Homeschool Transcripts: The Difference Between ‘Accredited’ and ‘Official’

Have you ever wondered about the difference between an “accredited” and an “official” homeschool transcript? A friend discovered that her son could play on a private school baseball team – IF he entered that school’s Independent Study program. The school says he needed an accredited transcript from his 9th grade year to prove that he was in the 10th grade this year. She was under the impression that his work was accredited basically by her. The school disagreed and said that could review his transcript from last year for $50 per credit hour.

She asked: What does accreditation mean? How does a homeschool student get “accredited” transcripts without paying $300-400?

There is a difference between an “accredited” and an “official” homeschool transcript. Homeschool credits are official, and our transcripts are official. Homeschool transcripts are usually NOT accredited, however. Accredited transcripts are provided by certified programs, which independent homeschoolers aren’t. (Please note: a certified program is not necessarily better than your homeschool program.) So the school is correct, our homeschool credits are simply not accredited. Our homeschool high school credits ARE official – just not accredited.

There are other programs that can accredit your transcript. North Atlantic Regional High School (NARHS), Family Academy, Clonlara…. and others I’m sure. They are usually about $50-$100 per credit. It adds up quickly, and it can be VERY expensive in the long run. At one point I calculated that a whole 4-year high school would be $2000-$5000 just for a piece of paper that says “accredited.” It wasn’t worth it to me and apparently didn’t matter too much to the colleges. They gave us two four-year full tuition scholarships based on my “mommy-made” official transcripts. The accreditation agencies make a lot of money this way, though.

Accreditation programs generally come with some strings attached. You have to enroll with them, and use their curriculum and programs. Try to find a baseball experience that allows you to homeschool independently, without giving away your flexibility to homeschool your child the way that fits.

Strangely enough, you may have better luck with a baseball team associated with the public school. You can ask them about playing on their team, and see if they will allow you to access that under part-time enrollment, without going to school there at all.


Lee Binz, The HomeScholar, and her husband, Matt, are homeschool high school experts. Their boys earned full-tuition scholarships at their first choice university. Their homeschool transcript solution will show you how to create an AMAZING home school transcript that will impress the colleges! Learn how she did it on TheHomeScholar.com.

avatar Lee Binz (12 Posts)

Lee Binz is a veteran homeschooling mom of two and the owner of The HomeScholar, “Helping parents homeschool high school.” She has a new free minicourse called “The 5 Biggest Mistakes Parents Make When Homeschooling High School”. You can sign up for her free email homeschool newsletter, The HomeScholar Record and get your daily dose of wisdom via e-mail from her homeschool blog, The HomeScholar Helper.


3 Responses to Homeschool Transcripts: The Difference Between ‘Accredited’ and ‘Official’

  • avatar
    Jamie says:

    NARHS is a scam. The transcript you buy is just a “glorified” homeschool transcript that has a raised seal. Most colleges/universities realize this now especially if they just take a few minutes to review the NARHS website. Not all the credits on your NARHS transcript will be acceptable to many universities. If you feel the need to buy a high school transcript instead of creating your own and want to pay over $525 each year for the printing and mailing of your transcript this is the place for you to go.

  • avatar
    Kimm says:

    NARHS does not cost $50-100 per credit, but $425 per year. NARHS lets you use your own curricula and even turn non-traditional classes, such as unschooling, into high school credit. You can check it out at http://www.narhs.org.

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