persecuted by their teachers and their grades are lowered. My daughter has experienced this first hand. We have chapels sitting empty during school hours during the week. Let’s fill them with our children learning truths, while gaining their education!

    Hallelujah! What a great day! I think I’ll get my Masters degree to celebrate!

    I’m so grateful for the great leadership in this church. ❤

    Miriam Stabler
  44. I am so thrilled…such a more complete way of education & I strongly believe it needs to be in the younger years on up! I am certified to teach & love this way (I have seen it at American Heritage in American Fork) and wish it could be to all! Thank you! Any way I can help roll this forward, I am willing and ready

  45. It is so comforting to know that we are led by a prophet who gets his direction from a loving Heavenly Father who is the head of this church. There are many members from all over the world who will greatly benefit from this program as well as here in the states. This is just one more way he is hastening the work for his purposes in preparing his people for the things to come. It saddens me to see so many people not seeing it for what it is. Before you knock this down pray about it for yourself to know it is of the lord. I for one am excited to see this unfold. It will give our children more opportunities to gain further education that they may not have had the opportunity otherwise.

    Kathy crawford
  46. Your claim is substantially without merit. I have long hoped for a “Pathways” style program for my Jr. and High School children. I have contacted church eduction representatives and made that request. I would even be willing to run it for FREE because it is that needed. I read this with much excitement. However, nothing of this sort was mentioned. This article is about a revision to the church’s current Seminary and Institute programs. I went to the article, read the article, and clicked on the provided links. DOCTORAL MASTERY CORE DOCUMENT and COME, FOLLOW ME. Those are the programs that will be offered world wide with greater access. One is predominantly for Seminary/Institute and the other for Sunday School. In the future, please try harder not to misrepresent information to suite your political agenda or simply increase traffic to your site. If I am wrong, I beg you to direct me to anything to support your claim of “secular education classes.” (Oh…and for the record, The Church already offers some secular schooling in areas around the world, but not in the states.)

  47. This is literally an answer to prayer. Years of noticeable decline in my children’s thirst for learning and ability to grasp concepts that have been taught. Family members experiencing similar issues across the board. Discussions with professional educators and the insight to school systems through my own personal pursuance of a teaching degree have been cause for a HAULT and stupor in the path of public education. Homeschool has appeared to be a one and only option, but through thorough and exhaustive searching for a program that is satisfactory in numerous areas, my search is still empty-handed. Meanwhile my children’s “bright” futures are highly compromised and in dim view. A true answer for a VERY sticky and convoluted issue. I can only continue to pray for all the youth of the church to be able to have access to the program. New and in the phase of “working-out-the-bugs” or NOT there is much to be said for the guidance and intention behind it. Definitely more than can be said of some programs which claim to be established and seemingly good alternatives to public school. I am very excited to see what the youth can achieve through such education. This opens up a whole bunch of new opportunities. Bright futures and a hope for our youth is in sight.

  48. Would like to see this extended all the way through preschool. The need is there. Many are now opting for home schooling because of serious issues that exists in public schools. This could provide assistance to those who homeschool and a welcomed option for those who wish they could but can’t.

  49. This is such fantastic news. We are absolutely led by inspired leaders.

  50. Funny that this is being extrapolated to eventually and possibly provide elementary and secondary curriculum for those of us privileged here in the United States. Clearly the church is trying to provide education where it is not readily available. This is not attempt to solve anyone’s differences with common core standards, etc. And some of you are you clamoring for curriculum from the church for preschool?

    The role of the church is not to spoonfeed and provide everything for everybody. This is clearly an effort of the church using educational resources and infrastructure to reach out to those who would not normally be provided a secondary and post-secondary education.

    I feel that a lot of these comments are way off-base and that some of the original hopes of the author in the blog post are are not what is intended, or eventually intended.

    • Agreed. I was thinking how wonderful it would be for children in other countries to graduate from high school etc. We are a worldwide church.

    • I think it’s clear that the message and intent absolutely includes the “privileged” countries. Perhaps you need to read it again. If you are unfamiliar with the very serious lack of quality in secondary education (high school) and lack of access to post-secondary education (college) that many many people in the United States experience, then you are very blessed indeed. As to elementary education – maybe, but I don’t really feel that that is as vital as young children are still quite closely under the protection and influence of their parents and much of the focus of quality in education is on the elementary level. It’s clear to me also that the Church is pointing out that education doesn’t happen in a vacuum and is trying to provide an opportunity for a more positive spiritual atmosphere as opposed to the negative worldly context that most students struggle within. Unless you live in a place like Utah or Idaho, school and church never cross paths at this point.

