How to choose the best online high school

How do you choose the best online high school?  More and more online high school options are available every year.  Online high school is growing in popularity for many reasons.  Most importantly, online high schools provide a home-school-like alternative to traditional public high school, that allows students to earn accredited diplomas meeting state education requirements that are transferable to colleges nationwide.

There are a number of reasons why parents and students are looking for home-based alternatives to their high school education.  Social issues such as peer-pressure, bullying, drug and alcohol abuse by peers are the most common reasons students and parents seek home-based solutions.  Right behind that are academic issues such as peers creating distractions or unsafe learning environments, insufficient school resources, and inability to effectively address individualized student learning needs.

Online high school provides students facing these social and academic issues a number of benefits that can increase motivation and lead to a more positive and productive high school experience.  Students can set up their own safe, private work environment, take courses they enjoy, with 24/7 access.  They can finish their high school sooner than in four years, and/or start getting credit for college while still in high school.  Some online high schools offer year-round enrollment, allowing students to start and end their classes at any time.

Another major benefit provided by online high schools is a curriculum that is fully teacher supported.  Traditionally, home schooling requires that parents bear the full teaching burden of the entire high school curriculum, and this is a daunting endeavor for most people.  Online high schools lift this burden by providing professional, qualified teachers in every class.  Many colleges are rejecting “parent-led” homeschool transcripts, but are welcoming accredited transcripts from online homeschools because of the accountability and teacher support.

How Do You Choose an Online High School?

Make sure the online high school you choose offers the following:

  1. Accreditation by a recognized body such as SACS and AdvancED
  2. Honors, AP and Dual Enrollment classes
  3. Professional teachers with full teacher support
  4. Year-round, 24/7 access to classes.
  5. No hidden fees
  6. Curriculum that meets the education requirements in your state
  7. Regular progress reports
  8. Accredited diploma and transcript