High school is a special time in any young man’s or woman’s life. It’s a time to grow and to learn how to be a mature adult, how to work with others, and how to actively participate in a number of activities. High school is also the point where our upcoming generations will learn the basic skills to live successful lives. Sometimes students have trouble fitting in high school and finishing it out. A number of them will lead to dropping out and getting their GED certificates, but others will look for an alternative to regular high school classes. Before making the decision to take an alternative path to a high school education, seriously consider how this will affect your future.
Both high school diplomas and GED certificates are accepted at most jobs which require a high school education. But, some alternative diplomas are not accepted as proof of a high school education. These diplomas simply prove that you have taken courses which a company sees as equivalent to standard high school courses. Unless they are accredited by nationally recognized accreditation organizations, there’s a good chance you would’ve been better off dropping-out and getting your GED.
The United States National Guard offers a program called the National Guard Youth ChalleNGe. Throughout the program you are mentored and given a highly structured education in a military style environment. The Youth ChalleNGe program is accredited and widely accepted across the nation. The only problem you will come across when considering this alternative is the applications process. It is a need-based program based on previous behavior of the prospective participant. They don’t accept a large number of “cadets” which makes the program quite difficult to get in. But, if you are accepted and can make it through the program, you will leave with a high school diploma and a new sense of discipline when you come home after the 5 1/2 month program.
Home-schooling is a very popular alternative to getting your standard high school diploma. The problem is, most home-schooling programs will only give you the education, not the diploma. There are many home-schooling systems which require you to get your GED after completion of the courses. Sometimes schools will back a program like this allowing you to get your diploma through the local high school once you complete the classes. But, this is rare. Most likely a GED will be your only choice in the end.
Online schooling has become more and more popular over the past few year. Be very wary of these programs though, as many of them are not accredited and will end up costing you a fortune without helping at all! If you plan on going to college, make sure to contact any potential colleges before choosing an online educational provider. You need to be completely sure that the colleges will accept the diploma offered by these sites. Parents also need to be very careful when looking for online schooling programs. Over the years, youth have become more and more skilled with computers and many have been known to find work-arounds in these programs which allows them to easily cheat. This type of education depends fully on what your post-high school plans are and the accreditation of the program.
After you have balanced all the pros and cons of the decision, you need to sit down with your parents, or even by yourself, and think about why you are considering and alternative high school education. Is it because you just don’t want to put in the effort, or is it legitimately too difficult? Are you struggling because you don’t understand the course-work, or are you just simply to bored to stay concentrated on it? These things and many more need to be considered before making the decision. Don’t just simply look at the benefits of getting out of school and having more free time. Look at everything. Look at how the decision will affect your future and go from there. This decision is one of the biggest you will make in your life. It’s right up there with getting married, having children, going to college and so on. Don’t let your thoughts and feelings towards high school ruin your future and the plans you have for it.