Some people believe that their homeschooled high school student will not be considered graduated unless they get a diploma. In addition, many worry that their homeschooled high school student will not have equal opportunities if they do not receive a diploma. This is far from the truth but let’s look at some of the implications and options regarding homeschool high school diplomas
A diploma is an indication that the student has successfully fulfilled the requirements to graduate from high school. As the parent of a homeschooled student you are the one who determines if the work the student did was enough to qualify for graduation. If your student completes a high school course of study satisfactorily, then he or she deserves a diploma.
Where to get a homeschool high school diploma
Know that the public school system is not required to issue your homeschooled student a diploma, even if he has finished every requirement that the public school system requires. So if the local school board will not issue a diploma, where do you get one? Some families homeschool high school in close association with a private school, and often they will issue a diploma.
If you homeschool high school in association with a cover school, or umbrella school, or belong to a group that will issue diplomas, then the choice is easy as to where to get the diploma. Examples of such groups might be your local homeschool association, religious or secular homeschooling organizations, or organizations who are homeschool advocates.
If you do not have association with a group that you can get the diploma from, do not despair. There are companies online that you can purchase a high quality diploma from. These range from diploma blanks, in which you fill in all the required information, to fully printed color diplomas individually printed according to information you specify.
What should be included in a homeschool high school diploma?
There are five pieces of information that are important to include on a homeschool high school diploma.
The student’s full, formal name.
The state in which you live at the time of the student’s graduation.
What the diploma is for. Make sure that you include the information that the diploma is being issued for completion of a course of high school study.
The date that the diploma is issued.
Signature(s) of people who can attest to the student’s completion of the course of study. This will generally be the parent or parents, but might also include the administrator of a cover school or co-op, if applicable.
Is a homeschool high school diploma enough?
Many states have passed legislation that gives a homeschool high school diploma equal weight as a diploma issued by a public or private school. Still, some opportunities post high school might not consider a diploma enough. So should your student get a GED instead?
A GED is not equal to a diploma, and in some instances, gives indication to the employer or university that the student did not have the perseverance or the ability to complete traditional high school requirements. In fact, for the military, a homeschool high school diploma student will be considered in a higher recruiting category than a GED student, so the GED student is at a disadvantage.
In addition to a diploma, your student should have a complete transcript of their high school years. The transcript should include academic courses completed as well as service, volunteer opportunities, and job experience. Information regarding extracurricular activities such as church participation, leadership opportunities, choir, art, and theater experiences can also be included on the transcript. A portfolio with examples of the student’s writing abilities, or artistic abilities will also be a plus.
Your homeschool high school graduate will be ready to face the challenges that come her way after graduation if she is armed with a good education, a complete transcript, perhaps a portfolio, and a professional quality homeschool high school diploma.