How to Graduate Early as a High School Homeschooler
Most high school learners usually dream of graduating early. Many students can complete or graduate early from high school and start their college degrees much earlier than most of their school peers. By doing so, these early school graduates can also complete their university or college studies much earlier than is normal. The trick is motivating learners to pursue the things they love and showing students that they are capable of doing a lot of things they think they might not be able to do. By building their confidence, you will find your students rise to the challenge and gain a significant advantage over their high school peers.
In this article, we explore the benefits of graduating early, ways of graduating early, and early graduation requirements for homeschoolers.
What are the Benefits of Graduating Early to a Homeschooler
Accelerated graduation is common among learners who intend to begin their college or university education early, particularly if they intend to pursue careers that need extended years of learning. For instance, in case your teenager has an interest in law or medical careers, starting their university or college education can be extremely valuable.
Dual enrollment is one of the most popular choices for faster graduation.
Dual enrollment provides learners with an opportunity to obtain homeschooling high school credits and college credits simultaneously.
Nevertheless, the goal is one, that is, building both high school credit and college credit during years of high school.
Here are the major advantages of accelerated graduation:
1. Starting Your College Career Early
Not all rewarding careers need college degrees. Most trades, such as construction workers, plumbers, and electricians, begin with on-the-job apprenticeships as well as other kinds of training. Nevertheless, U.S. News & World Report explains, each graduate requires a plan for life after school, whether they complete it in four years or earlier.
School counselors know that the situation of every learner is unique, and in most instances, the choice to pursue early graduation relates to the financial situation of their family.
One aspect that school counselors consider crucial for learners who want to graduate early is the maturity level. Taking on real-world responsibilities needs both a post-graduation plan as well as the will and dedication to stick with the plan through difficult times.
2. Start Your College Career Early
Most high school learners who opt to graduate early do so in order to pursue their post-high school education at a learning institution that allows them to register midyear or even a year earlier. Getting a jump-start on attaining a college degree enables learners to early than their classmates. Enrolling early in colleges is advantageous to athletes who intend to start their training in their sport at the college level early. Nevertheless, for most learners who join college ahead of their high school classmates, the major advantage is the capability to lower the cost of higher education by applying a similar approach to college, obtaining an undergraduate degree in less than four years.
3. Challenge Yourself Academically
The one-size-fits-all syllabus of most high school programs does not engage advanced learners and make the best utilization of time that they spend in their classrooms. The major advantage of graduating from school early for the learners is the chance to study materials and topics that would assist them in progressing quicker in their areas of choice. Universities and colleges provide a comprehensive curriculum that learners can utilize in crafting common courses, enabling them to improve their learning skills and also kindle the joy that they feel regarding starting their careers.
4. Gain Independence
The maturity needed for chasing early graduation is also the major reason for wanting to exit faster. Nevertheless, high schools tend to be rigidly structured educational environments since most high school learners aren’t yet able to take full responsibility for their own learning, let alone the duties that come with life after high school. For most learners, gaining the freedom to make decisions for themselves is the major advantage of graduating high school early.
5. Stand Out to Colleges
Learners who test out of high school courses and complete ahead of schedule many make an impression on potential employers and college recruiters. Together with high scores and high grade-point on the ACT and/or SAT exams, the effort needed to finish their high school requirements in less than four years attracts the attention of college recruiters. Additionally, the New England Board of Higher Education stipulates that learners who entered college early tended to be high achievers who outperformed the general learner population: the GPA of early entrants averaged 3.6 in their freshman year, compared with 2.9 for all learners, based on the 2017 data.
Tips on Graduating Early as a Homeschooling Student
There are various options available to assist your teenager is graduating from high school early than usual. Also, you will first require to make sure that a fast-tracked learning would work well for them with a rigorous pace and heavy course load.
Popular paths for graduating earlier from high school include dual enrollment, testing-for-credit, taking General Educational Development tests, using virtual accelerated homeschool curriculum program, taking many credits, and year-round homeschooling.
