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Janeway

Minimum high school diploma?

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Friend whose child is younger than my oldest but older than my second child, should be going in to senior year, her child has special needs and won't do any work anymore at all. She says she squeaks by requiring some shows about history and science. I am not sure how things are when a child has special needs. This a family that was not homeschooling until the shut down who say public school was going poorly anyway and he probably will refuse to go back if his school opens in the fall. He cannot focus and does not really engage in things.  Is there a minimum diploma? This is for a state without high regulation.  She is not envisioning the child going to college but is hoping for some sort of trade school. It looks like the trade schools require high school diplomas. Anyone know anything about this that I can pass on? 

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There are 2 schools that come to mind. I believe both of them have existed for approximately 100 years, but with different names. Back in the day (before Internet) they were known as "Correspondence Schools".  I believe that both of them are accredited by a Regional accreditation agency and that both of them are extremely inexpensive. I think a few years ago there was someone on WTM who had a DC who was a graduate of one of those schools or who was a student at that time or who had herself graduated from one of these schools. Whether or not the boy in question will do the required work is something only he and the mother can work on. Good luck to him!

(1) American School (Chicagoland)

http://www.americanschoolofcorr.com/

(2) Penn Foster (Pennsylvania)

https://www.pennfoster.edu/high-school

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1 hour ago, Janeway said:

Friend whose child is younger than my oldest but older than my second child, should be going in to senior year, her child has special needs and won't do any work anymore at all. She says she squeaks by requiring some shows about history and science. I am not sure how things are when a child has special needs. This a family that was not homeschooling until the shut down who say public school was going poorly anyway and he probably will refuse to go back if his school opens in the fall. He cannot focus and does not really engage in things.  Is there a minimum diploma? This is for a state without high regulation.  She is not envisioning the child going to college but is hoping for some sort of trade school. It looks like the trade schools require high school diplomas. Anyone know anything about this that I can pass on? 

A lot of my answer would depend on which state, and what kind of disability.  

There are states in the U.S., which use a single diploma model, so even students with significant cognitive disabilities who are far below grade level and are assessed with alternate standards, graduate with high school diplomas.  There are other states where students who need alternate standards graduate with a certificate.  

Knowing the state would be helpful, but I can totally understand if you don't want to share that.

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In TX, students with an IEP can get a high school diploma without meeting the standards on regular STAAR testing. They take modified tests and have to fulfill the course plan laid out for them in their ARD meetings. If they're eligible for a young adult program that works on employability and job skills, the ISD holds their diploma until they finish that program when they are 22.

If the student doesn't have an IEP, they have to fulfill the regular requirements.

In my ISD, they will permit any student who doesn't want to go to school in person due to Covid to continue with distance learning. I think this policy is widespread among TX ISDs for next year. That might be an option if he doesn't have an IEP.

If he does have an IEP or a 504 plan, she should ask for an ARD meeting to decide the best option for him.

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two inputs from me

1. check with the school about transition options for the student and how to graduate from the school.  see what they offer first since he is  a student there.

2. if homeschool is what family wants, another place to look would be NARHS. check the handbook for info and the faq for the graduation fee thing. https://www.narhs.com/Downloads They would be able to transfer his public school records and count those.  Figure out what else is needed of the 17.5 credits (yep, that's the minimum) toward graduation and maybe get one final class done such as English/Language Arts if that is needed.  If the other mom is not interested in designing a course, depending on the special needs, etc, there are various options for textbooks to get that last english credit done. for ideas with that, wieser educational may have some ideas in their catalog that narhs would then approve.   https://www.wiesereducational.com/products/b_english-language-arts/ 

 

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I know he has ASD, but while when I first met the mom, I had been under the impression he was similar to my oldest. However, in recent times, when I have visited, he will sit next to me but barely look at me. He will answer me if I talk to him. He takes some sort of life skills training at the school, but he takes academic classes too. The mom says he has said he is going to go to college too, but she says it is not really a possibility. There is some sort of plan for an adult training program, but I am not sure what that involves. He won't do the public school online program.  He likes taking care of people and animals. His mom fosters animals and he loves taking care of them. They have chickens and such too. He also has done some help, with supervision I think, caring for some elderly and disabled family members. So he likes people and animals a lot. The mom is nervous about going the graduating from home school route, but she is a mess thinking about trying to make him do whatever they were requiring of him last spring in school.

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I second the recommendation for NARHS. I've read that some people have had trouble with trade schools not accepting homeschool diplomas (requiring an accredited diploma or a GED), and NARHS is fully accredited. As cbollin mentioned, they only require 17.5 credits, and they will count all the credits he has from PS, so he will probably only need one more English credit, which can be homeschooled and will be evaluated/transcripted by NARHS. Their minimum for a full credit is only 80 hours, so he can do the bare minimum to get that last box checked off, and then he's done and can move on with his life. It's not free (looks like it would be $775 to transfer the courses, evaluate the last English credit, graduate him, and provide the official transcript), but it would give him an accredited diploma as quickly as possible, with minimal additional coursework. I would also find out what the admission requirements are for any trade schools he might be interested in, and make sure he can meet those. 

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On 6/29/2020 at 7:39 PM, Janeway said:

There is some sort of plan for an adult training program, but I am not sure what that involves. He won't do the public school online program.  He likes taking care of people and animals. His mom fosters animals and he loves taking care of them. They have chickens and such too. He also has done some help, with supervision I think, caring for some elderly and disabled family members. So he likes people and animals a lot. The mom is nervous about going the graduating from home school route, but she is a mess thinking about trying to make him do whatever they were requiring of him last spring in school.

In my ISD, the young adult program finds internships for their participants and helps them with job coaching and life skills training to be as independent as possible. One of Geezle's high school job rotations was in a memory care facility. I wouldn't do anything that would affect a high school senior's access to the training program because it is the best pathway to getting a job after graduation. The other route is the Texas Workforce Commission, but the ISD's young adult is much better at finding their clients work they will like.

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