Homeschooling Your Child Through High School



Special offer from Keystone High School
Visit their website for a free online course demo.


February 19, 2009

Sign Me Up!
for this e-zine

Home schooling throughout the high school years is very appealing for many families. No one can underestimate the demands of High School, especially in this competitive time for young adults, as they prepare for college and their future livelihood. Families choose to homeschool during these impressionable years for many reasons. Typical reasons often include:

  • to provide individualized instruction to meet a students’ needs;
  • to include religious or other important values that are not offered elsewhere; or
  • to allow a student to work at their own pace.

Working at one’s own, or best pace can mean many things for different families. Some students, who are struggling may need “extra” time to complete work satisfactorily while other home schooled students may want to cover a wider, deeper spectrum in a given subject area.

Preparing a high school curriculum for your student can be a daunting task. No matter what type of student your child is, you should focus on a strong breadth of courses for their High School years. These usually include Core Courses such as Math, English, Science and Social Studies, Foreign Language Courses, and many Electives. You may even want to consider Advanced Placement and Honors Courses which allow students to gain advanced standing or credit through colleges and universities. These courses also give your student a deeper understanding of certain subjects.

The professional educators and service team at Keystone National High School understand the needs of homeschooling families who must determine the appropriate high school program for their children. That’s why we’ve asked Keystone to help us understand the options that students have during their high school years if they enroll in the Keystone program.

Here’s what they told us:


  • AP Courses are college level courses taken as part of a high school program. AP courses offer advanced students the opportunity to take courses with more challenging college-level content. Keystone National High School offers Advanced Placement courses in 17 subjects, including English, History, Economics, Mathematics, and Science. Students who complete AP courses are eligible to take the AP exams, administered each May by the College Board. These exams are scored on a scale of 1-5. Students scoring between a 3 and 5 may qualify for college credit at most colleges and universities.

AP courses are available to junior or senior high school students who have successfully completed advanced courses in core subjects (including successful completion of an Honors course) and are college-bound.

If parents (or students) are not sure whether or not they are ready for AP classes, students can take the Keystone Honors Readiness Test.  The exam contains 16 questions and assesses a student’s ability to interpret information, analyze situations, and design solutions.


  • Honors courses require more intensive study than regular courses, which is an important step in the preparation for higher education. The Keystone Honors courses are designed with a variety of enriched activities that give students the opportunity to expand their critical thinking skills and written communication ability, also important traits to have when entering college.

Colleges love to see applicants that have taken Advanced Placement (AP) and honors classes as it distinguishes that those students are hard-workers, committed to higher education and able to manage their time. Both Honors and AP classes offer students opportunities to enhance their learning and learn valuable skills during their transition from a high school to college student. By using a structured program, the students can develop their abilities in a supportive environment.


  • Dual enrollment allows students to take college credit courses while still in high school. This gives students the advantage of completing some of their basic and core courses before entering college, which then allows them to graduate college earlier or take additional specialized courses. Families interested in this path need to check with the college of their choice for the regulations and requirements.
  • Accelerated learning
  • gives students the opportunity to complete the required coursework earlier than through a traditional high school setting, allowing them to complete their high school requirements at an earlier age. Most students who are planning to graduate earlier do both accelerated learning AND dual enrollment.


In addition to the AP, Honors, Dual Enrollment and Accelerated Learning courses that Keystone offers, they also offer:

  • Flexible schedule and delivery of the curriculum (including online or traditional correspondence courses)
  • Open enrollment
  • Progress Reports and Observer Accounts for parents to track their children’s progress
  • Simple fee pricing for tuition costs, which includes textbooks and course materials
  • Option of full-time enrollment or supplemental enrollment.
  • Access to Student Services, which include:
  • Teacher response within 24 hours to answer questions about curriculum
  • Technical Support is available 24/7.
  • Full Time Students also receive access to additional services including an Orientation Course, a Learning Coach, and Tutoring (first 75 minutes FREE)
  • One-on-one instruction from certified teachers, guidance and support, and unlimited access to the greater Keystone community to create a learning environment that supports the whole student.


By providing college-bound students with resources, support, and advanced options such as honors and AP classes, families can ensure that their child’s needs are not only met but that they are challenged, skilled, and prepared for their future.


“Homeschooling was an adventure for me, and I can’t imagine childhood any differently.
My parents are very enthusiastic about reading and learning, and they wanted us
to have a superior education. When it came time for high school, [we] chose Keystone
because it had the best courses, the best materials, and made a lot of sense.”
Jenny N., Polo, Missouri
Homeschool student and Keystone Graduate




Keystone National High School, is an accredited independent study high school, serving students in all 50 states and around the world and offers its courses both online and by traditional correspondence. Keystone is accredited by the Northwest Association of Accredited Schools, the Distance Education and Training Council, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, and is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Keystone has been a leading provider of quality independent study programs to homeschooling families since 1995.

You can review Keystone’s features in greater detail by visiting Keystone’s website.
The staff welcomes calls: 1-800-255-4937; or email Keystone staff at: [email protected]