As a college-bound homeschool student, or as a parent of a homeschooled senior there are some things you should be considering right now. Planning ahead can mean less worry later!
1. Make sure you take the ACT or SAT immediately if you have not already done so. Give your student several practice tests before the actual test date.
2. Put finishing touches on transcript. There are templates available on-line or in books, however, you can design a transcript using an Excel spread sheet and achieve a very professional looking document. Get creative! Remember, you have to take your homeschooling experience and make it “fit” the public school’s description. Use real life experiences for high school credit. For instance, if your daughter helps with meal preparation and planning, give it the label “Homemaking class.”
3. Include any other information with your transcript that puts a positive light upon your student’s homeschool experience: a reading list of classical literature and historical selections, class descriptions, and text book titles and authors. High school achievement test scores are also a wise item to include since they add an official look to your transcript.
4. Begin making application to colleges you are considering. Most colleges offer academic scholarships based upon ACT/SAT scores and high school GPA. The deadlines to apply are usually between Dec. and Feb., so check now to see if your homeschool student qualifies. If your test score is not high enough take it again! Most students raise their score by several points when they retake the ACT/SAT.
5. Make plans to file your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) as soon after Jan. 1 as possible, which means getting your tax information in order now. This filing will largely determine your student’s financial aid package: whether he qualifies for a Pell Grant, for state grants or an institutional grant.