“According to data from the Annual Church Statistics given at the press conference, the number of students in Catholic schools has risen from nearly 55 million in 2008 to around 58 million in 2011.”
there were 53 million school-aged children in the US in 2008, i.e., 53 million children between 5 and 17 years of age. 23% of America is Catholic, so assuming Catholics have families the same size as everyone else, that makes for about 12 million Catholic children in the United States alone.
Now, I'll grant you, the United States is the third most populous country in the world. That means about 21% of the Catholic child population in the world resides here. But less than two million of those children are in Catholic schools - indeed, American Catholic schools tend not to have 100% Catholic student population in this country.
So, with over 1.2 billion Catholics worldwide, only 58 million school children are in Catholic schools? Really?
That means, world-wide, Catholic schools barely teach the total student population alive in the United States.
Yet people still insist that Catholic schools are critical to the transmission of the Faith? Really? 58 million kids out of 1.2 billion Catholics? And we're relying on Catholic schools to fix this. Hmmmm....