  51. Pingback: Mormon Church Sees Public Education Apocalypse and Prepares to Protect LDS Children - Red Gulls

  52. The time will come when secular education will become so tainted that we , as Church members and some outsiders, will be thankful for an option to the untruths infiltrating the minds of our children. Many do not understand that common-core will lead their sweet little innocents down a path of Socialism and eventually communism. We have just seen how our innocent uneducated, (?college students) have sucked up to Bernie Sanders’s Socialistic, Communistic Propaganda. I think we all need a course in Political Propaganda so they know what it is and the ideas it proposes. Read what Ezra Taft Benson had to say about Communism. He was a man way before his time, a Prophet and a Seer. He warned us about the coming dangers of Communism and its evil effects on us and our coming generations.

    Linda Acchione
    • The Church organization is neither a democracy nor does it use capitalist economics. You should read up on both systems of economics and systems of government. The prophets have been warning us of greed and corruption, of blindly following unscrupulous leaders. That is a different thing. Socialism and communism are methods of organizing communities of people on a large scale. Both are great on a theoretical level. It’s when you add fanatics, greed, and ambition that it takes a bad path.

  53. i’ve been making this suggestion on this and other sites for sometime now. Glad it is finally coming to fruition.

  54. The way I see it, we cannot trust the state to provide proper education for youth. We cannot trust them to provide the truths of life for our youth. The Church acknowledges that fact and is saying that we will teach our own youth, and any others that want it, the education of truth as we understand it. Brigham Young told Karl Meiser that he was not to teach even the multiplication tables without the Spirit of God. We are not going to do that across the country and around the world, provide education with a spiritual perspective so that our youth won’t be swayed by the philosophies of men, tossed by every wind of doctrine that blows around. I applaud this and hope to be a part of it as a teacher.

    • I have been using BYU’s high school curriculum and concurrently enrolled my son at BYU. Awesome alternative to public schools. So great that it will be rolled out worldwide!

      They do have Jr. High and High School classes. No diploma. Just FYI.

  55. Pingback: LDS Church to Independently Teach Both Religious and Secular Education Classes | lrolmstead03

  56. Although seemingly hard to believe,its happening for nothing is impossible with the Lord and i hope most will benefit out of it “CES” mostly myself and the world beyond, therefore this should be done with an eye single to the GLORY of the LORD (programme longly awaited for) returned LDS missionary Zimbabwe Bindura branch.

  57. I don’t see in his message where the church will be taking on high school education and certainly not elementary education. I read the original talk and I just don’t see it. I believe the message and shift in practice is very specifically addressing the church education system, meaning seminary and institute. I don’t see the church getting into K-12 education. I believe church leaders will continue to encourage members of the church to be educated and to make personal choices about the manner in which that education is obtained.

  58. This education should be offered to younger children that get a tainted view in a negative way before they ever reach the High School Level. Kids are dropping out of school way before High School. Divorced single mothers are out working because fathers refuse to support their children and the children are suffering from this corrupt public school school system. The priesthood can’t even handle searching out the poor, sick, and afflicted and widows that need food. How are they going to handle a world-wide educational endeavor?

  59. I have been praying so long for something like this. I am currently a licensed teacher and would love to be involved in this

  60. This is very exciting! I’m relieved and happy that more educational opportunities and support will be offered worldwide.

  61. Pingback: LDS Church Educational System will Bring Education to Members Around the World – World Religion News | Durrelliott

  62. i feel delighted for this great news

    Aniekpeno Aniekan Esiere
  63. The actual video doesn’t back up half the stuff in this article. Folks the LDS Church is not planning on providing high school in your community. Elder Clark’s whole announcement was about helping non-English speakers, the poor, and those in foreign countries take online classes already offered by BYU and other CES schools. Too bad the author is using this to attack common core, as this has nothing to do with it.

  64. As an administrator in a public school, I am a huge opponent of homeschooling, or any institution that overly shelters youth, keeping them separate from students who are different from them. When does it stop? When are they exposed to the real world? How are they expected to become responsible and compassionate citizens if they elect to be separate from people who believe differently than them? Not to mention teacher quality. Will they need to be certified? How will the quantity of teachers needed to provide the variety of courses needed to become a well rounded adult. Forget the NEA, this sounds further on the communist spectrum than they can ever be due to member votes and peer oversight. As an inactive Mormon who moved back to Utah less than 5 years ago, I’ve never felt so much like I’m part of a disenfranchised group. Kids learn best in diverse environments. This feels discriminatory in the same line as recent church legislation regarding children of same sex couples. I loved the church growing up. It breaks my heart to feel so judged and looked down on. At the same time, I can’t in good conscience be a part of a religion that preaches acceptance, but acts in a way that doesn’t support their preachings. This is incredibly sad for me to hear. Youth will now be educated away from my children, because they are non-members. I feel betrayed to see the church become more and more discriminating while further isolating itself from those of other beliefs.

