5 Things to Know
Changes in PROMISE scholarship eligibility requirements for homeschoolers, effective July 2018, are now being implemented. Here are some key things homeschoolers should know about the changes.
- No more GED. Homeschool graduates are no longer required to take the GED to qualify for the PROMISE scholarship.
- Same requirements as public and private school students. To qualify for the PROMISE, homeschoolers now have basically the same academic requirements as public school students:
- Minimum ACT composite score of 22 or SAT combined of 1100,
- Minimum ACT scores of 20 in English, Mathematics, Science, and Reading – or a minimum SAT of 520 in math and 530 in reading,
- Grade Point Average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in all high school course work, and
- GPA of 3.0 in core classes required by the WV Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC).
- Must include “core classes”. SB 319, which passed in the 2018 legislative session, requires a 3.0 in core classes to qualify for the PROMISE. The core classes prescribed by HEPC include 4 English credits; 4 Social Studies credits; 4 Math credits; and 3 Science credits. This list of core classes will now be an important document for homeschool families wishing to become PROMISE-eligible.
- Documentation needed. The core classes taken must be listed on their prescribed Homeschooled Grade Report Form and submitted to HEPC along with a transcript of all high school classes and grades. The names of the core classes listed on the form should reasonably match the course names of the core classes listed on HEPC’s website. In addition to the Homeschooled Grade Report Form, applicants must fill out the PROMISE application.
- Other requirements remain. In addition to academic requirements outlined above, other requirements for PROMISE remain unchanged. Among these include residency requirements, application deadlines, submission of FAFSA, and documentation from the county board office that the student was homeschooled during the 11th and 12th grades. See the complete list of requirements at the CFWV website.
The CFWV can help with both PROMISE eligibility and the entire FAFSA application process.
Note 11/13/2020: If you have a student who qualifies for a Promise Scholarship you will need to get a letter from your county board of education stating that your child was homeschooled in the 11th and 12th grades. Unfortunately, some parents have recently had some difficulty obtaining this documentation.
If you find yourself in a situation where county officials hesitate to verify your student’s homeschool status, you may need to remind them that a NOI, even one submitted four years ago, is valid until you notify the county that you have ended the home education of your student.
It is also very important to make sure you are following the law by submitting assessments in the years required (3rd,5th, 8th, and 11th). These filings will support your case when you need documentation from a county. By filing your 11th grade assessment you have de facto proof that you homeschooled in the 11th grade, even when county officials say they cannot give you verification.