In north-west England numbers were 92% up on the previous two-year average, figures from 153 councils show.
Some parents and councils – including in former hotspot Bolton – say the increase is down to “Covid anxiety”.The Department for Education says it supports home-educating parents and plans to launch a registration system.
‘I felt he was starting to regress’
Coronavirus lockdowns meant that school buildings were closed to most pupils from the end of March to September last year.
But increasing numbers of parents have switched to home-educating their children, removing them from the school register and notifying the local council.
More than 40,000 pupils were formally taken out of school in the UK between September 2020 and April 2021, compared with an average of 23,000 over the previous two years.
As of January 2021, there were 8.9 million pupils attending school in England, including state and independent schools.
In June, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said he was “absolutely committed” to a register of home-educated children, and said its introduction was “imminent”.
Parents told the BBC that health fears and worries that their children’s learning would suffer had led them to home-educating.