In Mississippi, there are no graduation requirements for homeschoolers. That’s right! You decide if they have completed enough subjects, and which subjects to complete in order to graduate. It is recommended that you keep a transcript of what you taught them or what they studied. If you’d rather just have someone else do it for you, FastTranscripts.com will make one for $5 with all the appropriate calculations and it looks very nice.
You could reference what the state requires for public school graduation if you choose, but if your child is going on to college, the smarter outlook is what colleges require for admission. Plan your high school years around that and you will be in better shape for college acceptance. You will need to go to various colleges that your child may be interested in attending and look up their admissions requirements. Make a summary of what they each require and also look at potential majors for your child. Their junior and senior years are an opportunity to take some dual enrollment classes to knock out some of those requirements.
You can create or get someone to create a nice diploma for your student. All you really need is a template that you can edit. There are plenty of services out there that will create and print an official looking diploma to frame or keep if you do not choose to make your own.
Is a Parent-Issued Diploma Good Enough?
In short, absolutely! Parent education programs have equal standing as public and private school programs of education. A diploma simply indicates that a person has completed a program of study and has met all requirements for that program of study. As homeschooling families, we obviously set the “standards” in most cases. Because of this, a parent-issued high school diploma is a perfectly acceptable way to graduate your child. Not only are they acceptable, but they’re also legally binding. This is wonderful news for homeschoolers because it means that a parent-issued diploma is enough to qualify a student to apply for federal financial aid.
What Should We Include on a Homeschool Diploma?
In the majority of cases, the “administrator” of the home education program will be the parent(s). Therefore, parents need to be the ones signing the official diploma. But what should go on that diploma?
- Your homeschool name (this would be the “institution” issuing the diploma)
- Your student’s name
- The city and state in which the student graduated
- The date the diploma was issued
- Some type of language that indicates that the student has been issued a high school diploma
- At least one signature from an “administrator” (parent)
How to Create a Homeschool High School Diploma
When you’re ready to create the actual diploma, there are plenty of diploma websites online that offer the ability to use a template you can fill in with your personal information. You will probably want to print it out on specialty paper and mount it in a diploma holder or frame.
Overall, your student’s diploma will signify the completion of your home education program as prescribed by you. It is critical that you include the fact that it’s a high school diploma (as opposed to a “certificate” or random other types of diploma) for the times your student will need to show a copy of the diploma. Frankly, your student can create his or her own diploma. However, that’s probably something best left to the parents to do – after all, you’ll probably want to present your student with his or her diploma in a ceremonious way!