High School Alternatives

Written by Ingrid Chen
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Though a vast majority of youths attend secondary schools, some choose to take alternative routes to receiving the mandatory education required to obtain a high school diploma. Some parents, unsatisfied with their local public school system, may choose to home-school their children as an alternative. Some students who are exceptionally gifted but do not thrive well in large classes may find it easier to focus on studies at their own pace, which is oftentimes much faster than what conventional secondary schools can provide.

The public school system is by no means consistently substandard. However, some might find that public schools do not meet their needs, with some areas of the United States suffering from increasingly overpopulated classes, high teacher turnover rate, and decreasing school terms due to lack of funding. More recently, lawmakers are taking steps to improve the state of educational quality. In some places, more tax money is funneled into school budgets. Other places change city or county policies to meet the needs of students and teachers alike.

Traditional schooling is not for everyone. If you find yourself in that position, you may consider the alternatives. Personally, after an intense three years of high school, during which I achieved excellent grades but felt increasingly overwhelmed, I chose to leave high school after my junior year and enter college early. One of my close friends left public school after the seventh grade, choosing home-schooling and traveling the world in the meantime.

Diploma Equivalency Requirements

In order to take the steps we did, we both successfully passed the GED (General Educational Development) examination. No matter what the situation, to be considered equivalent to a high school graduate one must take and successfully pass the standard GED tests. Many occupations nowadays require a high school diploma or equivalency to be considered a serious applicant. Most colleges, as well, require a diploma or equivalency to attend their institutions. Whatever path you choose to take, keep in mind your ultimate goals, and the education needed to pass the GED if necessary for achieving those goals.

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