How Do Homeschooled Kids Graduate from High School

Homeschooled children can graduate from high school, attend college, join the military or enter the work force. Going to college or onto other paths that require a high school diploma isn't much of an issue these days because homeschooling is now accepted and HSLDA continues to work in all 50 states to ensure Americans have the right to homeschool. Without attending a traditional high school, many people unfamiliar with homeschooling ask how the process works.

If a child has been homeschooled, the parent issues the diploma and creates the transcript. This is shocking to those unfamiliar with homeschooling, but the parent has served as the teacher and is the person most knowledgeable of what the student has accomplished. Before the 1990's when homeschooling was less common this practice was resisted by many institutions. As homeschooling has become more common, transcripts and diplomas issued by parents became accepted. This is because HSLDA (Homeschooling Legal Defense Association) has consistently challenged practices that exclude homeschool students, and homeschool students have proven themselves again and again to be proficient and competent members of society.

When a homeschool student graduates from high school they graduate from homeschool and not public school. If the student has taken any external classes it is important to include them on the transcript. Homeschool students regularly attend elective courses at local high schools, and take classes at community college and tech centers. Some students are graded by others through homeschool co-op classes or have taken community center courses such as first aid. When these external courses are included in the transcript, the courses graded by the parent begin to carry more weight with those skeptical of a homeschool transcript.

When applying to college a student's homeschool transcript should include all of the classes taken at every institution. In addition official transcripts from the high school and other institutions should be included with the application. Transcripts may include a very traditional list of classes, but may also include unique classes taken by the student. For example, the homeschooled child who is a cooking master should have a culinary credit on the transcript. Any topic that the child has spent a significant amount of time learning should be included on the transcript. Other examples include cake decorating, computer networking, or mythology. 1 credit equals approximately 120 hours of work.

Because homeschooling is a non-traditional educational path, many homeschool students earn college credit through CLEP and AP exams. These credits should also be listed on the transcript. Here is an example high school transcript from my daughter who currently attends Michigan Technological University.

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