Most new homeschoolers in Georgia today want accreditation because it is a fact that Georgia public colleges can be a little hostile toward homeschoolers. However, this is not necessary . Homeschoolers can opt for private colleges or meet other criteria to get into colleges without accreditation. Here is a question I just received:
Q: I am about to start homeschooling in GA and have three sons ranging from 5th grade to 9th. I need an accredited diploma. Can you help me?
A: Accredited homeschools in GA can make your life easier, but they are neither mandatory , or necessary. Reasons you may need to use an accredited homeschool curriculum are :
1. Your children are hoping for NCAA Division 1 scholarships: This would make qualification extremely easy, even though NCAA also has a process for non accredited homeschoolers.
2. Homeschoolers who test poorly: SAT, ACT, and other tests are what colleges look at to back up the portfolio. If these scores are mediocre or poor, having an accredited diploma will allow the scores to be ignored, or perhaps not submitted at all.
3. Hopes that students will attend a state college or looking to get the HOPE scholarship: Many Georgia homeschoolers only apply to private and out of state colleges because GA state colleges show a lot of prejudice against homeschoolers demanding that their test scores are in the 85th percentile for HOPE, or demanding higher test scores than they would of public school students. GA homeschoolers who do not have test scores in the 85th percentile but get 3.0 or higher as college freshmen still qualify for the HOPE scholarships retroactively.
4: Looking for easy access to dual enrollment and funding in the upper grades. This law was just changed and now unaccredited homeschoolers can get free funding for dual enrollment at local colleges, although their standards are still higher for homeschoolers to get in.
I say this not to sway you for or against accreditation, but I want you to have the information, and I want you to be more relaxed about it. With that said, here are homeschool programs in Georgia that you can use for accreditation. This list is not all inclusive, but includes some of the more popular programs.
Public-School-at-home programs provided free of charge by the state such as
Georgia k12 (Georgia Cyber Schools) http://www.k12.com/gca
Univeristy of Georgia online courses www.gactr.uga.edu/idl
( warning … these are quite time intensive, using seat work to make up for face to face time. It could take highschoolers over 12 hours to finish the school day, leaving no time for personal activities or supplementation for electives or African American curriculum )
Hybrid homeschool programs (can get expensive) where kids go in one or two a week for instruction and do the rest of the work at home such as:
James Madison High School www . jmhs .com
Veritas Classical School http://www.veritashomeschools.com/
Artios Academies prep program (my kids went here , but did not participate in the prep program which JUST received accreditation… nothing African American specific about this program) http://www.artiosacademies.com/
Online high schools (also costly) such as:
Allied HIgh Schools http://www.alliedhighschool.com/
Bridgeway academy www.homeschoolacademy.com
American school: www.americanschoolofcorr.com
Calvert school : www.calvertschool.org
Another option is to follow your own program. Research and decide which curriculums are best for you and your kids needs. Integrate subjects they are passionate about, day trips, and conversations into your curriculum and then have an accrediting agency review your work and grant the kids a diploma. This is not cheap, and the standards are not always easy to follow .