In this “Looking Back” series, I’ve been doing just that – looking back on my homeschool experience and sharing my tips or suggestions for high school. However, I never dual enrolled. Therefore, this post is a bit different than usual. You see, up until now, every post has suggested styles, curricula, and schedules that I have used myself.
Well, in this Looking Back post, I’m talking about something I wish I would have done – that is, dual enrollment. As a homeschooled teen, have you considered dual enrolling at your local community college?
I wish I would have taken advantage of the CAVIAT program at our local community college. Basically, it’s a program that allows eleventh and twelfth graders to take college classes for free tuition. Students have to place and test into the program, but once they are in, it’s free.
It’s not even like I didn’t know about the program at that time. Several of my friends dual enrolled, so I definitely heard a lot about their college class experience. I suppose I just didn’t realize that I could dual enroll. It never dawned on me to even look into dual enrolling for myself. Thus, high school came and went and I did not dual enroll.
However, now that I’m graduated and have learned much more about dual enrollment through my job, I think it is a fantastic opportunity and one that every homeschooled teen should look into. You might not have a program like CAVIAT at your college, but even so, dual enrolling is definitely worth checking out.
As homeschoolers, we often don’t have the resources to complete labs for science courses like Biology and Chemistry. However, if you dual enroll in these courses, you’ll definitely have the opportunity to experience these labs.
You’ve heard the phrase “kill two birds with one stone,” right? Well, that’s exactly what you’ll be doing with dual enrollment. Now, you’ll have to check with your state to ensure this, but most states allow dual enrollment credit to count for both high school and college. Now that’s the way to get your degree sooner!
Okay, so there is a bit of a social aspect involved as well. After all, as homeschoolers, we have to actively pursue friendships and activities that keep us involved with other people. Still, I think we often just associate with “people like us” – other homeschoolers. While this isn’t necessarily bad, some socializing with public-schoolers, adults, younger children, and people from all stages of life can be a fantastic experience. People are obviously still people, regardless if they were homeschooled or not. And that is the exact kind of experience you have when you dual enroll. More likely than not, everyone will be older, but that is not a bad thing. Embrace it, rather than just learning how to cope with peers.
So that is my take on dual enrolling. I hope this was helpful, and if you have any questions, feel free to Ask A Homeschooler!