Home : High School

The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only. It is not to be considered legal advice or counsel.

The way that public schools grant high school credits is determined by state regulations. COMAR 13A.03.02.04 identifies a number of ways that a student can earn credit, even when they have not completed an official public school course but can successfully demonstrate having learned a specific unit of study.

Maryland homeschoolers only need to worry about public school credits **IF** they plan on transfering their student into high school **AND** they would like to transfer certain homeschool credits with their student.

The Bad News

Public schools are not obligated to accept a homeschool umbrella's transcript listing high school credits earned. Even if your umbrella is registered with the Maryland State Department of Education as a non-public school, it is unlikely your umbrella has a Memorandum of Understanding that states classes that MSDE will accept as a transfer credit. The same holds true for "accredited" online schools, such as Penn Foster or K12.

The Good News

State regulations identify seven alternative ways for earning high school credit - four of which apply to homeschool transfer credits.

  1. Credit Through Examination
    High school credit can be earned "by passing an examination that assesses student demonstration of local school system curricular objectives". Generally, this means a student must pass the end-of-year final for a class, but COMAR does not actually require the examination be a written one. Oral exams for foreign language, English, science, and social studies credits have been used. Additionally, multiple credits can be earned with a single passing score on a final exam. For example, a student passing an Algebra 2 final can earn a high school credit for Algebra 1 and Algebra 2.
  2. Independent Study/Internships
    Maryland does not specifically define "Independent Study", but it does allow a student to earn high school credit if the student "successfully demonstrates pre-established curricular objectives". A homeschool portfolio with comprehensive work samples can be presented to the school's department chairperson for the subject area to review and determine if the homeschool coursework meets state standards.

  3. Pre-Approved Online Courses
    MSDE maintains a comprehensive list of online courses that have gone through a vigorous vetting process and have been determined to be equivalent to courses that are are currently offered in Maryland public schools. COMAR requires that the online course must be delivered by the local school system in order for the credit to be granted. You can try to make the case that your local high school should accept a pre-approved online course that is taken directly from the online course provider, but no guarantee exists that the school will do so.
  4. College Courses
    Every Maryland community college has an articulation agreement with their local public school district that lists specific college level courses that are eligible for high school credit. Contact your school district and request a copy of the transfer credit list, so you will know ahead of time what transfer options you can argue for.

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The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only. It is not to be considered legal advice or counsel.



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