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Awarding Achievement
Volume 116, Program 20
6/21/2013

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What does your homeschooled student have to do to earn a diploma? The answer might vary more than you realized! Learn more, today on Home School Heartbeat with Mike Smith and HSLDA Special Needs Consultant Faith Berens.

Mike Smith:
Faith, can you give some guidelines on how homeschooling parents can award a high school diploma to their struggling learner?

Faith Berens:
Well, a diploma certifies that the student named on the diploma has successfully completed a course of study. In most states, parents, as the administrators of their homeschools, design this course of study and set forth the high school graduation requirements, based on their child’s needs and capabilities, as well as realistic future goals. And then, once the student satisfactorily meets those requirements, the diploma is awarded.

But there are different types of diplomas. Some families whose children have more severe cognitive delays, or Down Syndrome or autism, may choose to award an alternative diploma, such as a special education diploma, a certificate of completion, or a certificate of high school achievement. These alternative diplomas would be most suitable in cases where an individual will more than likely either always be living with someone, or will be partially independent.

But for most of our students, we should aim at awarding a general college preparatory diploma, or at least a basic academic diploma, which would include 20 to 22 high school credits.

Mike: Well, Faith, this information this week has been so helpful! Thanks for sharing these guidelines with our listeners. And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.


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