Four Homeschool High School Advantagesby Lee Binz
The HomeScholar

A few summers ago my two sons graduated together from homeschool high school. They were both invited to compete in an all day full-tuition scholarship competition at their first choice university. 108 students competed for those ten full-tuition scholarships, Two of the winners were homeschoolers. Both were mine. I found myself wondering, “How did that happen?” I believe we received scholarships because of four advantages: curriculum, SAT preparation, documentation, and character. These advantages are available to all families that homeschool through high school.

The Curriculum Advantage

Many homeschoolers have a very rigorous academic plan. It doesn’t matter if they choose to unschool, or if they follow a classical education model. Homeschoolers will succeed when they learn on purpose. They will succeed when they do the “next thing” – when they keep moving forward in their homeschool journey. They can invest their money and their time in their weaker areas, as well as their areas of strength. Homeschoolers have the advantage with curriculum. We can make sure ours is tailor made to suit our students. We can make sure they are always challenged, but that they completely understand concepts before moving on. We can provide broad exposure to a variety of subjects.

The Testing Advantage

My sons had great SAT scores because we studied for the SAT test. I read that increased test scores meant increased scholarship money, so we studied two or three times a week. Each time we would do one section from the “10 Real SAT’s” book. It’s not a waste of time to study for the SAT. Students learn vocabulary, get a great math review, and learn essay writing skills. Halfway into his first quarter of college, my son said “I’m so glad you taught me how to write a quick essay! It really helped me on my midterm today!” Again with test scores, homeschoolers have the advantage. We can use SAT prep as part of our homeschool curriculum, and study it during school hours.

The Comprehensive Records Advantage

When we applied for admission, I gave the colleges a lot of information. Many homeschoolers prefer to keep their educational information Four Homeschool High School Advantagesprivate. It’s okay for colleges to ask us for our information because it’s an exchange. We give them information about our homeschool, and they give us admission and possibly scholarships.

The minimum information they need is a transcript. I chose to provide more information than the minimum, and it really helped. For everything on our transcript, I wrote a course description, listed the books we used, and documented how I graded the class. Homeschoolers have the advantage regarding educational information. We control our homeschool records and we can determine exactly how much information we provide to colleges. Our comprehensive homeschool records were so successful and so many homeschool moms requested help creating similar records, that for the next three years I worked on developing the Comprehensive Record Solution.

The Character Advantage

Character is the fourth reason I believe we were given great scholarships. My sons were invited to participate in the scholarship competition at Seattle Pacific University. because of their comprehensive records and their SAT scores, but that’s not why they won.. I was nervous about them competing in something so intense, but the kids had fun. When the boys came home that day, they both said, “I don’t know if I won, but I had a great time! All the kids were so nice!”

Later I was told that the evaluators were looking for character. The students were observed when they walked between events. Were they friendly and kind to others? How did they interact with their peers? When character and socialization are evaluated, homeschoolers have the advantage. We can mold and shape the character of our children while they are at home with us, instead of allowing them to be conformed to their peers.

So how did that happen? How did both our children win full tuition scholarships? Simple; we homeschooled them through high school!

Copyright Lee Binz, 2011
You have permission to reprint this article as long as you don't make any changes and include the bio below.

Lee Binz, The HomeScholar, specializes in helping parents homeschool high school. Get Lee's Free Resource Guide, "The 5 Biggest Mistakes Parents Make Homeschooling High School." You can find her at www.HomeHighSchoolHelp.com

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Four Homeschool High School AdvantagesThe Comprehensive Record Solution has been huge in helping me wrap my brain around this high school record bit by bit. I'm so glad my daughter is just a freshman so I can plug in her accomplishments as we go and I won't be completely overwhelmed in 4 years.

Your service is a blessing.

Julie in TN


Four Homeschool High School AdvantagesThe Dean of Admissions at CCSU complemented Ethan a few times (then me, too, after the interview) on our records. I would not have had homeschool records like that without your training and assistance, so I need to pass that complement on to you! He wanted to show the records to others in the department, and said something along the lines of what one of the admissions counselors you dealt with said--something about wishing he got more than a transcript from other students as well. I got the impression that he was very curious about homeschoolers, probably because of all the applications he's been receiving.

Ann in CT


Recommendation06Lee,

I don't know how often you hear this (probably not often enough), but what you do is a wonderful ministry. I gleaned wonderful insight from your seminars at the convention. Instead of grading my son solely on his test scores, I will now look at "the whole picture"! It'll change everything!! The information on transcripts was so simple and straightforward, that I'm actually looking forward to getting started. I've been avoiding writing my course descriptions until now too. But now, I'm more encouraged, more energized and more motivated than ever before, thanks to you. Also, I don't feel discouraged any longer in regards to my 14 year olds lack of motivation. "This too shall pass". God truly is so faithful in answering prayers, because He knows my every need. Thank you for allowing God to use you to touch my life and the lives of my children. I'll be telling anyone who will listen about what incredible resources you've provided.

May God Richly Bless You,

Susan in Bardstown, KY

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