The high school years of homeschooling are the "Harvest Years", and I encourage all to finish the race. Don't be intimidated by the expectations regarding transcripts and diplomas or upper level courses. These are truly simple tasks to accomplish when necessary. Don't cheat yourself and your children out of the rewards and benefits and blessings of the final season of home discipleship that high school provides, because you are discouraged by fulfilling certain requirements. This is a precious opportunity to guide and keep the heart of your teen as you eventually pass the baton to that young adult.
There are numerous websites and folks that are dedicated to homeschooling high school. Some offer more detailed ideas that can be intimidating and others make it quite simple. Pick your style. Me... I'm all about easy peasy. I just find that if I set the goal too grandiose, I often get defeated. And I've seen it happen over and over to others ahead of me. I'm all about the least stressful way to get the job done. So browse the websites below and find your comfort zone. There are lots of tips and how-to's that will be helpful.
** NOTE: See the CURRICULUM tab for high school teaching resources and ideas.
Below are a few resources to help with your journey.
A transcript is simply a chronological record of the classes your student completed, with the grade listed.
One of the simplest ways to create a transcript is found here:
Teascript - After creating an initial account, each year (or semester) go to the website below and enter the classes and grades for that year. The site stores the info. for you, and you can add to it as your student progresses through high school or edit it along the way. The credits and GPA are automatically calculated and adjusted for you as you enter information. You can then print out a pdf version for your use.
I believe it is free for the 9th and 10th grade years, and $5 for 11th and 12th grade years. Quite the bargain!
Transcript Webinar - Lee Binz, The Home Scholar, offers tips and suggestions for transcripts. Caution... while Lee Binz offers a lot of information, (and I appreciate what she has available), much of the info. leads to the option of a separate service, available for a fee. I'm not saying this is wrong, but I will say that it is not necessary. Still, I include her link because she is one of the common voices on homeschooling high school, and as long as you keep it in perspective, there is info. to glean. Also, if you google or search the internet, you can find lots of info. on homeschooling high school that is free of charge.
HSLDA on transcripts - For those who want to make their own transcripts, this is a good explanation on how to go about it. They also have samples, etc. You can find more info. from their high school page listed below.
A high school diploma is simply a document issued to a student that states they have completed a course of study that satisfies graduation requirements. Since homeschooling parents are in charge of setting and/or meeting those requirements, it is fitting that we should issue the diploma. I encourage you to resist the mindset that says you must seek a diploma from an outside source. This costs extra money, and from all I have seen, it is unnecessary.
What about an "accredited" diploma? - Folks should know that many public high schools are NOT accredited! Neither are many private schools. The parent issued diploma for a homeschool student is equivalent to many diplomas issued to students from a wide variety of educational backgrounds. We don't need to explain or apologize for this document. Instead we need to expect others, both colleges and employers, to recognize this fact as well, and politely educate them when given the opportunity. If homeschoolers seek accreditation, when it is not necessary, we send a message that we "need" accreditation, when that is not the case.
You can read more about diplomas at the site below:
HSLDA - LOTS of questions answered here!
~ A few samples from their website:
Do I need an accredited diploma?
The quick answer is, “No.” However, there are certain schools and organizations that have received accreditation from an accrediting body and their diplomas are generally considered to be accredited. In order to obtain an accredited diploma, a student must complete graduation requirements from a school—whether it be correspondence or on campus—that is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization. Public high schools are not necessarily accredited. Therefore, the diplomas they issue would not be accredited either. However, colleges and universities generally recognize these public high school diplomas as if they were issued by accredited organizations.
Must the student comply with state or school district requirements in order to receive a diploma?
No.* It is up to each parent to decide what the student must do in order to receive a diploma. While each state has slightly different requirements for graduation for its public high schools, parents are not required to meet the same requirements that are imposed on public school students. For example, you may hear that 20 “credits” are required for graduation. While public schools may require students to complete 20 credits before being allowed to graduate, and may require that certain subjects be taken, homeschool parents are under no duty to imitate the public schools or adopt their standards.
Should I skip the diploma and have my student take the GED test instead?
A GED is a substitute for a diploma; it is not a diploma. A person can obtain a GED without ever having spent a day of his life in school. Many colleges and employers will treat a GED about the same as they would a diploma. However, if a student has a GED, some colleges and employers may assume the student did not have what it takes to finish high school. If your student successfully completed a program of secondary education, he deserves a diploma to prove it. (emphasis mine)
GENERAL HIGH SCHOOL INFO. (grading, diplomas, etc.)
HSLDA Homeschool Thru High School - Loads of help and advice for homeschooling high school. Sign up for their newsletter to receive regular tips and encouragement from these veteran homeschoolers.
- Faith Walking Through High School - By Barb Shelton
- 7 Sisters Homeschool - A group of Christian, "retired" homeschool moms sharing lots of helps and resources for college prep and high school courses and more.
- Homeschool Articles - By Barb Shelton Scroll down the page to get to the High School section of articles.
- High School Helps - By Barb Shelton
Misc. High School/College Prep Resources
- Answers in Genesis - Excellent resource for dvds and other materials that refute evolution. Dvds are a great way to inform high schoolers on this subject or to prepare for college atmosphere.
- Lee Binz, The Home Scholar - A website dedicated to all things Homeschool High School, by veteran homeschooler Lee Binz. While her original specialty was finding scholarships for homeschoolers, Lee now offers advice and help for almost every topic on homeschooling through high school. Do be aware that many of her resources involve a fee.
- College Plus! - From their website... CollegePlus! is a revolutionary Christian based distance learning program helping students earn their fully accredited bachelor’s degree in a fraction of the time and cost of the traditional university system. CollegePlus! is an innovative blend of study skills courses, CLEP and other exams, on campus courses, and online classes with one-on-one coaching to bring a student's long-term vision and academics together in harmony. You may contact our local rep., Danny Craig at firstname.lastname@example.org or 509-944-0171 .
- CLEP Exams - Earn college credits by testing out of college courses with CLEP
- College Board - A website dedicated to assisting high schoolers with the preparation and application for college or university.
- Guide to Learning College Credit in High School - These resources can also be used post high school graduation, to earn distance learning college credit.
- Indoctrinate U - Great dvd documentary that exposes the bias in our colleges and universities, against conservative thinking and beliefs. Very engaging and informative. A must see for all parents (and students) deciding on a college education. (Not from a particularly "Christian" view.)
- Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed - DVD documentary, with Ben Stein, again exposing the incredible bias against conservative or Judeo-Christian beliefs in our colleges and universities. (Again, not from a particularly "Christian" view.)