Can Kids in Homeschool Receive a Diploma?
One very common homeschool myth is the one regarding high school diplomas. It is often assumed that because homeschoolers are not attending a traditional school setting, they won't be able to receive a high school diploma. This simply isn't true.
There are actually a variety of ways for a child in homeschool to receive a diploma. If the parent is doing some or all of the teaching, the parent will need to keep transcripts, as well as issue the diploma. Blank diplomas can be purchased for this purpose from many locations, including the HSLDA.
Another way a homeschooled teen can receive a high school diploma is through a virtual high school program or even through a high school correspondence course. These programs must be completed and paid for (where pay is applicable) before the diploma will be issued.
Sometimes homeschooled children take classes in local community colleges, public schools, homeschool co-ops, or other schools or organizations. If this is the case, the parents will need to be sure these credits are kept track of by records from those schools.
If the schools are attended full time (or sometimes even part time), the schools will generally keep track of credits and issue them. Some may even issue a diploma. However, since homeschool is the parent's responsibility, the parent should always be aware of whether the schools will do this or not. If not, the parent is responsible for making sure the child gets the diploma and transcripts.
Oftentimes, even the schools who don't issue a diploma will still give out credits. If the goal for the child taking outside classes is to earn college and high school credits, parents need to be sure the school being used awards the type of credits the child will need for the desired college path and also be sure they will be giving out some form of documentation for record-keeping purposes.
If none of the above scenarios are taken, the child can opt to earn a GED instead by taking classes and a test. However, when choosing this route, parents should keep in mind that a GED is sometimes looked at as something that was resorted to out of failure to receive a diploma.
The above scenarios are only some of the ways in which a homeschooled teen can receive a high school diploma. Anyone considering homeschool through high school should do the research and decide which method will fit their child and family the best. A good place to start researching homeschool is the HSLDA.
Based on the variety of options a homeschooling child has to receive a high school diploma, I believe it's pretty fair to say that this myth is just that; a myth. A homeschooled child can definitely receive a diploma.
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