Parent question: Can you start high school courses in middle school? If so, do you include them on your transcript, and under which year?

Yes! You can start any course at any time your teen is ready. It is typical that when a middle school student earns high school credit, that the course is noted on the high school transcript in the 9th grade year. There are a couple of exceptions.

If your teen has taken 1 or 2 high school courses before 9th grade, it’s easy to just include those in 9th grade. You can indicate using an asterisk * after the course that it was taken early, but you don’t have to.

Reasons to include pre-high school classes on a high school transcript

A reason you WOULD include them is when your state has high school graduation requirements (most don’t) and that requirement won’t be met in high school. For instance, if your state requires a course in STATE GOVERMENT, and your teen did the course in 8th grade, it’s really important to include it.

A reason you WOULD include them is when a target college’s admissions policy asks for something specific. For instance, if your target college asks for 2 years of foreign language and your teen studied high school Spanish in 8th and 9th grades, it’s really important to include it.

Reasons to NOT include pre-high school classes on a high school transcript

A reason you might NOT include an early course is when your state’s high school graduation requirement would be met too early. Since staying in high school a full 4 years often gives you the best financial incentive (dual enrollment tuition is reduced for free in high school) you don’t want your teen’s eligibility to end.

A reason you might NOT include an early course is when your teen will have a lot of college credit and a jam-packed high school transcript. Many teens in our community earn 30-60 college credits in high school. That equates to an extra 10-20 high school credits! If your teen falls in this category, you’ll probably start to run out of space and may decide to leave those 8th grade classes off the transcript in favor of listing college credit instead.


More about transcripts

Transcript Resource Page

It’s only the most important homeschool document you’ll ever create!  No pressure. We have lots of free and paid resource recommendations below. One thing to be aware of, is that recording college credit on a high school transcript is a bit different than recording high school credit. Families who have a lot of college credit […]

Size and Type of Font for our Transcript?

Mailing in a paper copy of your teen’s high school transcript? Unlikely. Today, almost all of you will have to send, upload, attach, or email the transcript digitally. Whether you do this through an application portal or to the college directly, the size and type of font you use are important.

Author:

Executive Director of Homeschooling for College Credit