    • Karen, beautifully said. Those who despise equality, civil rights, and science will continue in desperation to isolate themselves from the mainstream. However, this is a dwindling number of people and we can hopefully look forward to a better society in the future.

      • ROFLOL. I’ve homeschooled my children from kindergarten right into college. They get great grades in college.

        My children learn from their friends very easily. Fads, attitudes, different religions etc…

        Homeschooling is NOT sheltering them, just gives us a better ratio of teacher to child. When I can’t teach something, our homeschool co-ops pick up that subject, I pay a small fee and they learn from another parent or hired teacher.

        It’s a simple system that works. That is all it is.

        They have cap and gown graduation ceremonies once they have good enough test scores for college.

        They have proms, and many other dances.

        We don’t lock them in the house and make them sit at the kitchen table all day.

        Sent from my iPhone


    • Karen, I am an active member of the church and I don’t agree at all with the article. I listened to the talk from Kim Clark and the article is NOT founded in that talk. There is no intent of the Church to take over education – Diversity is important and loving others is important. All people on this earth are children of the same God…He created us to be diverse. The Lord said there must be opposition in all things. How can we possibly gain a strong testimony and practice avoiding temptation and repentance when we don’t avoid if we are completely shielded from what is opposite? I don’t mean to say we should try everything out there – but we must know the opposite exisits. We have been commanded to live in the world, not of the world. I have learned and had substantiated many truths in my life that did not come while I was in a church meeting or reading the scriptures – but were given to me by the spirit of the Lord.. My Dad always taught that truth can be found in many places in the world that God created – the Holy Ghost is there to help us distinguish it. Some members of the church hear the “same-sex” is not in alignment with God’s law and miss that Christ told us to love everyone – even those who sin – which includes everyone – which just gives evidence that we are all imperfect and if we are to truly love everyone – we need everyone -whether they be members of the church or not. I feel like I’m rambling a bit – happens when the heart gets involved – hope the message I intend is the one that is understood.

  65. Do you have permission to use one the church’s logos on your very political website?

  66. Looks like I’m slow to see this. Sorry. From what I know since last November I haven’t ever got the impression that this initiative was going to be something for HS students in the US. YSA’s will have more opportunities to get a degree from a BYU. Imagine a PEF type system but to provide educational opportunity worldwide. For example there is little to no good HS opportunities to kids in Popua New Guinea (sp?)- so this new initiative will seek to provide a good HS education for these students (who don’t have good alternatives. The church closed the Hamilton NZ HS they ran about 5-6 years ago, why? Because the public schools were sufficient (among other things). Ben Amerito the largest church owned HS in Mexico was turned into a MTC in 2013. Now faithful smart youth in the Philippines (and elsewhere) might be able to graduate with a degree from a BYU. First they learned English in Pathways, etc. So the church will provide an educational opportunity for members and a reasonable cost at whatever level they need- HS, vocation, pre-matriculation prep, English, bachelors, and masters degrees. This is all new and there are a few pilots going on- so let’s see what it ends up like.

  67. Amazing. Unfortunately there won’t be much left of my family by then. I am the head of a large family and can no longer defend it from the endless socialist onslaught coming from so many administrative entities. This a little sooner would have been a Godsend.

  68. > Elder Clark announced that the church is launching a new initiative in fall 2016 that will eventually offer secular and religious education courses, from Master’s degrees down to high school, **to people** wherever the church is organized.

    Given the content of his message, I believe this should read

    ” … from Master’s degrees down to high school, **to members** wherever the church is organized.”

  69. At last. I had a daughter born deaf and I pled with the Lord to provide for her a special primary. Eventually my prayers were answered. Today she teaches school. She teaches hearing students sign language. She has a great testimony.

    Now I pray that my children who have become teachers may teach in a program designed by the church. This will save our children.

    And I pray for a program designed by the church for adults. The closest thing to it is Wood Badge which I just had the pleasure of attending. However, it is lacking. I am 73 and on a fixed income. My generous daughter enrolled me in scouts and bought me two uniforms and paid all my expenses so I could have that great experience. There was no time to rest and twice I had to have blessings to get me through the experience. I went from camp on the last day to the emergency clinic. I am fine now and would do it all again in a heartbeat. However, this great program should be available to all without the expense of uniforms and joining scouting. It needs to be age friendly. All members of all ages and health issues need this tremendous experience. I know this is in the planning now and I want to help.

    Thank you.

    Mary Genevieve Butler Hilliard
  70. It’s about time!! This should have happened years ago. Sounds like it’s only for church members, though, and not for elementary. A shame. So many church classrooms sit empty all week, when they have the resources and supplies to service the communities around them, as so many other churches do, providing private schools so children don’t have to attend public schools, which have increasingly gotten worse. I hope they reconsider their decisions to include all ages and groups of children. That would be truly Christ-like.

  71. Absolutely!! This is soooo needed.

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