Frequently Asked Home School Questions - Student Diplomas & Graduation

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Are home schools empowered by state law to issue diplomas to post high school age students?

The North Carolina home school laws apply only to schools enrolling students of compulsory attendance age (ages 7-16).   DNPE will not accept a new home school Notice of Intent for students older than 17 years old.  Post high school age persons (anyone 18 and over) may, however, obtain their high school diplomas either through the North Carolina Community College adult high school diploma program or through its GED program.   Also, see "Diploma Mills."

Are there any high school graduation ceremonies or other related events conducted honoring home school seniors?

Not by the State of North Carolina; however, privately sponsored events are held.  North Carolinians for Home Education maintains information about such events.  Click on that organization's name or call them in Raleigh at (919) 790-1100.

Does the State of North Carolina emboss its official state seal on home school diplomas?

No. The state seal is used only by government agencies of the State of North Carolina. 

Public schools and state government agencies are funded by the State of North Carolina.   Private K-12 schools and home schools are not.  Private sector schools (both conventional and home) design and use their own school seals on official school transcripts and high school diplomas. 

Also, see "Who provides diplomas for home schooled students" below.

May I send my Notice of Intent and then immediately issue my student a high school diploma?

No. The school must first meet all home school legal requirements including operating legally on a regular schedule for at least nine calendar months.

Who provides diplomas for home schooled students?

The State of North Carolina does not issue a diploma for home schooled students.  Each non-public school student receives his/hers from the chief administrator of the school in which the student is enrolled which, in a home school setting, would be from the parent/guardian. 

Individual colleges, the various branches of the United States military and the business community each determine for themselves to what extent a home school diploma will be officially recognized by these entities. 

Also, see "Transcripts -- Who designs, provides and retains them?"

Will a home school diploma be recognized by colleges, the military and the business community?

There are no state or federal laws requiring them to recognize any type of diploma from public schools, private schools or home schools.  Each college, each branch of the military and each business follows its own policies on this issue. 

However, if the home school is meeting all state requirements for its operation they are usually recognized.