What About High School Transcripts and Diplomas?

If you have the privilege of homeschooling a high school student, you’ve probably wondered about transcripts and diplomas, particularly if your child is college-bound.

Hope: Our question for today is regarding high school transcripts. You guys have asked us “I don’t know how to classify what schoolwork my child has done this year, how to classify that onto the transcript!” and “I don’t know how to make a transcript!” What can you tell us about that?

Pearl: Sure. So we get that question a lot and our favorite answer is to go to HSLDA, which is the Home School Legal Defense Association. They have compiled all the resources to know exactly what you need to do for transcripts, for diplomas, for everything pretty much related to home schooling. They have a sample transcripts. They have transcripts that you can edit. Basically, what a transcript is, is a list of every subject your child has studied for the year, how many credits’ worth of study that was, and what their GPA was on that course. They have a helpful guide for determining GPA. If you go to our handbooks, you can see a list of every subject that’s covered and how many credits it would be if you use each item to the maximum potential.

So you would get, say, 2 credits in science for doing Integrated Physics and Chemistry. You could also get additional credits in science by doing all the related resources, too– Chemistry 101 or Physics 101— but you don’t need to. You will look at that list in our handbook and say, “Okay. Here’s the ones where I’ve earned the full credits. On these ones maybe I didn’t, maybe I customized them out.” Maybe you added music. You can customize it to be exactly what your child has done in school for the year.

Hope: If you want to know what qualifies as a credit go to our curriculum guide and it will tell you what credits your child will learn what for what products, and if you want to know how to take that information and actually make a transcript go to HSLDA and they will walk you through that process.

One follow-up question is, “Once I complete 12th grade do I receive a diploma from you?”

Pearl: The answer is no, because a diploma can only be issued by a teacher or by a school. We are not a teacher or a school, but your parents, or you as the parent, can issue the diploma whenever they feel that you have completed high school. So it’s up to whoever does the teaching to sign off on a certificate and say they’ve completed high school. Again, there are sample diplomas so you can see exactly what one should look like at HSLDA.