Not everyone has a high school diploma. Those who don’t face more barriers than those who do. In fact, three years ago in the United States, 44.6% of high school dropouts aged 25 and up were employed, compared to 72.3% of college graduates. Not only that, but high school dropouts have poorer health, reduced intergenerational mobility, and more restricted social lives.
The good news is that, with the rise of online high schools, it’s easier than ever before for mature students to get their high school diplomas. For instance, mature students with families or jobs can choose how many online courses they take, so that their education does not compromise their life outside of school and vice versa. More, online high schools offer mature students the kind of personal attention and support that many traditional high schools do not.
There’s a lot of stigma surrounding high school dropouts that impacts the way they’re treated and perceived. Many feel embarrassed that they dropped out, as though doing so was a personal failing. But the reasons people drop out of high school in their teens are complex and aren’t necessarily a reflection of their character.
For instance, poverty plays a major role in high school dropout rates. It’s far more likely for teenage students from low-income communities to drop out of high school than more privileged students. Family obligations can also interfere with school. Someone who takes care of a sick parent because their parent can’t afford the appropriate medical attention simply won’t have time to excel in school.
The system isn’t fair, clearly. But online high schools help give high school dropouts another chance to complete their degree on a more levelled playing field.
How Online High Schools Benefit Mature Students
When a mature student looking to obtain credits in math takes an MHF4U Advanced Functions Grade 12 course at an accredited high school, they are given the flexibility and resources they need to succeed. They can set their own pace—meaning they can set their own deadlines and choose the speed at which they move through course material. Online, they can also:
- Seek help from one-on-one tutors
- Access all course materials with a click of the mouse
- Easily track their progress
- Convene with other mature students
Tips for Mature Students
Taking online high school courses in adulthood is different from taking in-person high school courses as a teen. Mature students often know their strengths and weaknesses, as well as how to schedule their studies, and they are more realistic about their goals. They are often also more enthusiastic about their schooling. Having been through life, they understand how enjoyable learning can be.
All of these things work in their favour when they take online high school courses. Now that they’re adults, mature students have a new opportunity to reap the immeasurable benefits of having a high school diploma.