We have our first homeschool graduate coming this spring. I am so excited for him. One thing I get asked all the time is about graduation. Homeschooling high school is mystifying for many. So I created a sort of checklist of ideas for those last minute things you might want to do for your graduate. Keep in mind this is an extensive list and we will not do all of them so choose what works best for your family!
Homeschool Graduation Checklist
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- Homeschool Diploma - In the state of NJ the parents issue the diploma. We have ours already to go.
- Cap and Gown - We will be ordering a black set.
- Senior Pictures - I plan on taking the bulk of these myself but we may go ahead and do a traditional headshot at our local target. I have seen the trend to go to a nice location with several outfit changes and do a whole session - that is something I can do myself with my camera so I plan to do it that way. If I didn't have a camera I would hire a professional.
- Announcements/Invitations - we will be doing some sort of mail out and it will feature a picture from our session.
- Graduation Party - This can be as big or as little as you like. We are hoping to have a nice sized party with a theme (per the graduates request!)
- Ceremony - Our son asked to opt out of a ceremony. Two options for us were to do one with our local homeschool group that offers it or to have a ceremony at home (like we did with kindergarten.
- Class Ring - We will probably make this our gift to our graduate. You can order them on Walmart. I know it was a huge deal when I was a senior to get mine and I still have it.
- Senior Trip - We are hoping to take a mini-trip either with just the graduate or the whole family. Haven't determined what exactly yet but we want something special for him.
Everything above is more of the celebration aspect but maybe your wondering about HOW to graduate your child.
- Transcript - we will be using HSLDA to do a completed transcript. (This is the final record of what is finished.)
- College Applications - we did not have to do those for our student as he is taking a year off to work then plans to attend some sort of trade program. We would have submitted those in the fall of senior year.
- End of Year Testing - We have a few final exams to finish
- SAT/ACT - Last chance to improve those scores is Spring of senior year
- Senior Thesis/ Large Final Projects - These should be something that is being finished up about springtime for the graduate.
- Goals Next Steps - The graduate should have some sort of plan for the future. It took some time to figure out where our son was headed but we laid out our family guidelines and expectationsfor the next steps, let him think and pray on those then had a serious talk and came up with a plan. This type of talk happened many times over the four years of school but now in spring with graduation almost here we have a finalized plan.
- Finish Date - We gave our son a clear date to have all his work completed. It was a lot to accomplish but he really matured and stepped up this year and is on track to finish strong.
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