A homeschool graduate applied to enter University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but immediately ran into roadblocks. A school representative told her that she must have a GED or a diploma “recognized by [her] state or school district.”

Despite the homeschool graduate’s strong high school and community college transcripts, the school would not budge. One official offered the dim hope that they might change their policy—but not until the next school year.

When the family turned to HSLDA for help, I wrote a letter on the student’s behalf. I explained that in the state where the student received her secondary education, homeschooling is recognized as lawful and that parents typically provide their homeschool grads with a high school transcript and diploma.

What the Law Says

I pointed out that homeschool graduates are just as eligible for federal financial aid as other graduates. Finally, I explained that if the school applied its written policy literally (requiring a diploma “recognized by [her] state or school district”), homeschool graduates from every state except Pennsylvania would be excluded!

School officials acknowledged receipt of the letter. And then a lengthy silence followed.

After two months, the student received fantastic news. The school offered her admission—with advanced standing—and offered her a generous scholarship!

Two weeks later the university changed its policy and removed the roadblocks this student initially encountered. To view the revised policy, click here, scroll down to “Undergraduate Applicants” to the “Homeschooled Applicants” heading.

The university representative said, “Thank you for being an advocate for this change in policy!  We truly appreciate it!”

And we appreciate the university’s gracious response and willingness to make changes to make homeschooled applicants more comfortable seeking admission.