For individuals who are not familiar with the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), it’s a service by the College Board for learners to obtain equivalent credit for a college program by excelling in an examination.
Additionally, General Educational Development testing is the best way of skipping years of high school work. Rather, your learner must pass four tests: Science, Social Studies, Math, and Language Arts. In case your learners utilize authorized GED preparation resources, then they can ensure that they understand the content well and feel confident as they take their examinations. Also, this can be a good choice for homeschool students who didn’t utilize accredited curriculums.
Requirements for Graduating Early from High School
You require to find out whether there are state regulations for any legal requirements that might affect your homeschooler from graduating from high school early. Although your teenager attains equivalent homeschool credits required for graduation as per your state, these laws might have different homeschooling learners’ specifications.
It is, therefore, crucial to double-check the guidelines of your state!
Some of the things to consider about homeschooling requirements include;
- Standardized testing laws
- Required documentation
- Regulations for early graduation
- Compulsory attendance age
- Attendance regulations
- Annual assessments
How do you graduate if you are homeschooled?
If your teenagers are homeschooled, they may be able to get a GED or high school diploma in two ways:
1. Properly accredited private schools
They offer an alternative to the traditional academic program. Students will either take exams (which usually include both essay and multiple-choice sections) or complete specific courses. These schools generally do not require that your child attend classes full time, but it is common for students who attend this type of school to spend from 15 hours up to 30 hours per week in the classroom. They will normally take no more than five courses at one time, so there is plenty of free time available if you wish to pursue other interests like a part-time job or volunteering opportunities. This gives much more flexibility than the other method of obtaining a GED or high school diploma.
2. Most private and public high schools
They offer a homeschooling program for students at least 16 years old who are interested in getting their diplomas. These programs will work with you to design a curriculum that meets graduation requirements, and will also help your child create his own learning schedule. As with most public-school programs, they do require full-time attendance during the day on weekdays, but many students take advantage of early morning or late afternoon classes to accommodate family needs.
There may be some limitations on what classes your child can take if he is enrolled in an accredited non-public school or online high school so check with the local office before enrolling. Also, check whether the school or county office will give credit for the classes completed or whether your child will have to retake them. Some schools are willing to offer a GED preparation class and accept the score as an alternative, but this is not something they all do. Costs vary greatly, so shop around before choosing where to enroll.
3. Properly accredited online high schools
offer a third option. Students complete their classes by logging in to the program at set times of the day and can take up to seven courses simultaneously with no time requirements. They will receive instruction from an instructor who acts as their personal tutor until all assignments have been submitted for grading. Because these schools are properly accredited (which means they meet state standards and therefore qualify students for federal aid), your child may be able to obtain a copy of his school transcripts that will allow him to graduate even if he does not finish the GED or homeschooling requirement. The downside is this option costs more than either the non-public or public-school programs since there are few if any grants available for homeschooling these days.
If you are interested in homeschooling, contact your local office of education to find out what they will accept as proof of graduation and how it will transfer. You may also want to talk to other parents who have chosen this route for their teenagers and ask them about their experiences. Some students will need a transcript if you plan on attending college or technical school, so make sure that is completed either by the time he graduates or within six months before his anticipated start date at school.
Can homeschool diplomas be used to obtain employment?
Yes! With few exceptions, most employers accept homeschooled students just as they would those who attended public or private schools. Your diploma alone should not be a barrier to obtaining gainful employment after high school graduation. However, some companies do ask that candidates provide proof of attendance or completion from an accredited institution (such as a high school diploma).
The General Education Development (G.E.D.) is an alternative to the high school diploma that you might want to consider if your college or job requires one. The GED is accepted by most colleges and employers, and it can be taken in high school or at any other time after graduation from homeschooling. It’s available free of charge online through Florida Virtual School. You may also take advantage of the non-tested program offered by the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) at almost every public library which includes classes on writing skills, using computers, math concepts, etc., all needed for successful completion of this program! Your local library can give you more information about these classes and help you register for them.
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