Homeschooling High School - Core Studies, Graduation Requirements and More

Summary:  Tips from a veteran homeschool mom for planning and getting started with homeschooling high school.  What are core studies?  Are there homeschool graduation requirements?  Choosing your homeschool high school curriculum.  What about college? Making homeschool transcripts and more.

Are you considering homeschooling your teen?  Homeschooling high school is really not that hard.  But you have heard that before....and is it really true?

Are  you nervous about continuing to homeschool all the way through high school?  I was, when contemplating it during the middle school years...

High School was my favorite time, of all of our homeschooling years. 

Yes, it was much more complicated than the earlier years.  

But having my daughter at home meant that she her individual educational needs could be met. 

She also had more time to try out new activities and develop her interests, and go to youth conferences, etc.  

And watching her blossom and grow, during the teen years... priceless! 

Today I'd like to share how I became confident as a mom who was homeschooling her teen.  

There were key pieces of information that were important to me for my high school planning....And once I got them under my belt, my confidence grew....a lot.

Then I was ready to take on high school with confidence.  

First of all, let's talk start with assigning high school credits.

1.  Assigning High School Credit

It is not that hard to assign high school credit.  Here are 3 ways to do just that.

I call them ...................1.  the Textbook method
                                         2.  the Hours method
                                         3.  the Mastery method

The textbook method is the traditional way.  

The hours method involves keeping track of the amount of time spent in learning activities.  

The mastery method refers to assigning credit based on demonstrated mastery of a subject or a skill. That could be video making, playing an instrument, etc.

We did a lot of different kinds of learning, and all of it counted!  It is also included in my book, mentioned below.

2. What About Core Studies?

Core Studies are just the basic high school courses in math, English, social studies, science and foreign language.  

I have a post on our favorite frugal homeschool high school curriculum for each of these core studies areas, if you are interested.

3. Are There Homeschool Graduation Requirements?

What your choose for core studies is most often up to the individual homeschool family.  You do not need to follow the public school graduation requirements, only those laid out in your state's homeschool law.  

Most states do not lay out requirements for a homeschool diploma. It is usually left to the homeschool family to decide when to graduate their teen.  

So in most states, you can shape your teen's high school years around their needs, depending where they will be heading.

4.  What About College?

If your teens might be going to college, then you will want them to do the studies that are outlined by the colleges, ie, the college entrance requirements.  

Checking likely college websites is essential for college bound teens. I have much more on that in my book, laying out typical requirements for a different kinds of colleges, mentioned below.  

Community College - If your teen is headed to community college, it is advisable to just check in with admissions there.  

In our state of WA, the incoming students just take an entrance test, which evaluates their math and English skills.  

It is usually SO much less complicated compared than going into a 4 year college, and usually the SAT/ACT is not needed.

AGAIN - You do not have to follow the public school graduation requirements....those are for public school kids!

5.  High School Electives and Interests

The beauty of homeschooling high school is that you get to build and nurture your teen's interests and help them to discover their strengths.  

Even with preparing for college, my teen had lots of time to do electives and try out her interests in activities.

Now that we finished talking about credits, core studies and a bit about electives, let's talk transcripts. 

6.  Making your High School Transcripts

Transcripts are just a document that lists all of the courses that your student took, with grades, a place to put their SAT or ACT scores, with identifying information on it.  More on transcripts can be found on my blog.

My book below also has a full chapter on how to put your transcripts together, with lots of high school planning forms to make your planning easier.  Below is the book and the table of contents.

Kindle and Paperback are On Amazon

For more information: Homeschooling High School with College in Mind. 

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope that this post will help you in your important work with your teens,

Thanks for stopping by BJ's Homeschool,


Betsy is mom to her now college grad whom she homeschooled from preschool.  She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early yearshigh school & college and wrote a new book on high school..   She offers free homeschool help and messages at BJ's Consulting

Want to stay in touch?  

Copyright, Revised 2021
Revised, All Rights Reserved


  1. My son is Jr in high school but wanted homeschooling during his Sr. Can that be possible?

    1. Yes, homeschooling is legal in all 50 states of the US. The first thing you would want to do would be to find out the homeschool regulations in your state. The site at has a list of that for each state. Then the next step would be to begin your planning. I have a post on that here - I encourage you to browse around my blog, and look at some of the articles under High School/College if you like. Then feel free to send me a facebook message @ BJ's Homeschool facebook page. You have already done the hardest thing - You took the initiative to ask! I would be happy to chat with you further on my page just click the pic of my site that says - "Like BJ's Facebook" Nice to meet you!

  2. Great read!!! keep sharing such a great blog,blog like this will help every homeschooler in homeschooling children in the best possible way. When I started my homeschooling, blogs like these have helped me.
    Now my elder son is in online high school and younger son is in middle school and he is been homeschooled by us.


Get more Updates

* indicates required
First Name
Email Address *